JUNE 2018

3 shows in T˘ky˘ (Kabukiza, National Theatre), 1 in Matsumoto (Matsumoto Performing Arts Centre) and 2 in Fukuoka (Hakataza)!

  • Living National Treasure Onoe Kikugor˘, Living National Treasure Nakamura Kichiemon, Living National Treasure Nakamura T˘z˘, Nakamura Jakuemon, Nakamura Tokiz˘, Nakamura Shikan, Onoe Kikunosuke, Nakamura Kinnosuke, Onoe Sh˘roku, Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Danz˘ and Band˘ Rakuzen perform at the Kabukiza!
  • Matsumoto Haku˘, Matsumoto K˘shir˘, Living National Treasure Sakata T˘jűr˘, Living National Treasure Kataoka Nizaemon, Nakamura Baigyoku, Nakamura Kaishun, Nakamura Ganjir˘, Kataoka Takatar˘, Band˘ Yajűr˘ and ďtani Tomoemon perform at the Hakataza!
  • Nakamura Matagor˘ and his son Nakamura Kash˘ perform at the National Theatre!
  • Nakamura Shichinosuke, Nakamura Senjaku and Kataoka Kamez˘ perform at the Matsumoto Performing Arts Centre!
  • Kabukiza (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 2 ~ 26 June 2018
    Rokugatsu ďkabuki
    June Grand Kabuki

    Imoseyama Onna Teikin
    (Mikasayama Goten)

    Rokkasen Sugata no Irodori (Bun'ya)

    Nozarashi Gosuke


    Natsu Matsuri Naniwa Kagami

  • Sumiyoshi Torii Mae
  • Tsuribune Sabu Uchi
  • Nagamachi Ura
  • K˘dan Yomiya no Ame


    Living National Treasure Onoe Kikugor˘, Living National Treasure Nakamura Kichiemon, Living National Treasure Nakamura T˘z˘, Nakamura Jakuemon, Nakamura Tokiz˘, Nakamura Shikan, Onoe Kikunosuke, Nakamura Kinnosuke, Onoe Sh˘roku, Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Danz˘, Band˘ Rakuzen, Band˘ Hikosabur˘, Band˘ Kamez˘, Ichimura Kakitsu, Kawarasaki Gonjűr˘, Onoe Matsuya, Nakamura Matsue, ďtani Keiz˘, Nakamura Kotar˘, Nakamura Yonekichi, Band˘ Shingo, Nakamura Tanenosuke, Arashi Kitsusabur˘, Nakamura Kichinoj˘, Nakamura Baika, Ichimura Kitsutar˘, Terashima Kazufumi


    The traditional programs for the June Grand Kabuki at the Kabukiza.

  • Mikasayama Goten: a fantastic Kabuki period play showing intrigues in the imperial court in the earliest days of Japan. The dictator Soga no Iruka has set up his own court and now seeks to destroy his opponent Kamatari. A mysterious fisherman named Fukashichi (Onoe Sh˘roku) comes as a messenger from Kamatari, claiming to bring a message of surrender. Meanwhile, Iruka's younger sister, Princess Tachibana (Band˘ Shingo) has fallen in love with a handsome young man named Motome (Onoe Matsuya). But Motome is actually the son of Kamatari and says that he will only grant her love if she will cut off Iruka's head. Moreover, a country girl named Omiwa (Nakamura Tokiz˘) has also followed Motome. Omiwa's blood and the work of all these people combined are what is necessary to finally defeat the magical powers of the evil Iruka (Band˘ Rakuzen).
  • Nozarashi Gosuke: this is a sewamono play, a work portraying in a realistic way the lives of ordinary people in the Edo period (1603-1868). Gosuke (Living National Treasure Onoe Kikugor˘) is a chivalrous commoner in ďsaka and a pupil of a famous priest. Being a very handsome and suave man, he finds himself proposed to by two women. But he is perplexed because he is undergoing ascetic practices. Nor is this all, having inadvertently insulted a local gang boss, he is challenged by the gang. Since it is the anniversary of his mother's death, however, he refrains from fighting back due to his religious observances. Finally, he takes his own revenge on the gang boss later, in front of a large temple gate in a spectacular fight scene. Featuring Living National Treasure Nakamura T˘z˘, Onoe Kikunosuke, Ichikawa Sadanji, Ichikawa Danz˘ and Kawarasaki Gonjűr˘.
  • 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 Living National Treasure Nakamura Kichiemon as Danshichi, with Nakamura Kinnosuke, Nakamura Karoku and Nakamura Jakuemon as Issun Tokubŕ, Tsuribune Sabu and Otatsu. Featuring also Living National Treasure Nakamura T˘z˘, Onoe Kikunosuke and his son Terajima Kazufumi.
  • K˘dan Yomiya: this is a ghost story by Uno Nobuo first performed in 1935 and belonging to the category of so-called 'New Kabuki' plays (Shinkabuki). It portrays the greedy, lecherous priest Ryűtatsu (Nakamura Shikan) who must depend on his nephew, the playboy Tajű (Onoe Sh˘roku). Ryűtatsu had left his daughter Otora in Tajű's care, but Tajű's wife Oichi (Nakamura Jakuemon) was cruel to her and they sold her to a lowlife doctor to serve as his mistress. Tajű kills his uncle for the money he has hidden. But Ryűtatsu's ghost gets its revenge by haunting Oichi to death. Mysteriously, Otora is found dead in the same box into which Tajű had previously put Ryűtatsu and thrown into the river. Frightened at seeing the ghost, Tajű falls into a river and drowns.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    Hakataza (Fukuoka)
    Dates 2 ~ 26 June 2018
    Rokugatsu Hakataza ďkabuki
    June Hakataza Grand Kabuki

    Haji Momiji Ase no Kaomise (Date no Jűyaku)


    Heike Nyogo no Shima (Shunkan)


    Shin Sarayashiki Tsuki no Amagasa
    (Sakanaya S˘gor˘)

    Shunky˘ Kagami Jishi


    Matsumoto Haku˘, Matsumoto K˘shir˘, Living National Treasure Sakata T˘jűr˘, Living National Treasure Kataoka Nizaemon, Nakamura Baigyoku, Nakamura Kaishun, Nakamura Ganjir˘, Kataoka Takatar˘, Band˘ Yajűr˘, ďtani Tomoemon, Ichikawa Emisabur˘, Ichikawa Emiya, Nakamura Kazutar˘, Ichikawa Komaz˘, Kamimura Kichiya, Nakamura Kikaku, Ichikawa En'ya, Sawamura S˘nosuke, Matsumoto Kingo, ďtani Hirotar˘


    The traditional two programs for the June Grand Kabuki at the Hakataza. Matsumoto Haku˘ II and his son Matsumoto K˘shir˘ X celebrate their shűmei in Fukuoka at the Hakataza!

  • Date no Jűyaku: One of the most famous plays in Kabuki is "Meiboku Sendai Hagi", the story of the fabulously wealthy Date clan in Sendai and plots to take over the clan. In the early 19th century, this play was rewritten so that one actor could play all the roles, switching from one to another with fast changes. The script for this particular version was lost, but some twenty years ago, Ichikawa Ennosuke had a new version prepared and this has since become a classic of Ennosuke's style of Kabuki. Matsumoto K˘shir˘ plays ten roles, male and female, young and old, villain and hero. Featuring also Living National Treasure Kataoka Nizaemon, Nakamura Baigyoku, Nakamura Kaishun, Nakamura Ganjir˘, Kataoka Takatar˘, Nakamura Kazutar˘ and Matsumoto Haku˘.
  • Shunkan: the priest Shunkan (Living National Treasure Kataoka Nizaemon) has been exiled to Devil's Island for plotting against the dictator Kiyomori. A pardon is given to his fellow conspirators, but Shunkan is only saved by an additional pardon given by Kiyomori's compassionate son. Even so, he gives up his place on the boat to freedom so his companion's new wife can accompany her husband back to the capital. The boat leaves and Shunkan is left watching is disappear in the distance, knowing he will be left on the island forever. Featuring Band˘ Yajűr˘ as the evil emissary Senoo and Nakamura Baigyoku as the merciful envoy Tanzaemon. With Kataoka Takatar˘ as the island girl Chidori and Nakamura Ganjir˘ as Naritsune, Shunkan's fellow exile who has fallen in love with her.
  • K˘j˘: the close relationship between the actors and the audience is shown by these stage announcements, lavish ceremonies to commemorate various important events. In this case, all the stars of the cast assemble to celebrate the shűmei of Matsumoto Haku˘ II and Matsumoto K˘shir˘ X.
  • Sakanaya S˘gor˘: S˘gor˘ (Matsumoto Haku˘), a fish seller, has taken a vow to not drink, but when he learns about his sister's unjust murder at the hands of a daimy˘ lord, a death that they were told was execution for her wrongdoing, he starts to drink again. Drunk, he storms into the lord's mansion to seek an apology. This play by Meiji playwright Kawatake Mokuami is known for its realistic portrayal of members of the common class during the Edo period and highlights their fierce pride and frustration at the privileges of the dominant samurai class. Featuring also Band˘ Yajűr˘, Nakamura Kaishun and Nakamura Kazutar˘.
  • Kagami Jishi: one of the most important dances for onnagata female role specialists and is an audience favorite. The maidservant Yayoi performs an auspicious lion dance for the Sh˘gun in his opulent palace, but she gradually finds herself under the control of the lion spirit. In the second half of the dance, the lion spirit itself appears and performs its crazed dance among peonies and fluttering butterflies. Starring Matsumoto K˘shir˘ as both Yayoi and the spirit of the lion.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    National Theatre (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 2 ~ 24 June 2018
    Rokugatsu Kabuki Kansh˘ Ky˘shitsu
    June Kabuki Appreciation Class



    Nakamura Matagor˘, Nakamura Kash˘, Nakamura Hayato, Nakamura Fukunosuke


    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 of Kabuki or some aspects of the art like music, stage tricks or fighting scenes. It is followed by the dance-drama "Renjishi".

  • 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 Matagor˘ in the role of the parent shishi and his son Nakamura Kash˘ in the role of the cub.
  • Source: Earphone Guide website

    Matsumoto Performing Arts Centre (Matsumoto)
    Dates 12 ~ 18 June 2018 (Shinshű Matsumoto ďkabuki)
    Shinshű Matsumoto Grand Kabuki

    Kirare Yosa


    Nakamura Shichinosuke, Nakamura Senjaku, Kataoka Kamez˘, Nakamura Baishi, Nakamura Mantar˘, Sasano Takashi


    6th edition in the city of Matsumoto (first time in July 2008; second time in July 2010; third time in July 2012; fourth time in July 2014); fifth time in July 2016) of a Kabuki program, which is called Shinshű Matsumoto ďkabuki (Shinshű is an old name for the province of Nagano, whose main city is Matsumoto). Same program as the 16th edition of the Cocoon Kabuki in T˘ky˘:

  • Kirare Yosa: Since its beginning in 1994, Cocoon Kabuki has continuously evolved. Always seen from a brand-new viewpoint, it has breathed fresh air into kabuki classics creating sensational productions that have drawn audiences into its unique and exciting world. To mark its 16th production, Cocoon Kabuki will stage a much anticipated work. The popular classic "Yowa Nasake Ukina no Yokogushi" is given a completely fresh interpretation under the direction of Kushida Kazuyoshi, based on a script revised by Kinoshita Yűichi. It is a story of the handsome Yosabur˘ and the beautiful Otomi. Forced to part repeatedly, it seems that destiny always brings them back together again. Those around them are tossed about, drawn into this whirlpool of fate. Yosabur˘ will be performed by Nakamura Shichinosuke and Otomi by Nakamura Baishi. Also appearing will be Nakamura Senjaku in the role of Kannon Kyűji.
  • Source: Earphone Guide website

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