2 shows in T˘ky˘ (Shinbashi Enbuj˘), 4 in ďsaka (Sh˘chikuza, Shinkabukiza) and 1 tour (Western Provinces)!

  • Nakamura Kichiemon, Sakata T˘jűr˘, Nakamura Shikan, Nakamura Baigyoku, Nakamura Shibajaku, Nakamura Matagor˘, Nakamura Kash˘, Nakamura Kaishun and Nakamura Fukusuke perform at the Shinbashi Enbuj˘!
  • Ichikawa Danjűr˘, Ichikawa Ebiz˘, Nakamura Kanjaku, Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Danz˘ and the Omodakaya guild perform at the Sh˘chikuza!
  • Nakamura Kanzabur˘, Nakamura Senjaku, Nakamura Hashinosuke, Nakamura Shichinosuke and Nakamura Kantar˘ perform at the Shinkabukiza !
  • Kataoka Nizaemon, Kataoka Ainosuke, Kataoka Hidetar˘ and Kataoka Takatar˘ are on tour in the Western Provinces !
  • Shinbashi Enbuj˘ (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 1 ~ 25 September 2011 (Shűzan Matsuri Kugatsu ďkabuki)
    Shűzan's Festival September Grand Kabuki

    Shitadashi Sanbas˘

    Koi Bikyaku Yamato ďrai (Ninokuchi-mura)

    Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami (Terakoya)

    Kioi Jishi


    Hototogisu Koj˘ no Rakugetsu


    Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami (Kurumabiki)

    Z˘ho Futatsu Domoe (Ishikawa Goemon)


    Nakamura Kichiemon, Sakata T˘jűr˘, Nakamura Shikan, Nakamura Baigyoku, Nakamura Shibajaku, Nakamura Matagor˘, Nakamura Kash˘, Nakamura Kaishun, Nakamura Fukusuke, Nakamura Kinnosuke, Ichikawa Danshir˘, Nakamura Karoku, Onoe Sh˘roku, Ichikawa Somegor˘, Nakamura T˘z˘, Kamimura Kichiya, Nakamura Utae, Nakamura Matsue, Sawamura Yoshijir˘, Band˘ Kametoshi, Matsumoto Kingo, ďtani Keiz˘, Nakamura Tanenosuke, Nakamura Kotar˘, Nakamura Tamatar˘, ďtani Hirotar˘, Nakamura Yonekichi, Nakamura Hayato


    This is the 5th edition of a special program called "Shűzan Matsuri" (the festival of Shűzan), which is produced at the Shinbashi Enbuj˘ to commemorate the great actor Nakamura Kichiemon I, whose's haimy˘ was Shűzan. The star of this program is his adopted son Nakamura Kichiemon II. this is also a great opportunity to celebrate two shűmei: Nakamura Kash˘ III and his son Nakamura Tanetar˘ IV take the respective names of Nakamura Matagor˘ III and Nakamura Kash˘ IV.

  • Shitadashi Sanbas˘:
    (The Sanbas˘ with his Tongue sticking out)
    Based on the ritual play "Okina" in the theatre, the sanbas˘ is both an important prayer for prosperity and a vigorous dance. This particular version takes its title from the sanbas˘ sticking his tongue out. Some say that this is from absorption in the joy of his dance. Others say that this is an auspicious sign. In any case, this vigorous and joyful dance is exhilarating to watch and is a perfect addition to this auspicious program. Featuring Ichikawa Somegor˘ and the new Nakamura Kash˘.
  • Ninokuchi-mura: in the pleasure quarters, the most important possessions were money and reputation. In danger of losing his lover, the courtesan Umegawa (Nakamura Fukusuke), the money courier Chűbŕ (Sakata T˘jűr˘) breaks the seals on a package of money entrusted to him after being taunted by a rival, even though the use of such money is punishable by death. In this scene, on their way to love suicide, the couple go through the snow covered landscape on their way to the man's home town where they will meet their end. Featuring also Nakamura Karoku in the role of Chűbŕ's father Magoemon.
  • Terakoya: Genz˘ and his wife Tonami run a small school and are protecting Kan Sh˘j˘'s son and heir, saying that he is their son. However, word has gotten out Kan Sh˘j˘'s son is there and Genz˘ has been ordered to behead him. Moreover, Matsu˘maru is to come to inspect the head. Their only alternative is to kill one of the other students as a substitute, but all of the students are farmer's children who could never pass for the son of a court aristocrat. However, a new boy arrives that day and Genz˘ makes the terrible decision to kill him in the place of his lord. As it turns out, Matsu˘maru has sent his own son to be sacrificed, because of his family's long loyalty to Kan Sh˘j˘. But he must face the most terrible situation for a father, inspecting the head of his own son and lying when he says that it is the genuine head of the son of Kan Sh˘j˘. Finally Matsu˘maru reveals his true feelings to Genz˘ and he and his wife Chiyo mourn their dead son. Starring Nakamura Kichiemon as Matsu˘maru, the new Nakamura Matagor˘ as Genz˘, Nakamura Kaishun as Chiyo and Nakamura Shibajaku as Tonami.
  • Kioi Jishi: this dance shows an Edo festival with its lively lion dance and other entertainments. The festival is full of handsome firemen and attractive geisha who do a series of graceful dances. One of the highlights of this dance is the story of the Soga brothers avenging the death of their father by attacking their enemy during a hunting party for the Sh˘gun at the foot of Mt. Fuji. Featuring Nakamura Baigyoku, Onoe Sh˘roku and the new Nakamura Kash˘.
  • Hototogisu Koj˘ no Rakugetsu: although in the late 16th century Toyotomi Hideyoshi ruled Japan, after his death, control quickly passed to Tokugawa Ieyasu, and the fate of Hideyoshi's clan, his wife Yodogimi and young son Hideyori was sealed in a series of battles over their stronghold, ďsaka castle. First performed in 1905, this is a play by Tsubouchi Sh˘y˘, famous as the first translator of Shakespeare's plays. The mad scenes of Yodogimi as the clan goes down to defeat are reminiscent of those of Lady Macbeth and have turned out to be the source of the enduring popularity of the play. Featuring Nakamura Shikan as Yodogimi in a role created by Nakamura Utaemon V and carried on by his son, Nakamura Utaemon VI. Featuring the new Nakamura Matagor˘ as Toyotomi Hideyori. Featuring also Nakamura Kichiemon, Nakamura Baigyoku, Nakamura Shibajaku, Nakamura Kinnosuke and Nakamura T˘z˘.
  • K˘j˘: the close relationship between the actors and the audience is shown by these stage announcements, lavish ceremonies to commemorate various important events. This monthĺs program commemorates the actor Nakamura Kash˘ III taking the name of Nakamura Matagor˘ III and his son Nakamura Tanetar˘ IV taking his name of Nakamura Kash˘ IV. The top actors in Kabuki all appear to offer their congratulations.
  • Kurumabiki: this short scene shows the three brothers that dominate the drama "Sugawara Denju Tenarai Kagami", each with a distinctive personality. Sakuramaru (Sakata T˘jűr˘) and Ume˘maru (the new Nakamura Matagor˘) have been rendered masterless by Kan Sh˘j˘'s exile. The third brother Matsu˘maru (Nakamura Kichiemon) serves the villain Shihei (Nakamura Karoku), who is responsible for the downfall of Kan Sh˘j˘. Sakuramaru and Ume˘maru try to destroy Shihei's carriage but are stopped by Matsu˘maru and the magical glare of Shihei. Finally the brothers agree to suspend their disputes until they all meet at their father's seventieth birthday party. Featuring also the new Nakamura Kash˘ in the role of Sugi˘maru.
  • Ishikawa Goemon: in the time of the warlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Ishikawa Goemon was a famous larger-than-life thief. When he was executed by being boiled alive, he is said to have defiantly said that the sands on the beach may run out but thieves will never disappear from this world. In this play, a rare revival, Goemon hides in a giant basket, which then flies through the air. As the basket goes to the ceiling of the theater, suddenly Goemon burst out and travels triumphantly through the sky. This production stars Ichikawa Somegor˘ and Onoe Sh˘roku as Goemon and Konoshita T˘kichi.
  • Source: Earphone Guide website

    Sh˘chikuza (ďsaka)
    Dates 1 ~ 25 September 2011 (Kugatsu ďkabuki)
    September Grand Kabuki


    Wakaki Hi no Nobunaga

    Kumo ni Magou Ueno no Hatsuhana (K˘chiyama)


    Kaka Saiyűki


    K˘suke Mochi


    Ichikawa Danjűr˘, Ichikawa Ebiz˘, Nakamura Kanjaku, Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Danz˘, Ichikawa Unosuke, Kataoka Ichiz˘, ďtani Tomoemon, Ichikawa Ukon, Ichikawa Emiya, Ichikawa Emisabur˘, Ichikawa Shun'en, Ichikawa En'ya, Nakamura Kazutar˘, Ichikawa Omez˘, Nakamura Kikaku, Band˘ Kamesabur˘, Ichikawa K˘tar˘


  • Akutar˘: this dance is based on a comic Ky˘gen play and was written for Ichikawa En'˘ I, the grandfather of the current Ichikawa Ennosuke and was one of his specialities. This dance shows a wild drunkard named Akutar˘ (Ichikawa Ukon). He appears with a bushy beard and long halberd and waves it around wildly. But his uncle (Ichikawa Emisabur˘) has a plan to cure him of drinking.
  • Wakaki Hi no Nobunaga:
    (The Young Nobunaga)
    This classic of post-war Kabuki drama was written especially for Ichikawa Danjűr˘ XI by the popular novelist Osaragi Jir˘. The play shows Oda Nobunaga (Ichikawa Ebiz˘) as a youth, before becoming the callous, hardened warrior that conquered Japan. Pressures from within and without force Nobunaga to act aloof of political affairs. His true intentions are hidden from even his closest friends, but his deception leads to the death of his advisor, Hirate (Ichikawa Sadanji). Featuring also Ichikawa Danz˘, Nakamura Kanjaku and Kataoka Ichiz˘.
  • K˘chiyama: the tea priest K˘chiyama (Ichikawa Danjűr˘) is a skilled thief and extortionist, but cannot turn down a request to help those in need. He disguises himself as a high-ranking priest to try to gain the freedom of a girl held by a powerful samurai lord (Ichikawa Ebiz˘) because she will not become his mistress. Using the famous poetic cadences of the late 19th century playwright Mokuami, K˘chiyama not only succeeds in his mission to rescue the girl, but he manages to extort a fair amount for himself. Featuring also Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Danz˘, ďtani Tomoemon and Ichikawa Emiya.
  • Kaka Saiyűki:
    (Journey to the West)
    One of the most popular Chinese classics is the story of the Journey to the West, about a Buddhist priest that traveled along the Silk Road from China to India to collect Buddhist scriptures. He is accompanied by a magical monkey spirit and some other creatures who protect him as they encounter all sorts of hazards on their journey. This play shows the group as they meet a beautiful princess, who is actually the spirit of spider. This play was originally written for Ichikawa Ennosukeĺs great grandfather and was a sensation with all kinds of stage tricks. Featuring all the young actors of the Omodakaya guild.
  • Kanjinch˘: probably the most popular Kabuki play today, it includes dance, comedy and the heart-warming pathos of a band of heroes during their last days. Disguised as a band of traveling priests the fugitive general Yoshitsune and his small band of retainers are stopped at a road barrier. They escape only through the quick thinking of the head retainer, a warrior priest named Musashib˘ Benkei, who improvises the text of an elaborate imperial decree. Having escaped danger Benkei and the others describe their days of glory and hardships on the road to escape in a moving dance. This program stars Ichikawa Ebiz˘ in the role of Benkei, with Nakamura Kanjaku and Ichikawa Danjűr˘ as Yoshitsune and the barrier keeper Togashi.
  • K˘suke Mochi: based on a classic of Kansai-style rakugo comic storytelling, this was a famous part of the ďsaka comedian Fujiyama Kanbi's repertory. The play focuses on Daikokuya K˘suke (Nakamura Kanjaku), the proprietor of a rice cake shop who is forced to sell his wife Okimi (Ichikawa En'ya) into prostitution for the money and then the complications when he encounters a famous sum˘ wrestler (Ichikawa Ukon).
  • Sources: Earphone Guide website
    Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website for "Akutar˘", "Wakaki Hi no Nobunaga" and "K˘suke Mochi"

    Shinkabukiza (ďsaka)
    Dates 2 ~ 26 September 2011 (Kugatsu Sh˘chiku ďkabuki)
    September Sh˘chiku Grand Kabuki

    Gohiiki Kanjinch˘ (Ataka no Seki)

    Meoto D˘j˘ji

    Ninj˘ Banashi Bunshichi Mottoi


    Futatsu Ch˘ch˘ Kuruwa Nikki (Hikimado)


    Ippon Gatana Dohy˘ Iri


    Nakamura Kanzabur˘, Nakamura Senjaku, Nakamura Hashinosuke, Nakamura Shichinosuke, Nakamura Kantar˘, Kataoka Kamez˘, Onoe Matsuya, Nakamura Shinobu, Nakamura Kamenoj˘


    This program, led by the Nakamuraya guild, celebrates the first year of business of the newly-relocated ďsaka Shinkabukiza, which was moved in 2010 from Nanba (Chű˘ Ward in ďsaka) to a mixed-use building in Uehonmachi.

  • Ataka no Seki: "Gohiiki Kanjinch˘" was first performed in 1773 and is most famous for its comic aragoto version of the famous play "Kanjinch˘" (The Subscription List). As they are fleeing, the powerful warrior priest Benkei (Nakamura Hashinosuke) gets his master Yoshitsune (Onoe Matsuya) through the barrier by pretending to be very weak and allowing himself to be tied up. He cries like a baby when he is tormented by the barrier attendants. But when Benkei decides that his master is safe, he explodes with energy, showing off the bombastic aragoto style of acting. He breaks the ropes and pulls off the heads of the attendants, tossing them into a barrel and washing them like a bunch of potatoes. Featuring also Nakamura Senjaku as Togashi Saemon.
  • Meoto D˘j˘ji: "Musume D˘j˘ji" is based on a legend about a woman transformed into a serpent out of jealousy and who destroys a temple bell keeping her from the object of her love. The original dance shows the spirit of the woman who appears at D˘j˘ji temple as a dancer who wants to celebrate the dedication of a new bell and does a series of dances showing the many faces of femininity. In this version there are two dancers and one is revealed to be a man in disguise and, in the highlight of the dance, transforms the romantic highpoint of the original piece into a comic scene by using masks. Starring Nakamura Shichinosuke as the female dancer and Nakamura Kantar˘ as the male dancer.
  • Bunshichi Mottoi: Ch˘bŕ spends his days and nights gambling, but is finally made aware of his family's problems when his daughter takes a job in the pleasure quarters. Having received the money for her contract, he shows his good side to save a young man on the edge of suicide after losing a large sum of money, but nobody believes Ch˘bŕ, thinking that he has gambled the money away. The performance stars Nakamura Kanzabur˘ and Nakamura Senjaku in the roles of Ch˘bŕ and his wife Okane. Featuring also Nakamura Hashinosuke, Nakamura Kantar˘, Kataoka Kamez˘ and Nakamura Shinobu.
  • Hikimado: originally written for the puppet theater, this play shows a tragedy of commoners caught between their duty and their feelings toward their loved ones. A sum˘ wrestler named Nuregami Ch˘gor˘ (Nakamura Hashinosuke) has killed a man and takes refuge at the home of his mother. Unfortunately, her son (Nakamura Senjaku) has been ordered to arrest him. All of these complicated conflicts are symbolized by the lightness and darkness created by the humble skylight (hikimado in Japanese) as a rope is pulled to move a wooden shutter. Featuring also Nakamura Shichinosuke in the role of Ohaya.
  • Omatsuri: Nakamura Kanzabur˘ as a gallant fireman boss at a festival telling a rueful tale of failure in love and showing the vigorous work songs of firefighters.
  • Ippon Gatana Dohy˘ Iri: this is a modern play by Hasegawa Shin and shows Komagata Mohŕ (Nakamura Kantar˘), a starving, would-be sum˘ wrestler. He encounters a courtesan Otsuta (Nakamura Shichinosuke), who gives him her purse and hair ornaments and makes him promise to become a champion sum˘ wrestler. In turn, she promises to go see him make his ceremonial entry into the ring. But ten years later, Mohŕ has become a gangster instead. Now a powerful fighter, he rescues Otsuta and her family. Ironically, this has become the only way that he can repay her kindness and the shameful form that his entry into the ring has taken.
  • Source: Earphone Guide website

    Kabuki Tour in the western provinces
    Dates 31 August ~ 25 September 2011

    Ame no Gor˘

    Yoshitsune Senbon Zakura

  • Chaten
  • Sushiya
  • Casting

    Kataoka Nizaemon, Kataoka Ainosuke, Kataoka Hidetar˘, Kataoka Takatar˘, Band˘ Yajűr˘, Ichikawa Komaz˘, Band˘ Shinsha, Band˘ Takesabur˘


  • Ame no Gor˘: Soga no Gor˘ is one of the most famous heroes in the Kabuki world, super-strong and quick to fight. However, this dance shows the soft side of this hero as well as he travels nightly to the pleasure quarter to visit his lover. Starring Kataoka Ainosuke as Gor˘.
  • Yoshitsune Senbon Zakura: this is section of an epic originally written for the Bunraku puppet theatre. The full-length play shows the fate of various Heike generals in hiding after the victory of their enemy, the Genji.
  • Chaten: Wakaba-no-Naishi (Ichikawa Komaz˘), the wife of the Heike commander Koremochi travels with her young son and their retainer Kokingo (Kataoka Ainosuke), searching for her husband. While resting in a small mountain village, they are met by Gonta (Kataoka Nizaemon), a local bully who skillfully cons them out of their money.
  • Sushiya:
    (The Sushi Shop)
    Gonta's father Yazaemon (Band˘ Yajűr˘) runs a sushi shop, but was formerly a retainer of Taira Koremochi. With his clan defeated, Koremochi (Kataoka Hidetar˘) now lives with Yazaemon's family disguised as a humble apprentice. Innocently, Yazaemon's daughter, Osato (Kataoka Takatar˘) is in love with him. But knowing of the bounty on Koremochi's head, her brother Gonta kills him and turns his wife and child over to the Genji commander. Furious at his son, Yazaemon stabs him, but before his death, Gonta reveals that he only pretended to kill Koremochi and sacrificed his own wife and son to save the real Koremochi and his family.
  • Source: Earphone Guide website

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