Play title Ry˘kan to Komori  In Japanese
Authors Tsubouchi Sh˘y˘ (lyrics)
Tokiwazu Mojibŕ III, Tokiwazu Matsuodayű III (music)
Fujima Kanjűr˘ VII (choreography)

The dance "Ry˘kan to Komori" was premiered in June 1929 in T˘ky˘ at the Imperial Theater. The role of Ry˘kan was played by Morita Kan'ya XIII [more details].

Key words Echigo

On the outskirts of a rural village in the province of Echigo, near the statue of a jiz˘, little children of the village are at play beside the roadside under the blossoming cherry trees (sakura). One of the little girls, a komori, has a child on her back, and she sings to it to keep it quiet. Ry˘kan, the priest of a small local temple, comes to the site in a good mood, having been treated to food and sake somewhere in the vicinity. As he is a great favorite of the children, they greet him happily. They notice that he doesn't have with him the iron pot that he always carries with him. Ry˘kan seems to have forgotten it somewhere in his good mood and regrets its loss, at which the children feel sorry for him.

The children invite him to play ball with them (maritsuki). He drops the ball (mari) and is made to tell a story. When he drops the ball the second time, he is asked to perform a dance. Finally, he is blindfolded for a game of tag, but the children run away, leaving him alone. Not knowing that he has been abandoned, Ry˘kan continues to feel around for a child, but catches the farmer Jinroku on his way home from the fields instead. The farmer happens to have with him the iron pot that Ry˘kan treasures. He explains how he found it, and Ry˘kan is so happy to retrieve it that he falls on his knees before the farmer in gratitude.

The actors Morita Kan'ya XIII and Onoe Kikue playing the roles of Ry˘kan and the komori in the dance-drama "Ry˘kan to Komori", which was staged in June 1931 at the T˘ky˘ Gekij˘

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