Stage names:

Iwai Hanshir˘ VII In Japanese
Iwai Shijaku I In Japanese
Iwai Matsunosuke I In Japanese
Iwai Komurasaki I In Japanese

Nickname: Shijaku Hanshir˘

Guild: Yamatoya

Line number: SHICHIDAIME (VII)

Poetry names: Sench˘, Tojaku

Existence: 1804 ~ 1st day of the 4th lunar month of 1845 [1]


Great-grandfather: Sawamura S˘jűr˘ II

Grandfathers: Iwai Hanshir˘ IV, Sawamura S˘jűr˘ III

Father: Iwai Hanshir˘ V

Father-in-law: Segawa Rok˘ IV

Eldest brother: Iwai Hanshir˘ VI

Son: Iwai Hanshir˘ VIII

Disciple : Iwai Matsunosuke II


1804: born in Edo. He was the second son of the star Iwai Hanshir˘ V, who gave him the name of Iwai Komurasaki I.

11th lunar month of 1806: Iwai Komurasaki I took the name of Iwai Matsunosuke I at the Nakamuraza.

3rd lunar month of 1814: premiere at the Ichimuraza of Tsuruya Nanboku IV's drama "Sumidagawa Hana no Goshozome", commonly called "Onna Seigen"; Matsunosuke played the role of Yoshida Umewakamaru [more details].

7th lunar month of 1815: premiere at the Kawarasakiza of Tsuruya Nanboku IV's drama "Haji Momiji Ase no Kaomise" (commonly called "Date no Jűyaku", in English the 'Ten Roles of Date'), whose plot and characters belonged to the "Meiboku Sendai Hagi" world; Matsunosuke played the role of Yoemon's daughter Oriku [casting].

3rd lunar month of 1817: premiere at the Kawarasakiza of Tsuruya Nanboku IV's masterpiece "Sakura Hime Azuma Bunsh˘"; Matsunosuke played the role of Inanoya Hanjűr˘ [casting].

3rd lunar month of 1820: premiere at the Tamagawaza of Tsuruya Nanboku IV's drama "Sakura Butai Maku no Datezome"; Matsunosuke played the role of Takao [casting].

1820 ~ 1821: tour in Kamigata with his father.

6th lunar month of 1821: Katsu Hy˘z˘ I's drama "Kachi Zum˘ Ukina no Hanabure", commonly called "Shirafuji Genta", was revived for the first time, 11 years and 3 months after its premiere in Edo, in Ky˘to at the Kitagawa no Shibai; Matsunosuke played the role of Osawa [casting].

11th lunar month of 1822: Iwai Matsunosuke I took the name of Iwai Shijaku I at the Moritaza, performing in the kaomise drama "Hanayagura Wakoku no Kachidoki".

11th lunar month of 1822 ~ 10th lunar month of 1823: the best year of the Iwai Clan; the tateonnagata for the 3 Edo theaters (Edo Sanza) were Iwai Hanshir˘ V (Ichimuraza), Iwai Kumesabur˘ II (Nakamuraza) and Shijaku (Moritaza).

3rd lunar month of 1823: premiere at the Moritaza of the 5-role hengemono "Yamato Gana Tamuke no Itsumoji"; the five roles [2] were performed by Shijaku [more details].

8th lunar month of 1826: premiere at the Nakamuraza of Tsuruya Nanboku IV's drama "Soga Nakamura Aki no Torikomi"; Shijaku played the roles of the onna hinin Mikazuki Osen and the Iwamotoin son Zenjib˘ [casting].

Winter 1831: Shijaku went for the second time on tour in Kamigata.

2nd lunar month of 1832: the "Goj˘bashi" scene of "ďgiya Kumagai", which was not in the original puppet drama, was added to this drama for the first time and staged in ďsaka at the Kado no Shibai; Shijaku played the role of Kohagi (in reality Taira no Atsumori) [more details].

11th lunar month of 1832: great shűmei in Edo for the Iwai clan at the Nakamuraza (without Shijaku); Iwai Hanshir˘ V, Iwai Kumesabur˘ II and Iwai Hisajir˘ II respectively took the names of Iwai Tojaku, Iwai Hanshir˘ VI and Iwai Kumesabur˘ III.

3rd lunar month of 1835: Shijaku played at the Naka no Shibai (ďsaka) the roles of Yae and Tonami in the drama "Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami".

4th lunar month of 1835: Shijaku went back to Edo.

8th day of the 4th lunar month of 1836 [3]: his elder brother Iwai Hanshir˘ VI died.

11th lunar month of 1837: premiere at the Nakamuraza of Sakurada Jisuke III's Tokiwazu-based hengemono "Kubeki Yoi Kumo no Itosuji", which was staged at the end of the kaomise drama "Kanzen Ch˘aku Tsuwamono no Kao Kagami". It starred Sawamura Tossh˘ I and Shijaku [more details].

3rd lunar month of 1844: Iwai Shijaku I took the name of Iwai Hanshir˘ VII [5] at the Nakamuraza, performing in the drama "Sugata no Hana Yayoi no Kagamiyama". He also performed in the dance "Shin-Yoshiwara Suzume" and played the role of Agemaki [6] in the drama "Sukeroku".

5th lunar month of 1844: Hanshir˘ played in the same theater the roles of Sakuramaru and Chiyo [7] in the drama "Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami".

1st lunar month of 1845: Hanshir˘ appeared on stage for the last time, in Edo at the Nakamuraza, where he performed in the drama "Tama Tsubaki Genpei Soga". He suddenly fell ill.

1st day of the 4th lunar month of 1845 [1]: hanshir˘ died [4].


Iwai Hanshir˘ VII was a talented onnagata actor, endowed with a beautiful face, who excelled in the roles of machi musume in sewamono dramas. Like his brother Iwai Hanshir˘ VI, he died too young, before reaching the peak of his career. He published two books about his art, in 1823 and 1828.

[1] The 1st day of the 4th lunar month of the 2nd year of the K˘ka era was the 6th of May 1845 in the western calendar.

[2] The 4th role, the komori, is still in the Kabuki repertoire and is nowadays entitled "Komori".

[3] The 8th day of the 4th lunar month of the 7th year of the Tenp˘ era was the 22nd of May 1836 in the western calendar.

[4] Iwai Hanshir˘ VII's tombstone was located in the cemetery of the J˘shinji Temple in the district of Fukagawa.

[5] It was also the shűmei of Matsumoto K˘shir˘ VI and Ichikawa Komaz˘ VII.

[6] The roles of Sukeroku and Ikyű were played by Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII and Matsumoto K˘shir˘ VI.

[7] The roles of Matsu˘maru and Ume˘maru were played by Matsumoto K˘shir˘ VI and Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII.

Iwai Hanshir˘ VII portraying the courtesan ďiso no Tora, the lover of Soga Jűr˘ in sogamono dramas, in a print made by Kunisada I in the 6th lunar month of 1852

Print made by Utagawa Toyokuni in 1819

Print made by Utagawa Kunisada in 1824

Print made by Utagawa Kunisada (1830~1843)

Print made by Utagawa Kunisada in 1852

The Iwai Komurasaki line of actors

The Iwai Matsunosuke line of actors

The Iwai Shijaku line of actors

The Iwai Hanshir˘ line of actors

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