KAWARASAKI KUNITARď
   
SIX GENERATIONS
Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ I
 

Born in Edo in 1849. Son of Kawarasaki Gonnosuke VI, he started his career as a wakashugata in the 2nd lunar month of 1859, at the Ichimuraza where he received the name of Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ I. He became wakaonnagata in the 11th lunar month of 1863, playing the role of Okumi in the drama "Kanadehon Chűshingura". He made his last stage apperance in the 2nd lunar month of 1867, at the Ichimuraza, playing the roles of the courtesan Kewaizaka no Sh˘sh˘ and Ohaya in the drama "Keisei Soga Kuruwa Kagami". He died in Edo the 21st of 4th lunar month of 1867.

Haimy˘ Yag˘
Senshi Yamashiroya

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ I playing the role of Kofuyu in the drama "Konoshita Kage Hazama Kassen",
which was staged in the 9th lunar month of 1863 at the Nakamuraza
(print made by Utagawa Kunisada II)

Print made by Utagawa Toyokuni in 1864

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ II
 

Dates of birth and death unknown. He was most likely the son of Ichikawa T˘sh˘. He was adopted by the actor Onoe Kikujir˘ II. His first stage name was Onoe Tash˘. He took the names of Onoe Karyű (Karyű was the haimy˘ of his adoptive father) and Onoe Eizabur˘ (he was never acknowledged as an official member of this line) in the 1st lunar month of 1848 and 8th lunar month of 1863. He joined the Kawarasaki clan at the beginning of the Meiji era, taking the name of Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ II in the 3rd lunar month of 1869 at the Ichimuraza, where he successfully played the role of Yoshitsune in the dance-drama "Kanjinch˘"*. He became tateonnagata at the Kawarasakiza in July 1874 but his relationship with his adoptive family quickly deteriorated and he left the Kawarasaki clan in Fall 1875. He temporarily called himself Kawarasaki Kunisabur˘ during the crisis and finally took the name of Kisegawa Rok˘ in November 1875. He was active up to 1878.

(*) Kunitar˘'s stage partners were Kawarasaki Gonnosuke VII (Musashib˘ Benkei) and ďtani Tomoemon V (Togashi).

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ II portraying Konami in the drama "Kanadehon Chűshingura"
(print made by Toyohara Kunichika in 1870)

Print made by Utagawa Toyokuni in 1863

Print made by Utagawa Toyokuni in 1863

Print made by Toyohara Kunichika in 1871

Print made by Toyohara Kunichika in 1873

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ III
 

Born in 1853. Son of Arashi Kanroku (later Onoe Kanez˘), he started his career in Edo and Yokohama as a disciple of Ichikawa Ichiz˘ III, who gave him the name of Ichikawa Ichimaru. He took the name of Nakayama Ittoku IV at an unknown time (most likely at the beginning of the Meiji era), performing as a wakaonnagata in T˘ky˘ venues like the Harukiza or the Nakahashiza. He was finally adopted by the Kawarasaki clan in 1875 and was allowed to take the name of Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ III in September 1878 at the Ichimuraza, playing the role of Osada and Okiku in the drama "Nikaigasa Enoshima M˘de". This onnagata, who excelled in sewa ny˘b˘ roles, was active at the Shintomiza or the Ichimuraza up to June 1887, when he made his last stage appearance in the latter theater, playing the roles of Masaoka and Otoku in the drama "Date Kurabe Okuni Kabuki". He died in T˘ky˘ the 21st of July 1887.

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ III (left) and Nakamura Kofuku (right) playing the roles of Misao and her daughter Matsugae in the drama "Hana Kurabe Azuma Nishikie",
which was staged in July 1886 at the Ichimuraza
(print made by Toyohara Kunichika)

Print made by Toyohara Kunichika in 1882

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ IV
 

The actor Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ IV held this name from June 1912 to August 1919.

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ IV

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ V
 

The actor Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ V held this name from April 1932 to October 1990.

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ V

Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ VI
 

The actor Kawarasaki Kunitar˘ VI is the current holder of the name since May 1998.

 
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