Play title Jűni Hitoe Komachi Zakura  In Japanese
Ky˘ran Kumoi no Sode  In Japanese
Common title Nakaz˘ Ky˘ran  In Japanese
Authors Segawa Jok˘ I (lyrics)
Kineya Sh˘jir˘ I (music)
Nishikawa Senz˘ II (choreography)

The Nagauta-based dance-drama "Ky˘ran Kumoi no Sode" was premiered in the 11th lunar month of 1784 at the Kiriza, as part of the kaomise drama "Jűni Hitoe Komachi Zakura". It starred Nakamura Nakaz˘ I in the leading role of Ono no Yoshizane. It became an important dance-drama for the Shigayama School of Buy˘.

This dance-drama is rarely-staged nowadays but it is still part of the Kabuki repertoire. During the second half of the 20th century, it was staged in ˘shibai only twice:

Date Theater Yoshizane
1960/05 Kabukiza Onoe Baik˘ VII
1957/04 Nakaza Jitsukawa Enjir˘ II
Key words Dewa
Dewa Gunji
Heian Jidai
Kaomise Buy˘
Ono Komachi
Ono Yoshizane
ďtomo Kuronushi
S˘j˘ Henj˘
Yoshimine Munesada

This dance is a ky˘ranmono. It depicts a character who is in a state of mental confusion due to the stress of over-anxiety or through some great tragedy (the sudden death of a lover for example). The kaomise drama "Jűni Hitoe Komachi Zakura ", in which "Nakaz˘ Ky˘ran" was staged, told the story of the beautiful court poetess Ono no Komachi [1], who was plagued by an unwelcome wedding proposed from the kugeaku Prince Yagumo.

Ono no Komachi, however, was betrothed to a young nobleman named Yoshimine Munesada [1], and spurning Prince Yagumo, she slipped away from the capital to seek her lover who in the meantime has left the court because of various intrigues engineered by the evil ďtomo no Kuronushi [1]. Komachi's father, the kugy˘ Ono no Yoshizane (also called Dewa Gunji [2]) was thereupon besieged daily by messengers (j˘shi) from Prince Yagumo demanding that he reveals the whereabouts of his daughter. Yoshizane was so harassed by the obnoxious messengers that he finally pretended to go mad in order to evade their demands.


[1] One of the rokkasen.

[2] Ono no Yoshizane held the title of gunji in the province of Dewa.

Illustration from the Nagauta music booklet of "Ky˘ran Kumoi no Sode" (1784)

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