Dance title Onizoroi Momijigari  In Japanese
Author Hagiwara Yukio (lyrics)
Nozawa Matsunosuke, Tokiwazu Kikusaburô, Tanaka Denzaemon XI (music)

Hagiwara Yukio's dance-drama "Onizoroi Momijigari" was premiered in April 1960 at the Kabukiza [casting]. This dance was based on Kawatake Mokuami's masterpiece "Momijigari", which was itself based on the eponymous drama. In this version, all the ladies-in-waiting serving the demon of Mt. Togakushi, disguised as Princess Sarashina, later appear in the form of female demons

Key words Shosagoto

Taira no Koremochi and his retainers are hunting deer deep in the Mt. Togakushi when he comes upon a beautiful princess viewing the autumn leaves. The princess, who is named Sarashina, and her ladies-in-waiting (jijo) invite Koremochi to join her hanami party. He becomes drunk when she pours sake for him. When the ladies-in-waiting and Princess Sarashina perform a beautiful dance for their guests, Koremochi falls asleep and the women swiftly depart from the scene, revealing some sign of their true identity as demons.

As he sleeps, Koremochi is warned in a dream by two* messengers from the God of the Otokoyama Hachiman shrine that the woman is actually a demon, and they gives him a holy sword with which to protect himself. When Koremochi awakes, the demon of Mt. Togakushi and her serving demons (kijo) reappear and attack Koremochi and his retainers, but he defends himself with the divine sword and at last defeats the demons.

This summary would have not been possible without the help of Sekidobashi Sakura!

(*) in recent productions, notably "Onizoroi Momijigari" revised by Imai Toyoshige, they were 4 messengers instead of 2.

Onizoroi Momijigari

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