Stage names:

Kawarasaki Kunitarô IV In Japanese
Jitsukawa Entarô II In Japanese
Jitsukawa Enshi In Japanese

Real name: Inoue Tadashi

Guilds: Yamazakiya [1], Izutsuya [2]

Line number: YODAIME (IV)

Poetry name: Jisshô, Senshi

Existence: 11 February 1888 ~ 13 August 1919


Master: Jitsukawa Enzaburô IV


11 February 1888: born in Kumamoto Prefecture.

1888 ~ 1900: he started his career in Kamigata at an early age as a disciple of Jitsukawa Enzaburô IV, who gave him the name of Jitsukawa Enshi.

1900: he settled in Tôkyô at the age of 12.

31 January 1905: his master Jitsukawa Enzaburô IV died in Kyôto.

May 1907: he took the name of Jitsukawa Entarô II at the Tôkyôza.

June 1912: he took the name of Kawarasaki Kunitarô IV at the Kabukiza.

August 1919: Kunitarô appeared on stage for the last time, at the Imperial Theater, playing the roles of Oyone's ghost and Okuni in the summer ghost play "Kaidan Botan Dôrô". He suddenly dies the 13th of August 1919, victim of a heart attack. People in the Kabuki world believed that he was, along with Onoe Kikujirô III, his stage partner in the play in the role of Otsuyu's ghost who died the 27th of August 1919, victim of a curse casted by real ghosts: "there is a superstition concerning The Peony Lantern to the effect that actors who play the ghosts' rôles soon pass away. This was brought home when the play was presented at the Imperial Theatre in August 1919. During the performances two of the most promising young actors of Tôkyô, taking the rôles of mistress and maid, took ill and died within a week of each other. Nightly they had been seen, pale-faced, the hair worn long and dishevelled, the maid with the ghostly lantern in hand, moving behind the willow tree. Soon they were to become like the shades they impersonated, no longer of the earth, earthy" (Zoë Kincaid in "Kabuki, the Popular Stage of Japan").

13 August 1919: Kunitarô died in Tôkyô.


Kawarasaki Kunitarô IV was a promising wakaonnagata actor, who excelled in daughter and princess roles but unfortunately died (a mysterious way) too young. He spent a few years in a Shinpa troupe in the forties of the Meiji era and was also involved in the early modern stage projects of Ichikawa Ennosuke II.

[1] Kawarasaki years.

[2] Jitsukawa years.

Kawarasaki Kunitarô IV

The Jitsukawa Entarô line of actors

The Kawarasaki Kunitarô line of actors

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