Stage names:

Nakamura Sen'ya I In Japanese
Kiriyama Masanosuke In Japanese | In Japanese

Line number: SHODAI (I)

Existence: ???


Father-in-law: Takeshima K˘zaemon I

Master: Nakamura Shichisabur˘ I

Disciple: Nakamura Genzaemon I (the adoptive father of Nakamura Utaemon I's master Nakamura Genjűr˘)


???~1691: born in Kamigata. He started his career during the Enky˘ era and performed in Ky˘to as a wakaonnagata. His first stage name was Kiriyama Masanosuke

1691: he settled in Edo.

1696: he decides to change the writing of his last name:

Previous writing New writing
霧山政之助 桐山政之助

You need a Japanese Language Kit installed within your system in order to be able to read the characters

1699: Masanosuke went back to Ky˘to.

11th lunar month of 1699: he became disciple of Nakamura Shichisabur˘ I and received the name of Nakamura Sen'ya I. He also got married around the same time with the daughter of Takeshima K˘zaemon I.

1st lunar month of 1701: Sen'ya went to ďsaka and played the role of Sano Utaemon's sister Harima no Osan in the drama "Kashű D˘my˘ji Kaich˘", which was produced by Iwai Hanshir˘ II; the role of Utaemon was played by Murayama Jűheiji I.

2nd lunar month of 1704: Sen'ya's rank in the ďsaka hy˘banki, wakaonnagata section, was j˘-j˘ (superior - superior) [visual].

1st lunar month of 1706: Sen'ya went to Ky˘to to perform at Hayagumo Ch˘dayű's theater.

11th lunar month of 1706: Sen'ya played at Hayagumo Ch˘dayű's theater the role of the spirit of a pine tree in the kaomise drama "Sukeroku Shinjű Kamiko Sugata"; his stage partners were Fukuda Dan'emon and Yamatoyama Jinzaemon I.

3rd lunar month of 1707: Sen'ya's rank in the Ky˘to hy˘banki, wakaonnagata section, was j˘-j˘-kichi (superior - superior - excellent) [visual].

Fall 1716: Sen'ya went to Edo.

11th lunar month of 1716: Sen'ya performed at the Nakamuraza in the kaomise drama "Mitsudomoe Katoku Biraki", which celebrated the shűmei of Arashi Kiyosabur˘ II.

1st lunar month of 1717: Sen'ya's rank in the Edo hy˘banki, wakaonnagata section, j˘-j˘-(hanshiro)kichi (superior - superior - almost excellent).

5th lunar month of 1717: Chikamatsu Monzaemon's masterpiece "Kokusen'ya Gassen" was produced simultaneously in the 3 Edo Kabuki theaters. This was the first Kabuki adaptation of a puppet theater play in Edo. It was produced at the Nakamuraza under the title "Kokusen'ya Takarabune"; Sen'ya played the role of Kinsh˘jo [casting].

11th lunar month of 1717: Sen'ya played at the Nakamuraza the role of the female uekiya Teishu in the kaomise drama "Hachinoki H˘nen Mitsugimono".

1718 ~ 1728: Sen'ya performed in a travelling troupe (tabi shibai).

2nd lunar month of 1728: Sen'ya appeared for the last time on the stage of a major licensed theater, playing the role of Onabe in the drama "Man'y˘ no Hana Nishiki no Akebono", which was produced by Kanazawa Hikogor˘ in Ky˘to. No record afterwards.


"Nakamura Sen'ya at first was an insignificant onnagata in Edo, but he went to ďsaka, where he scored a great success in a courtesan play and remained there many years, returning to Edo after an absence of eighteen years. The criticisms of the day complained that he had grown fat, but was still a true onnagata in spirit and gesture. When Nakamura Sen'ya returned from ďsaka, he started the custom for a Ky˘to or ďsaka actor performing in Edo to give gifts to minor actors and theatre employees. He presented a good many kimono dyed in a certain colour which became all the rage, and was called Sen'ya dye." (ZoŰ Kincaid in "Kabuki, the Popular Stage of Japan")

The actor Nakamura Sen'ya I in the drama "Mitsudomoe Katoku Biraki", which was staged in the 11th lunar month of 1716 at the Nakamuraza (print made by Torii Kiyomasu I)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art (print in the public domain)

The Nakamura Sen'ya line of actors

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