Stage names:

Nakajima Kanzaemon III In Japanese
Nakajima Kanroku III In Japanese
Nakajima Dennosuke In Japanese

Guild: Nakajimaya

Line number: SANDAIME (III)

Poetry names: Zesh˘, T˘shi

Existence: 1738 ~ 13th day of the 1st lunar month of 1794 [1]


Great-grandfather: Abura Kanroku

Grandfather: Nakajima Kanzaemon I

Father: Nakajima Kanzaemon II

Son: Nakajima Kanroku IV (?) [3]

Disciples: Nakajima Kanzaemon IV, Nakajima Kanroku IV (?) [3]


1738: born in Edo. His first stage name was Nakajima Dennosuke.

11th lunar month of 1753: he received the name of Nakajima Kanroku III at the Ichimuraza, where he performed as a katakiyaku with his father in the kaomise drama "Kamuri Kurabe Yatsushi Kuronushi".

5th day of the 8th lunar month of 1762 [2]: his father Nakajima Kanzaemon II died.

11th lunar month of 1762: he took the name of Nakajima Kanzaemon III at the Nakamuraza, where he played the role of Ecchű no Jirobŕ in the kaomise drama "Nagi no Ha Izu no Sugatami", which also celebrated the shűmei of ďtani Hiroemon III and Ichikawa Somegor˘ I.

11th lunar month of 1768: Kanzaemon performed at the Moritaza in the kaomise drama "Mutsuchidori Meika no Yumitori".

2nd lunar month of 1769: the play "Sekitori Senry˘ Nobori", which was originally written for the puppet theater and staged for the first time in the 8th lunar month of 1767 in ďsaka at the Takemotoza, was adapted for Kabuki for the first time, in Edo at the Moritaza; Kanzaemon played the role of a sum˘ referee [casting].

4th lunar month of 1780: first Kabuki adaptation of Utei Enba, Kij˘ Tar˘ and Y˘ Y˘dai puppet theater drama "Go Taiheiki Shiraishi Banashi". The play was staged in Edo at the Moritaza; Kanzaemon played the roles of Igaya Daishichi and Kumiya Yazaemon [casting].

1st lunar month of 1792: Kanzaemon was the kanjiku for katakiyaku actors in the Edo hy˘banki.

1st lunar month of 1793: Kanzaemon's rank in the Edo hy˘banki, katakiyaku section, was j˘-j˘-(shiro)kichi (superior - superior - (white) excellent) [visual].

5th lunar month of 1793: Kanzaemon played at the Ichimuraza the role of K˘ no Moron˘ in the drama "Kanadehon Chűshingura".

Fall 1793: Kanzaemon played in the same theater the role of H˘j˘ Tokimasa in the drama "ďmi Genji Senjin Yakata".

11th lunar month of 1793: Kanzaemon appeared on stage for the last time, in Edo at the Kawarasakiza, where he played the role of Higekuro no ďji, the evil prince of the "Shibaraku" scene, in the drama "Nigiwai Genji Hana Saku Mon".

13th day of the 1st lunar month of 1794 [1]: Kanzaemon died in Edo.


Nakajima Kanzaemon III was a katakiyaku actor, who made all his career in Edo during the second half of the 18th century. He was said to look like the actor ďtani Ryűzaemon II. He was also able to play old women roles in his latter years.

[1] The 13th day of the 1st lunar month of the 6th year of the Kansei era was the 12th of February 1794 in the western calendar.

[2] The 5th day of the 8th lunar month of the 12th year of the H˘reki era was the 22nd of September 1762 in the western calendar.

[3] A katakiyaku named Nakajima Kanroku was recorded in Edo hy˘banki between 1795 and 1799. He could have been either the son or a disciple of Nakajima Kanzaemon III. No proof so far.

The Actor Nakajima Kanzaemon III, from "A Picture Book of Stage Fans (Ehon Butai ďgi)"
Artist: Katsukawa Shunsh˘
Date: 1770
The Art Institute of Chicago (print in the public domain)

Prints & Illustrations

The Nakajima Kanzaemon line of actors

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