ASAO KUZAEMON I

Stage names:

Asao Kuzaemon I In Japanese
Asai Kuzaemon In Japanese
Nakayama Tashir˘ II In Japanese
Takeda Nisabur˘ In Japanese

Other name:

Ichikawa Kigan I In Japanese

Guild: Kanedaya

Poetry names: Kigan (1), Kigyoku

Line number: SHODAI (I)

Existence: 1758 ~ 22nd day of the 8th lunar month of 1824 [1]

Connection:

Brother: Takeda Tashir˘

Masters: Asao Tamejűr˘ I, Nakayama Tatez˘ I

Son: Asao Kichisabur˘

Disciples: Asao Kunigor˘ III, Asao Gakujűr˘

Career:

1758 ~ 1782: he started his career in a troupe of children-actors (kodomo shibai) performing in ďsaka at the Takeda no Shibai. He and his brother performed under the respective names of Takeda Nisabur˘ and Takeda Tashir˘. He joined the actor Nakayama Tatez˘ I at an unknown date, received the name of Nakayama Tashir˘ II and performed in minor theaters.

9th lunar month of 1782: he performed as a musician in the isse ichidai performance of the actor Nakayama Bunshichi I, which was staged at the Kado no Shibai.

11th lunar month of 1793: Nakayama Tatez˘ I and Nakayama Tashir˘ II respectively took the names of Izumikawa Okez˘ and Asai Kuzaemon.

Fall 1794: Kuzaemon became disciple of the actor Asao Tamejűr˘ I.

11th lunar month of 1794: Asai Kuzaemon took the name of Asao Kuzaemon I in Ky˘to.

9th lunar month of 1801: premiere at the Kitagawa no Shibai of Shiba Shis˘'s drama "Hakone Reigen Izari no Adauchi"; Kuzaemon played the roles of Sat˘ G˘suke and Takiguchi K˘zuke [casting].

10th lunar month of 1803: Kuzaemon celebrated his coming tour to Edo (onagori ky˘gen) by playing at the Naka no Shibai 7 roles using some hayagawari techniques in the drama "Keisei Koi no Hikyaku".

Fall: Kuzaemon went to Edo.

11th lunar month of 1803: Kuzaemon performed at the Ichimuraza in the kaomise drama "Mutsu no Hana Monomi no Matsu".

7th day of the 4th lunar month of 1804 [2]: his master Asao Tamejűr˘ I died.

9th lunar month of 1804: Kuzaemon celebrated his coming departure from Edo (onagori ky˘gen), achieving a great success at the Ichimuraza by playing the role of Gotobŕ in the drama "Yoshitsune Koshigoej˘".

Fall 1804: Kuzaemon went back to ďsaka.

11th lunar month of 1804: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the role of the boatman Kochiemon in Tatsuoka Mansaku's kaomise drama "Minoriyoshi Kane no Naruki".

8th lunar month of 1807: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the roles of the smuggler Kezori and Gohei in the drama "Yamato Kotoba Suikoden", which was produced by Asao Okujir˘ II.

6th lunar month of 1808: Kuzaemon went to Edo (for a religious pilgrimage) and played at the Nakamuraza the role of Senoo Jűr˘ Kaneyasu in the drama "Genpei Nunobiki no Taki".

7th lunar month of 1808: premiere at the Nakamuraza of Segawa Jok˘ II's drama "Z˘ho Izari no Adauchi"; Kuzaemon played the roles of Sat˘ G˘suke and the sh˘ya Tokuemon [casting].

8th lunar month of 1808: Kuzaemon played in the same theater the roles of Fujiwara no Shihei and Shiratayű in the drama "Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami".

9th lunar month of 1808: Kuzaemon played in the same theater the roles of the yakko Edohei in the drama "Koi Ny˘b˘ Somewake Tazuna".

Fall 1808: Kuzaemon went back to ďsaka.

9th lunar month of 1809: Kuzaemon played at the Kado no Shibai the roles of Jinroku and Utaemon in the drama "Oriawase Tsuzure no Nishiki".

11th lunar month of 1809: Kuzaemon played at the Kado no Shibai the role of Ikegami Shichikur˘ in the kaomise drama "Keishoku Yuki-miru Yama", which was produced by Mimasu Kumesabur˘ and stars Nakayama Hyakka, Yoshizawa Ayame V, Arashi Kichisabur˘ II, Nakayama Shinkur˘ III, Nakamura Daikichi I, Kan˘ Minshi I and Asao Okuyama III.

3rd lunar month of 1810: tour in Ise with Nakayama Raisuke IV.

6th lunar month of 1810: tour in Nagoya with Kataoka Nizaemon VII and Nakayama Hyakka.

9th lunar month of 1810: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the role of Ky˘goku no Takumi in the drama "Hikosan Gongen Chikai no Sukedachi"; the roles of Rokusuke and Osono were played by Arashi Kichisabur˘ II and Nakamura Daikichi I.

1st lunar month of 1811: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the roles of Sawai Matagor˘, Narumi and Heisaku in the drama "Keisei Ekiro no Ume", whose plot and characters belonged to the "Igagoe" world.

1st lunar month of 1813: Kuzaemon's rank in the Kamigata hy˘banki, jitsuaku section, was j˘-j˘-kichi (superior - superior - excellent) [visual]. He played 3 roles at the Kado no Shibai in the drama "Ane Im˘to Date no ďkido", which was produced by Ichikawa Zentar˘.

4th lunar month of 1813: Kuzaemon performed in the same theater in the drama "Ono no T˘fű Aoyagi Suzuri".

7th lunar month of 1813: Kuzaemon played at the Shukuin no Shibai in Sakai the role of Senoo Jűr˘ Kaneyasu in the drama "Genpei Nunobiki no Taki".

11th lunar month of 1813: Kuzaemon performed at the Minamigawa no Shibai in the drama "Ono no T˘fű Aoyagi Suzuri". He also played the role of Tatara Shind˘zaemon in the drama "Karukaya D˘shin Tsukushi no Iezuto".

1st lunar month of 1814: Kuzaemon's rank in the Kamigata hy˘banki, s˘kanjiku sanpukutsui section ("a trio of global kanjiku") section, was itaru-j˘-j˘-kichi (unique - superior - superior - excellent). The two others actors in this trio were Kataoka Nizaemon VII and Nakayama Shinkur˘ III. Kuzaemon played the roles of the old woman Otama, Yuminosuke and Tokuemon in the drama "Keisei Tsukushi no Tsumagoto", which was staged in ďsaka at the Kado no Shibai. This was the first performance in Kabuki history of a play based on the "Asagao Nikki" world [casting].

4th lunar month of 1814: "Keisei Tsukushi no Tsumagoto" was staged with the same casting in Ky˘to at the Minamigawa no Shibai.

11th lunar month of 1814: Kuzaemon played at the Kitagawa no Shibai the roles of Sawai Matagor˘ and Narumi in the drama "Tsugi Awase Ekiji no Ume", whose plot and characters belonged to the "Igagoe" world.

1st lunar month of 1815: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the role of Gohei in the drama "Akiba Gongen Kaisen Banashi", which was produced by Kataoka Ichimatsu.

3rd lunar month of 1815: Kuzaemon moved to the Kado no Shibai and played the roles of Tatara Shind˘zaemon, Kurofune and Gy˘buzaemon in the dramas "Karukaya D˘shin Tsukushi no Iezuto", "Kurofune Deiri Minato" and "Komochi Yamanba".

4th lunar month of 1815: Kuzaemon moved back to the Naka no Shibai and played the roles of Tachibana Kazue and the sh˘ya Sh˘bei in the drama "Furiwakegami Matori Jikki", which was produced by Kataoka Ichimatsu.

8th lunar month of 1815: Kuzaemon played in the same theater the roles of Kakuju, Takebe Genz˘ and Shiratayű in the drama "Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami".

9th lunar month of 1815: Kuzaemon played in the same theater the roles of Sasaya Hanbei and the gatekeeper Sh˘bei in the drama "Katakiuchi Ura no Asagiri".

8th lunar month of 1816: Kuzaemon went to Edo and performed at the Kiriza in the drama "Katakiuchi Tengajaya-mura".

9th lunar month of 1816: Kuzaemon celebrated his coming departure from Edo (onagori ky˘gen) by playing at the Kiriza 7 roles using some hayagawari techniques in the drama "Michiyuki Koi no Hikyaku".

7th lunar month of 1817: Kuzaemon performed at the Naka no Shibai in the dramas "Meisaku Kiri no Akebono" and "Senjin Fujito no Homare".

1st lunar month of 1818: Kuzaemon played at the Kitagawa no Shibai the roles of Sukune Tar˘, Shund˘ Genba and Shiratayű in the drama "Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami". He also played the roles of Jinroku and Utaemon in the drama "Oriawase Tsuzure no Nishiki".

5th lunar month of 1818: Kuzaemon played at the Takeda no Shibai (ďsaka) the role of Sait˘ Tarozaemon Toshiyuki in the drama "ďt˘-no-Miya Asahi no Yoroi".

8th lunar month of 1818: Kuzaemon played the roles of Mataroku and Sajidayű in the drama "Musume Kagekiyo Yashima Nikki", which was produced at the Naka no Shibai by Asao Tokusabur˘; his stage partners were Arashi Koroku IV (Oito) and Arashi Kichisabur˘ II (Yoshitoki, Kagekiyo).

Fall 1818: Kuzaemon played at the Kitagawa no Shibai the role of Midaroku in the drama "Ichi-no-Tani Futaba Gunki".

11th lunar month of 1818: Kuzaemon played in the same theater the roles of Usami Goemon, Heisaku and K˘hei in the drama "Igagoe D˘chű Sugoroku"; the roles of Oyone and Jűbŕ were played by Arashi Koroku IV and Arashi Kichisabur˘ II.

1st lunar month of 1819: Kuzaemon played at the Kado no Shibai the role of Iwanaga Saemon in the drama "Dan no Ura Kabuto Gunki"; his stage partners in the roles of Akoya and Shigetada were Nakamura Matsue III and Ichikawa Ebijűr˘ I.

7th lunar month of 1819: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the role of Gonshir˘ in the drama "Hirakana Seisuiki".

9th lunar month of 1819: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the roles of Tamashima Itt˘ and Akaganeya K˘bŕ [print] in the drama "T˘t˘migata Koi no Shiranami".

11th lunar month of 1819: Kuzaemon played at the Minamigawa no Shibai the roles of Tamashima Itt˘ and Akaganeya K˘bŕ in the drama "Z˘ho Koi no Shiranami" (an extension of the drama "T˘t˘migata Koi no Shiranami").

1st lunar month of 1820: Kuzaemon's rank in the Kamigata hy˘banki, s˘kanjiku section ("global kanjiku") section, was k˘-j˘-j˘-kichi (meritorious - superior - superior - excellent).

3rd lunar month of 1820: Kuzaemon played at the Kado no Shibai the roles of Kawagoe Shigeyori and Yazaemon ("Sushiya" scene) in the drama "Yoshitsune Senbon Zakura".

5th lunar month of 1820: Kuzaemon played at the Ichinogawa Shibai (ďsaka) the role of Tatara Shind˘zaemon in the drama "Karukaya D˘shin Tsukushi no Iezuto".

11th lunar month of 1820: tour in Nagoya; Kuzaemon played the role of Yazaemon ("Sushiya" scene) in the drama "Yoshitsune Senbon Zakura", which was staged in the precinct of the Seijuin Temple.

1st lunar month of 1821: Kuzaemon played at the Minamigawa no Shibai the role of Magoemon in the drama "Shinjű Ten no Amijima".

3rd lunar month of 1821: premiere at the Kado no Shibai of the drama "Kajiwara Heiz˘ K˘bai Tazuna", a new version of the third act of "Miura no ďsuke ďbai Tazuna", revised by Kanazawa Ryűgoku I; Kuzaemon played the role of Rokur˘dayű [casting].

5th lunar month of 1821: Kuzaemon played at the Kado no Shibai the roles of Kat˘ G˘suke and Iwaki Chűtayű in the drama "Taiheiki Chűshin K˘shaku", which was produced by Nakamura Matsuyo.

7th lunar month of 1821: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the role of Watanabe Minbu in the drama "Hagi ha Sendai Na ha Matsumoto", whose plot and characters belonged to the "Meiboku Sendai Hagi" world.

11th lunar month of 1821: Kuzaemon played at the Kitagawa no Shibai the roles of Ono no Kudayű, Yazama Kinai and Shikama no Takubei in the drama "Taiheiki Chűshin K˘shaku".

1st lunar month of 1822: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai 3 roles in the drama "Keisei Somewake no Tazuna".

2nd lunar month of 1822: Kuzaemon played in the same theater the roles of Daibutsumochi S˘emon and Konomura ďinosuke in the drama "Kinmon Gosan no Kiri". He also played the role of Kaminari Sh˘kur˘ in the drama "Otokodate Itsutsu Karigane".

3rd lunar month of 1822: Kuzaemon played in the same theater the role of Sakaya Giemon in the drama "ďishizuri Sakura Tanzaku", a play based on the Chűshingura world.

24th day of the 4th lunar month of 1822 [3]: his son Asao Kichisabur˘ died.

5th lunar month of 1822: Kuzaemon played the role of Tsuge Shinzaemon in the drama "Keisei Sano no Funabashi", which was staged within the precinct of the Gory˘ Shrine in the district of Senba (ďsaka). He also played the roles of Heizaemon and Yaoya Oshichi'mother in the drama "Yaoya no Kondate".

8th lunar month of 1822: Kuzaemon played at the Kado no Shibai the roles of Date no Yosabei and Hachiz˘ in the drama "Koi Ny˘b˘ Somewake Tazuna", which was produced by Onoe Umanosuke.

9th lunar month of 1822: Kuzaemon played at the Naka no Shibai the role of Iwaki Hy˘bu in the drama "Kama-ga-Fuchi Futatsu Domoe".

11th lunar month of 1822: Kuzaemon appeared on stage for the last time, playing the roles of the old man Rokur˘dayű and Date no Yosabei in the dramas "Kajiwara Heiz˘ Kidai no Ishikiri" [casting] and "Iroage Somewake Tazuna", which were staged in Ky˘to at the Kitagawa no Shibai.

1823 ~ 1824: he fell ill and did not appear on stage anymore until his passing away.

22nd day of the 8th lunar month of 1824 [1]: Kuzaemon died in Ky˘to.

Comments:

Asao Kuzaemon I was a talented and popular actor specialized in katakiyaku, jitsuaku and oyajigata roles, excelling in thieves roles in sewamono dramas and mastering some hayagawari techniques, who made a fame for himself in Kamigata during the Bunka and Bunsei eras. He did also a few successful stays in Edo.

[1] The 22nd day of the 8th lunar month of the 7th year of the Bunsei era was the 14th of September 1824 in the western calendar.

[2] The 7th day of the 4th lunar month of the 1st year of the Bunka era was the 17th of May 1804 in the western calendar.

[3] The 24th day of the 4th lunar month of the 5th year of the Bunsei era was the 13th of June 1822 in the western calendar.

Asao Kuzaemon I playing the role of Sawai Matagor˘ in the drama "Keisei Ekiro no Ume", which was performed in the 1st lunar month of 1811 in ďsaka at the Naka no Shibai (print made by Rank˘sai)

Prints & Illustrations

Print made by Shunk˘sai Hokushű in 1815

Print made by Shunk˘sai Hokushű in 1819

The Ichikawa Kigan line of actors

The Asao Kuzaemon line of actors

 
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