JULY 2022

2 in ďsaka (Sh˘chikuza), 5 shows in T˘ky˘ (Kabukiza, National Theatre), 1 in Ky˘to (Minamiza) and 1 tour (Sh˘chiku Kabuki Dance Tour)!

  • Living National Treasure Kataoka Nizaemon, Nakamura Ganjir˘, Nakamura Senjaku, Kataoka Takatar˘, Matsumoto K˘shir˘, Nakamura Kankur˘, Nakamura Shichinosuke and Nakamura Kazutar˘ perform at the Sh˘chikuza!
  • Ichikawa Ennosuke, Ichikawa Ebiz˘, Onoe Kikunosuke, Nakamura Jakuemon, Nakamura Fukusuke, Nakamura Kinnosuke, Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Udanji, Band˘ Yajűr˘, Band˘ Minosuke, Onoe Ukon, Nakamura Karoku, Nakamura Matagor˘ and Nakamura Kotar˘ perform at the Kabukiza!
  • Onoe Sh˘roku and Nakamura Baishi perform at the National Theatre!
  • Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘ performs at the Minamiza!
  • Nakamura Shikan and his three sons are on tour!
  • Sh˘chikuza (ďsaka)
    Dates 3 ~ 24 July 2022
    Kansai Kabuki o Ai Suru Kai Shichigatsu ďkabuki
    The 30th Kansai Kabuki Lovers Society July Grand Kabuki
    MatinÚe

    Komochi Yamanba
    (Yaegiri Kuruwa Banashi)

    Ukare Shinjű

    Evening

    Horikawa Nami no Tsuzumi

    Gion Koi Zukushi

    Casting

    Living National Treasure Kataoka Nizaemon, Nakamura Ganjir˘, Nakamura Senjaku, Kataoka Takatar˘, Matsumoto K˘shir˘, Nakamura Kankur˘, Nakamura Shichinosuke, Nakamura Kazutar˘, Nakamura Kikaku, Nakamura Hayato, Nakamura Toranosuke, Kataoka Sennosuke, Kataoka Matsunosuke, Nakamura Jűjir˘

    Comments

    30th edition of the Kansai Kabuki Lovers Society July Grand Kabuki in ďsaka.

  • Yaegiri Kuruwa Banashi: Yamanba, or the mountain hag, has been celebrated for centuries in traditional Japanese dance and theater. In the Kabuki version, Yamanba becomes a beautiful woman, a courtesan who becomes the wife of the samurai Tokiyuki and retreats to the mountains to miraculously give birth to the powerful warrior Sakata Kintoki. This play was originally by the great Chikamatsu Monzaemon I and is a classic of Kansai style Kabuki. Kataoka Takatar˘ appears as the courtesan who tells the humorous story of a fight between courtesans over a handsome man and then mysteriously becomes pregnant by the spirit of her husband. Starring Matsumoto K˘shir˘ and Nakamura Toranosuke in the roles of Yaegiri's husband Sakata Tokiyuki and the villain ďta Jűr˘.
  • Ukare Shinjű: based on a novel by contemporary writer Inoue Hisashi, this is a parody of all serious love suicide plays and finally ends with the main characters flying through the air on their way to the underworld. Full of thrills and comedy and with Nakamura Kankur˘ making a rare flight through the theater. Featuring also Nakamura Ganjir˘, Nakamura Senjaku, Nakamura Shichinosuke and Matsumoto K˘shir˘.
  • Horikawa Nami no Tsuzumi: one of the three plays by Chikamatsu Monzaemon concerning adultery. Ogura Hikokur˘'s wife Otane (Nakamura Senjaku) leads a lonely life as Hikokur˘ (Nakamura Kankur˘) takes turns in attending on the Sh˘gun in Edo. She offers sake to her drum master Miyaji Gen'emon (Nakamura Hayato) to prevent him from revealing her makeshift answer to her husband's colleague Isobe Yukaemon (Nakamura Kikaku) who try to seduce her. Then she also gets drunk and commits adultery with Gen'emon. When his husband comes back home and discovers what has happened, Otane stabs herself in the chest and is slayed by her husband, as adultery was punishable by death. Featuring also Kataoka Takatar˘ and Nakamura Kazutar˘.
  • Gion Koi Zukushi: on his way back from a pilgrimage to Ise Shrine to Edo, Tomegor˘ (Matsumoto K˘shir˘) stays at the ďtsuya, an utensil's shop of the tea ceremony, run by Jir˘hachi (Nakamura Ganjir˘) in Ky˘to. Jir˘hachi has invited Tomegor˘ because he owes Tomegor˘'s father a great deal in his youth and also because it is just the time of Gion Festival in Ky˘to. Tomegor˘ falls in love with Osono (Nakamura Toranosuke), the sister of Jir˘hachi's wife Otsugi (also played by Nakamura Ganjir˘), at first sight. Otsugi asks him to spy on Jir˘hachi whether he is in love with another woman or not. Since this spring, Jir˘hachi often came home late at night. As Otsugi suspects, Jir˘hachi is head over heels in love with Someka (Matsumoto K˘shir˘), a geisha in Gion, but Someka has a patron and dislikes Jir˘hachi. In the mean while, Osono asks Tomegor˘ to take herself along to Edo; she is in love with Bunshichi (Nakamura Hayato), a clerk of ďtsuya, but Otsugi doesn't know their relation and recommends her to marry the son of Mochimaruya. She asks Tomegor˘ to help her elope with Bunshichi. In exchange for telling Otsugi the name of a woman who Jir˘hachi loves,Tomegor˘ asks her to approve the marriage between Osono and Bunshichi. Hearing this, Jir˘hachi thinks that Tomegor˘ talked them in to humiliating him,and bears a grudge against Tomegor˘ and they quarrel with each other. They are reconciled at last to hear that Mochimaruya Tahŕ (Nakamura Kankur˘) has given up getting Osono as his son's bride and approved the marriage between Osono and Bunshichi. Featuring also Nakamura Kazutar˘ as Tahŕ's wife Ogen.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    Kabukiza (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 4 ~ 29 July 2022
    Shichigatsu ďkabuki
    July Grand Kabuki
    1st program

    T˘ryű Oguri Hangan

    2nd program

    Natsu Matsuri Naniwa Kagami

  • Sumiyoshi Torii Mae
  • Tsuribune Sabu Uchi
  • Nagamachi Ura
  • Setsugekka Mitsu no Nagame (Nakakuni)

    3rd program

    Kaze no Tani no Naushika (Shiroki Majo no Senki)

    Casting

    Ichikawa Ennosuke, Ichikawa Ebiz˘, Onoe Kikunosuke, Nakamura Jakuemon, Nakamura Fukusuke, Nakamura Kinnosuke, Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Udanji, Band˘ Yajűr˘, Nakamura Karoku, Nakamura Matagor˘, Band˘ Minosuke, Onoe Ukon, Nakamura Kotar˘, Nakamura Yonekichi, Kataoka Ichiz˘, Ichikawa Sai'nyű, Ichimura Kakitsu, Kamimura Kichiya, Ichimura Manjir˘, Kawarasaki Gonjűr˘, Ichikawa Monnosuke, Ichikawa Emisabur˘, Ichikawa Emiya, Ichikawa En'ya, Ichikawa Juen, Ichikawa Omez˘, Ichikawa Seiko, Ichikawa Kudanji, Nakamura Tanenosuke, ďtani Hiromatsu, Ichimura Takematsu, Nakamura Kangyoku, Nakamura Baika, Ichimura Kitsutar˘, Ichikawa Otora, Horikoshi Kangen, Onoe Ushinosuke, Terajima Mahoro, Kamimura Kichitar˘, Ichikawa Botan, Terajima Tomoyo

    Comments

    The usual July Grand Kabuki programs at the Kabukiza.

  • Oguri Hangan: by order of the Sh˘gun, Oguri Hangan (Ichikawa Ennosuke) becomes engaged to Princess Terute (Ichikawa Emiya), the daughter of the lord of Hitachi domain, Yokoyama Gunji. The domain was to be handed down to Oguri, but Gunji's brother Yokoyama Daizen and his sons, who plot to usurp the domain, steal the deeds and an heirloom from Gunji's mansion, kill Gunji and confine Princess Terute there. Daizen conspires further to assassinate Oguri, and leads out the unruly horse Onikage, but Oguri manages to tame it with his excellent equestrian skill. Discovering the truth that Daizen and his sons killed Gunji, he determines to avenge Gunji's death. Meanwhile, as she shelters from danger, Princess Terute is helped out by chance by the fisherman Namishichi (Ichikawa Ennosuke) who formerly served Oguri. As Namishichi is very faithful, he promises to reunite her with Oguri. Featuring also Nakamura Karoku, Ichikawa Monnosuke and Band˘ Minosuke.
  • Natsu Matsuri: this grisly murder story became a smashing hit when it was first performed in 1745 because of the chivalrous spirit of the many ďsaka characters appearing in this story, the contrast between a brutal murder and the jovial mood of a summer festival, and the splashing of real water used on the stage. Danshichi, a gallant fishmonger, does everything he can to protect the weak young son of his patron with the help of his companion Tokubŕ and the older Sabu. Although even Tokubŕ's wife Otatsu heroically helps out, in the end, Danshichi is betrayed by his evil father-in-law Giheiji and, in the most famous scene of the play, must kill him in a mud-covered fight in a lonely alley with the shouts of the local festival nearby. This program stars Ichikawa Ebiz˘ as Danshichi, with Ichikawa Udanji, Ichikawa Sadanji and Nakamura Jakuemon as Tokubŕ, Sabu and Otatsu.
  • Nakakuni: though Lady Kog˘ (Nakamura Kotar˘) is loved by Emperor Takakura, she fears the Empress' father Taira no Kiyomori and goes undercover. While she is absent, a period of turmoil ensues caused by famine and epidemic in the capital. Ordered to protect her by the Emperor, Minamoto no Nakakuni (Ichikawa Ebiz˘) sets out for ďhara with the spirits of insects and butterflies in order to pray for an abundant harvest and peace throughout the Empire. Lady Kog˘ awaits him there. Featuring also Nakamura Fukusuke.
  • Shiroki Majo no Senki: a thousand years have passed since the great industrial civilization was destroyed. The entire earth is now covered with a vast Sea of Decay, giving off noxious fumes among which giant insects swarm. Nevertheless, conflict has not ended, and two big countries, the Kingdom of Tolmekia and the Dorok Principalities, continue to oppose each other. The Valley of the Wind, a remote and small country, formed an alliance with Tolmekia long ago. Following that alliance, Nausicań (Nakamura Yonekichi), the daughter of the chieftain, embarks for the battlefront and stands by Kushana (Onoe Kikunosuke), the noble princess of Tolmekia who is called 'The White Witch'. As Kushana is the only one who inherits the blood of the late great King, she is a target for others and her life is in danger. Taking her place, her mother goes insane after drinking poisoned alcohol. With high aspirations and the trust of her subordinates, Kushana stands at the battlefront, and fights not only her enemies, but also the conspiracies of her allies. Featuring also Nakamura Kinnosuke, Band˘ Yajűr˘, Nakamura Matagor˘ and Onoe Ukon.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    National Theatre (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 3 ~ 27 July 2022
    Shichigatsu Kabuki Kansh˘ Ky˘shitsu
    July Kabuki Appreciation Class
    Program

    Kabuki no Mikata

    Momijigari

    Casting

    Onoe Sh˘roku, Nakamura Baishi, Ichikawa Komaz˘, Band˘ Kamez˘, Nakamura Mantar˘, Onoe Sakon, Nakamura Tamatar˘

    Comments

    Educational program at the National Theatre called Kabuki Kansh˘ Ky˘shitu ("Kabuki Appreciation Class"). This is a very interesting formula for the beginners because there is lively presentation on stage (Kabuki no Mikata) of Kabuki or some aspects of the art like music, stage tricks or fighting scenes. It is followed by the dance-drama "Momijigari".

  • Momijigari: the general Taira Koremochi (Onoe Sh˘roku) travels to the mountains to view the autumn leaves when he suddenly encounters a beautiful princess (Nakamura Baishi) and her entourage. Aided by the elegant dancing of the princess and a large amount of sake, Koremochi falls asleep, not knowing that she is actually a fierce demon. The god of the mountain (Band˘ Kamez˘ or Nakamura Mantar˘) dances vigorously to try to wake up Koremochi. But as the demon appears in its true form, Koremochi is saved by the magical power of his sword.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    Minamiza (Ky˘to)
    Dates 23 ~ 27 July 2022
    Band˘ Tamasabur˘ Tokubetsu Buy˘ K˘en
    Band˘ Tamasabur˘ Special Dance Performances
    Program

    K˘j˘

    Takao

    Fuji Musume

    Casting

    Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘

  • K˘j˘: the close relationship between the actors and the audience is shown by stage announcements, usually lavish ceremonies to commemorate various important events. This month at the Tango Bunka Kaikan, it is a stage speech done by Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘.
  • Takao: an elegant dance showing the ghost of a courtesan who died because a samurai lord fell in love with her. She describes her life in the pleasure quarters and then shows the torment she is suffering in the afterworld. Starring Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘ in the role of the ghost of the courtesan Takao.
  • Fuji Musume: the spirit of wisteria blossoms dances of love in the form of a beautiful young maiden. One of Kabuki's most famous and colorful dances, it will feature the dancing skills of Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    Comments

    A special Buy˘ program in Ky˘to at the Minamiza starring the amazing Living National Treasure onnagata Band˘ Tamasabur˘.

    Sh˘chiku Kabuki Dance Tour
    Dates 30 June ~ 31 July 2022
    Sh˘chiku Kabuki Buy˘ K˘en
    Sh˘chiku Dance Performances
    Program

    Goaisatsu

    Ayatsuri Sanbas˘

    Renjishi

    Casting

    Nakamura Shikan, Nakamura Matsue, Nakamura Hashinosuke, Nakamura Fukunosuke, Nakamura Utanosuke

    Comments

    The Summer Buy˘ Tour of Nakamura Shikan and his three sons.

  • Goaisatsu: a speech on stage.
  • Ayatsuri Sanbas˘:
    (The Puppet Sanbas˘)
    The Sanbas˘ is part of the ritual play "Okina", a prayer for prosperity and in Kabuki the vigorous Sanbas˘ dance is often performed separately. To make the dance especially auspicious, the old man Okina and attendant Senzai appear as well. In Kabuki, the Sanbas˘ dance appears in all kinds of versions. In this particular version, the Sanbas˘ is actually a giant marionette (Nakamura Hashinosuke or Nakamura Fukunosuke), dancing lightly until his antics tangle his strings, creating problems for his puppeteer (Nakamura Fukunosuke or Nakamura Hashinosuke).
  • Renjishi: 2 entertainers dance a tale of the legendary shishi or lion-like spirits that live at the foot of a holy Buddhist mountain. There is a comic interlude with 2 Buddhist pilgrims. Then, the shishi themselves appear and perform their dance with wild shaking of their long manes. The dance shows a parent shishi forcing his cub to undergo harsh training in order to grow up strong. This theme is often associated with the training a parent actor gives his son. This performance features Nakamura Shikan in the role of the parent shishi and his son Nakamura Utanosuke in the role of the cub.
  • Sources: Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    National Theatre (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 16 ~ 17 July 2022
    Sh˘ no Kai
    Program

    Tomo Yakko

    Fuji Musume

    Funa Benkei

    Casting

    Nakamura Takanosuke, Ichikawa Ennosuke, Onoe Sh˘roku, Ichikawa Monnosuke, Ichikawa En'ya, Onoe Sakon, Watanabe Aiko

    Comments

    7th edition of the Sh˘ no Kai, a gala program which stars Nakamura Tomijűr˘ V's son Nakamura Takanosuke. Nakamura Takanosuke's sister Watanabe Aiko also performs in this gala.

  • Tomo Yakko: a samurai footman rushes after his master in the pleasure quarters, but loses sight of him. He dances with pride in his master and enjoys his dance so much that he begins emphasizing it with vigorous foot stamping. Starring Nakamura Takanosuke in the role of the yakko.
  • Fuji Musume: the spirit of wisteria blossoms dances of love in the form of a beautiful young maiden. One of Kabuki's most famous and colorful dances, it will feature the dancing skills of Watanabe Aiko.
  • Funa Benkei: although he won a war against the enemy Heike clan, the young general Yoshitsune (Onoe Sakon) has gained the disfavor of his brother, the Sh˘gun, and tries to flee to Kyűshű by boat. Before he sets sail, he must say farewell to his lover Shizuka (Nakamura Takanosuke), who performs a dance expressing her grief at their separation. Once the boat sets sail, the spirit of the great Heike general Tomomori (Nakamura Takanosuke), killed by Yoshitsune in battle at sea, appears and attacks to take revenge for the destruction of his clan. They are only saved by the prayers of Yoshitsune's companion, the warrior-priest Benkei (Onoe Sh˘roku). The roles of both Shizuka and Tomomori are played by the same actor. Featuring also Ichikawa Ennosuke, Ichikawa Monnosuke and Ichikawa En'ya in the roles of the boatmen.
  • Sources: Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

     
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