|KATAOKA NIZAEMON I|
Line number: SHODAI (I)
Crest: the ideogram for two (2 horizontal bars) in a circle
Existence: 1656 ~ 1st day of the 11th lunar month of 1715
Master: Yamashita Ky˘emon I
Brother: Tomishima Harunoj˘
Brother-in-law: Fujikawa Shigeemon (Kataoka Nizaemon III)
Son: Kataoka Nizaemon II
1656 ~ 1694: born in Ky˘to. He starts his career as a shamisen player. He is scouted by the star Yamashita Hanzaemon (Yamashita Ky˘emon I), who welcomes him as a disciple and trains him as an actor.
1st lunar month of 1695: Nizaemon plays in the drama "Shuten D˘ji", which is produced in Ky˘to by Kokon Shinzaemon.
11th lunar month of 1698: Nizaemon becomes zamoto and produces with success the plays "Ishikawa Goemon", "Yadonashi Danshichi" and "Shuten D˘ji" in ďsaka at Shioya Kur˘emon's theater.
1st lunar month of 1699: Nizaemon coproduces several plays with Araki Yojibei I.
Spring 1700: Nizaemon becomes tachiyaku and triumphes in ďsaka in the play "Keisei Mugen no Kane", written by Ki-no-Kaion (Chikamatsu Monzaemon I's rival playwright) and produced by the zamoto Otowa Jirosabur˘ I.
Winter 1700~1701: Nizaemon becomes zamoto at Shioya Kur˘emon's theater.
1st lunar month of 1701: his rank in the ďsaka hy˘banki, tachiyaku section, is j˘-j˘ (superior - superior). He produces the play "Hyakunichi Soga" in which he plays the role of Soga Gor˘. His stage partner for the role of Sh˘sh˘, Gor˘'s courtesan lover, is the onnagata Sodesaki Karyű.
11th lunar month of 1701: Nizaemon organizes a great kaomise in ďsaka, producing the play "Yadonashi Danshichi Shichinenki" in which he plays the eponymous role of Danshichi, in the company of the actors Takioka Hikoemon (Issun Tokubei) and Osagawa Jűemon (Tsuribune Sabu).
1st lunar month of 1702: his rank in the ďsaka hy˘banki, jitsuaku section, is j˘-j˘-kichi (superior - superior - excellent). Nizaemon produces in Shioya Kur˘emon's theater the drama "Heishin'˘ Masakado" in which he plays the role of Masakado. His stage partner in the role of Ishi˘maru is Sawamura Ch˘jűr˘ I.
1st lunar month of 1704 ~ 1708: Nizaemon is playing a very active zamoto in ďsaka.
8th lunar month of 1706: short stay in Ky˘to; Nizaemon plays with Segawa Takenoj˘ in the plays "Ishikawa Goemon" and "ďtomo no Matori".
11th lunar month of 1706: Nizaemon produces in ďsaka the kaomise drama "Ebisu Otoko Onna Daigoku Hashira Gatame"; his stage partners are Shibazaki Rinzaemon I, Arashi Sanjűr˘ I, Asao Jűjir˘, Yoshizawa Ayame I and Araki Yojibei II.
1st lunar month of 1709: Nizaemon returns to Ky˘to and play in the drama "Yomeiri ďkeizu", which is performed at Ebisuya Kichir˘bei's theater.
7th lunar month of 1715: Nizaemon plays in Sakakiyama Kansuke's dramas "Aigo no Waka ďmi Hakkei" and "Jűsan Gane", which are produced by Sakakiyama Shirotar˘ I.
Fall 1715: Nizaemon appears on stage for the last time, at Kameya Kumenoj˘'s theater, playing the role of Iwagi no Hangan in the play "Sansh˘ Dayű".
11th lunar month of 1715: Nizaemon is about to play in "Manp˘ Chitose no Matsu" but he falls ill and dies suddenly. He is replaced and a moving oration dedicated to his memory is made on stage by the actor Shinozuka Jirozaemon.
Kataoka Nizaemon was a prominent Kamigata tachiyaku, who won fame for himself during the Genroku era. He was extremely appreciated by the ďsaka and Ky˘to audiences in the roles of katakiyaku and jitsugotoshi. He was the first actor to play and popularize the role of Danshichi Kurobei, now one of the most famous male roles in the Kabuki repertoire.
Kataoka Nizaemon I
The Kataoka Nizaemon line of actors
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