ICHIMURA UZAEMON XVII

Stage names:

Ichimura Uzaemon XVII
Band˘ Hikosabur˘ VII
Band˘ Shinsui VII
Band˘ Kamesabur˘ III

Real name: Band˘ Mamoru

Guilds: Tachibanaya

Line number: J█SHICHIDAIME (XVII)

Existence: 11 July 1916 ~ 8 July 2001

Connection:

Great-great-grandfathers: Onoe Kikugor˘ III, Ichimura Uzaemon XI

Great-grandfather: Ichimura Takenoj˘ V (Ichimura Uzaemon XII)

Grandfather: Onoe Kikugor˘ V (Ichimura Uzaemon XIII)

Father: Band˘ Hikosabur˘ VI

Sons: Band˘ Rakuzen (Band˘ Hikosabur˘ VIII), Ichimura Manjir˘ II, Kawarazaki Gonjűr˘ IV

Grandsons: Band˘ Hikosabur˘ IX, Band˘ Kamez˘ III, Ichimura Takematsu VI, Ichimura Hikaru

Great-grandson: Band˘ Kamesabur˘ VI

Career:

October 1921: he makes his first stage appearance, at the Imperial Theater, where he receives the name of Band˘ Kamesabur˘ III and plays in the drama "Meigetsu Hachiman Matsuri".

March 1935: Band˘ Kamesabur˘ III takes the name of Band˘ Shinsui VII at the Kabukiza, playing in the dance-drama "Otowadake Danmari". Shinsui is one of the haimy˘ used by the Band˘ Hikosabur˘ line of actors and Band˘ Shinsui VII is the first actor to use it as a stage name.

April 1936: revival at the Kabukiza of the drama "Uwanari", which belongs to the Kabuki Jűhachiban; Shinsui plays the role of the disciple Kingaku [more details].

October 1942: Band˘ Shinsui VII takes the name of Band˘ Hikosabur˘ VII at the Kabukiza, playing in the dance-drama "Futa Omote".

May 1947: revival at the T˘ky˘ Gekij˘ of the drama "Jayanagi"; Hikosabur˘ plays the role of Heinai [more details].

September 1947: premiere at the Imperial Theater of Atsumi Seitar˘'s version of "Nans˘ Satomi Hakkenden"; Hikosabur˘ plays the roles of Inukawa S˘suke and Yamabayashi Fusahachi [casting].

July 1951: revival at the Shinbashi Enbuj˘ of Kawatake Mokuami's drama "Jitsugetsusei Ky˘wa Seidan"; Hikosabur˘ plays the roles of the thief Akatsuki Hoshiemon and ďzakaya Kihachi (in reality Akatsuki Hoshiemon) [casting].

March 1953: premiere at the Kabukiza of Osaragi Jir˘'s drama "Edo no Yűbae"; Hikosabur˘ plays the role of Yoshida Ippeita [casting].

December 1954: premiere at the Meijiza of Kawaguchi Matsutar˘'s revision of Chikamatsu Monzaemon's drama "Daiky˘ji Mukashi Goyomi", which is entitled "Osan Mohei"; Hikosabur˘ plays the role of the daiky˘ji Ishun [casting].

October 1955: Band˘ Hikosabur˘ VII takes the name of Ichimura Uzaemon XVII at the Kabukiza, playing the roles of Kajiwara Heiz˘ Kagetoki, Wada no Hy˘e Hidemori, Minamoto no Raik˘ and Izumiya Tazaemon in "Ishikiri Kajiwara", "Moritsuna Jin'ya", "Tsuchi Gumo" and "Kirare Yosa"; the program commemorates the memorial services of the deaths of Onoe Baik˘ VI and Ichimura Uzaemon XV; this is also the hatsubutai of Uzaemon's second son Ichimura Takematsu V.

December 1955: Uzaemon celebrates both his shűmei and the 5th anniversary of the reopening of the Meijiza, playing the roles of Momonoi Wakasanosuke (1st and 3rd acts), Fuwa Kazuemon (6th act), Teraoka Heiemon (7th act) and Kobayashi Heihachir˘ (11th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

May 1956: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Kajiwara Heiz˘ Kagetoki in the drama "Sushiya".

April 1957: Uzaemon plays at the Misonoza the role of Kajiwara Heiz˘ Kagetoki in the drama "Sushiya".

June 1958: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the bombastic role of Soga Gor˘ Tokimune in the spectacular drama "Ya-no-Ne"; the role of Soga Jűr˘ Sukenari is played by Onoe Baik˘ VII. He also plays the role of Shund˘ Genba in the drama "Terakoya".

September 1958: Uzaemon plays at the Meijiza the role of Kajiwara Heiz˘ Kagetoki in the drama "Sushiya".

May 1959: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Hayami no T˘ta in the dance-drama "Yoshinoyama".

December 1959: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the roles of Yakushiji Jirozaemon (4th act), Ono no Sadakur˘ (5th act), Fuwa Kazuemon (6th act) and Kobayashi Heihachir˘ (11th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

June 1960: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the bombastic role of Kamakura Gongor˘ Kagemasa in the spectacular drama "Shibaraku"; the role of the villain Kiyohara no Takehira is played by Ichikawa Danz˘ VIII.

December 1961: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the roles of Fuwa Kazuemon (6th act) and Teraoka Heiemon (7th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

May 1962: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the bombastic role of Soga Gor˘ Tokimune in the spectacular drama "Ya-no-Ne"; the role of Soga Jűr˘ Sukenari is played by Ichikawa Sadanji III; this drama is staged to celebrate the shűmei of Ichikawa Danjűr˘ XI.

June 1962: revival at the Kabukiza under the supervision of Takechi Tetsuji of Namiki Gohei I's drama "Keisei Yamato Z˘shi"; Uzaemon plays the role of Koshino Kanzaemon [more details].

January 1963: Uzaemon plays at the Shinbashi Enbuj˘ the role of Togashi Saemon in the dance-drama "Kanjinch˘"; the roles of Musashib˘ Benkei and Minamoto no Yoshitsune are played by Onoe Sh˘roku II and Onoe Baik˘ VII.

June 1963: Namiki Sh˘z˘ I's drama "Yadonashi Danshichi Shigure no Karakasa" is produced for the first time at the Kabukiza; Uzaemon plays the role of Daimonjiya Jihei (commonly called Sakai no Daiji) [casting].

December 1963: Uzaemon plays at the Minamiza the bombastic role of Soga Gor˘ Tokimune in the spectacular drama "Ya-no-Ne"; the role of Soga Jűr˘ Sukenari is played by Kawarazaki Gonjűr˘ III.

October 1965: Uzaemon takes part in the first Kabuki tour in Western Europe; he plays the roles of Matsu˘maru, Tanzaemon and Yuranosuke in the plays "Kurumabiki", "Heike Nyogo no Shima" and "Kanadehon Chűshingura" [casting].

December 1965: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the roles of ďboshi Yuranosuke (4th, 7th, 10th and 11th acts) and Yoshida Chűzaemon (6th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

February 1967: premiere at the Kabukiza of Hagiwara Yukio's dance-drama "Dattan"; Uzaemon plays the role of the d˘d˘ji [casting].

November 1968: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the roles of Momonoi Wakasanosuke (1st and 3rd acts) and Ono no Sadakur˘ (5th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

November 1969: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the bombastic role of Kamakura Gongor˘ Kagemasa in the spectacular drama "Shibaraku"; the role of the villain Kiyohara no Takehira is played by Onoe Kur˘emon II; this drama is staged to celebrate the shűmei of Ichikawa Ebiz˘ X.

December 1969: revival at the Kabukiza of the Tokiwazu-based dance-drama "Kumo no Ito Azusa no Yumihari"; Uzaemon plays the role of Minamoto Yorimitsu [more details].

May 1970: Uzaemon plays at the ďsaka Shinkabukiza the bombastic role of Kamakura Gongor˘ Kagemasa in the spectacular drama "Shibaraku"; the role of the villain Kiyohara no Takehira is played by Kawarazaki Gonjűr˘ III; this drama is staged to celebrate the shűmei in ďsaka of Ichikawa Ebiz˘ X.

October 1970: Uzaemon plays at the Misonoza the bombastic role of Kamakura Gongor˘ Kagemasa in the spectacular drama "Shibaraku"; the role of the villain Kiyohara no Takehira is played by Kawarazaki Gonjűr˘ III; this drama is staged to celebrate the shűmei in Nagoya of Ichikawa Ebiz˘ X.

February 1971: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Musashib˘ Benkei in the drama "Benkei J˘shi"; the role of Owasa and Shinobu are played by Nakamura Senjaku II and Ichikawa Monnosuke VII.

April 1971: revival at the National Theatre of Nagawa Shimesuke I's drama "Sumidagawa Gonichi no Omokage"; Uzaemon plays the role of Asayama Shuzen [casting].

December 1972: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Hayano Kanpei in the michiyuki "Michiyuki Tabiji no Hanamuko"; the role of Shizuka Gozen is played by ďkawa Hashiz˘ II.

February 1973: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of ďboshi Yuranosuke (4th, 7th and 9th acts) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

May 1973: Uzaemon plays at the ďsaka Kabukiza the role of ďboshi Yuranosuke in the drama "Yamashina Kankyo".

June 1973: revival at the National Theatre of Tsuruya Nanboku IV and Sakurada Jisuke II drama "Kokoro no Nazo Toketa Iroito"; Uzaemon plays the roles of Kaze-no-Kami Kizaemon and Anoya Jűbŕ [casting].

December 1973: Uzaemon plays at the National Theatre the roles of K˘ no Moron˘ (1st and 3rd acts) and Ishid˘ Umanoj˘ (4th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

March 1975: revival at the National Theatre of Kawatake Shinshichi II's drama "Jiraiya G˘ketsu Monogatari"; Uzaemon plays the roles of Yashagor˘ and Tsukikage Gunry˘ Miyukinosuke [casting].

January 1976: Uzaemon plays at the National Theatre the role of Togashi Saemon in the dance-drama "Kanjinch˘"; the roles of Musashib˘ Benkei and Minamoto no Yoshitsune are played by Onoe Sh˘roku II and Onoe Baik˘ VII.

November 1977: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the roles of Momonoi Wakasanosuke (1st and 3rd acts), Ishid˘ Umanoj˘ (4th act) and Fuwa Kazuemon (6th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

May 1978: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the bombastic role of Kamakura Gongor˘ Kagemasa in the spectacular drama "Shibaraku"; the role of the villain Kiyohara no Takehira is played by Nakamura Tomijűr˘ V.

January 1979: tour in the Popular Republic of China.

January 1983: revival of "Nanatsu Men" at the National Theatre; Uzaemon plays the role of Ema no Koshir˘ Yoshitoki [casting].

January 1982: revival at the National Theatre of "Z˘hiki", a bombastic play in the aragoto style which belongs to the Kabuki Jűhachiban; Uzaemon plays the role of the villain ďtomo no Kachimaro [casting].

January 1984: historic revival at the National Theatre of the play "Sankai Nagoya"; Uzaemon plays the role of Umezu Kanimori [casting].

November 1984: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of ďboshi Yuranosuke in the drama "Yamashina Kankyo".

January 1985: revival at the National Theatre of the drama "Kan U", which belongs to the Kabuki Jűhachiban; Uzaemon plays the role of Kumagai Rensh˘b˘, later Ryű Bi [casting].

October 1986: Uzaemon plays at the National Theatre the roles of Kakogawa Honz˘ (2nd and 3rd acts) and Ishid˘ Umanoj˘ (4th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

November 1986: Uzaemon plays at the National Theatre the roles of Hara Goemon (6th act) and Teraoka Heiemon (7th act) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

December 1986: Uzaemon plays at the National Theatre the role of ďboshi Yuranosuke (9th, 10th and 11th acts) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

June 1987: tour in USSR.

September 1988: tour in South Korea.

1990: Uzaemon receives the prestigious title of Living National Treasure (Ningen Kokuh˘ in Japanese).

January 1991: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of the warrior-priest Musashib˘ Benkei in the dance-drama "Kanjinch˘"; the roles of Togashi Saemon and Minamoto no Yoshitsune are played by Nakamura Kichiemon II and Onoe Baik˘ VII.

February 1991: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the roles of K˘ no Moron˘ (1st and 3rd acts) and ďboshi Yuranosuke (7th and 11th acts) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

October 1992: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Musashib˘ Benkei in the drama "Benkei J˘shi"; the role of Owasa and Shinobu are played by Nakamura Jakuemon IV and Ichimura Manjir˘ II.

April 1993: Uzaemon plays at the Meijiza the bombastic role of Kamakura Gongor˘ Kagemasa in the spectacular drama "Shibaraku"; the role of the villain Kiyohara no Takehira is played by Uzaemon's son Band˘ Hikosabur˘ VIII; this drama is staged to celebrate the reopening of the Meijiza.

May 1994: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Musashib˘ Benkei in the drama "Benkei J˘shi"; the role of Owasa and Owasa's daughter Shinobu are played by Nakamura Shikan VII and Nakamura Fukusuke IX.
It is interesting to note that the role of the daughter is played by the son of the actor playing the role of the mother.

February 1995: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of K˘ no Moron˘ (1st and 3rd acts) in the classic "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

February 1997: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Kakogawa Honz˘ in the drama "Yamashina Kankyo".

November 1997: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Yoshitsune in the drama "T˘yata Monogatari", which is staged to commemorate the 36th anniversary (37th memorial service) and the 22nd anniversary (23rd memorial service) of the deaths of late Band˘ Mitsugor˘ VII and Band˘ Mitsugor˘ VIII; the roles of Iso no T˘yata and Shizuka Gozen are played by Band˘ Mitsugor˘ IX and Sawamura S˘jűr˘ IX.

April 1998: Uzaemon plays at the Sh˘chikuza the role of the villain Kiyohara no Takehira in the spectacular drama "Shibaraku"; the role of Kamakura Gongor˘ Kagemasa is played by Ichikawa Danjűr˘ XII; this drama is staged to celebrate the shűmei in ďsaka of Kataoka Nizaemon XV.

September 1999: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the role of Musashib˘ Benkei in the drama "Benkei J˘shi"; the role of Owasa and Owasa's daughter Shinobu are played by Nakamura Shikan VII and Nakamura Kankur˘ VI.
It is interesting to note that the role of the daughter is played by a grandson of the actor playing the role of the mother.

January 2000: Uzaemon plays at the Kabukiza the bombastic role of Soga Gor˘ Tokimune in the spectacular drama "Ya-no-Ne"; the role of Soga Jűr˘ Sukenari is played by Sawamura S˘jűr˘ IX. Uzaemon falls ill and has to be replaced from the 7th by his son Band˘ Hikosabur˘ VIII.

March 2001: Uzaemon performs on stage for the last time, with the Onoe Kikugor˘ Gekidan at the Shinbashi Enbuj˘, where he plays the role of Ishid˘ Umanoj˘ in the drama "Kanadehon Chűshingura", which is staged to commemorate the 12th anniversary (13th memorial service) and the 6th anniversary (7th memorial service) of the deaths of late Onoe Sh˘roku II and Onoe Baik˘ VII.

April 2001: Uzaemon appears on stage for the last time, in ďsaka at the Sh˘chikuza, where he takes part in the k˘j˘ celebrating the shűmei of Band˘ Mitsugor˘ X.

8 July 2001: Uzaemon dies in T˘ky˘ of breathing difficulties following a lung cancer.

Comments:

Ichimura Uzaemon XVII was one of the best tachiyaku of the second half of the twentieth century, excelling in aragoto roles. He was a Kabuki icon with encyclopedic knowledge of theater traditions. The theater critic It˘ Katsuyo wrote that he was "the last heavyweight in the Kabuki world. He learned directly from the old, legendary actors".

Ichimura Uzaemon XVII playing the role of Soga Gor˘ in the bombastic drama "Ya-no-Ne" (painting made by Hasegawa Noboru in June 1958)

The Band˘ Kamesabur˘ line of actors

The Band˘ Shinsui line of actors

The Band˘ Hikosabur˘ line of actors

The Ichimura Uzaemon line of actors and theater managers

 
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