Stage names:

Ogino Sawanoj˘
Ogino Samanoj˘ I

Other name: Hagino Samanoj˘

Real name: Inoue Hanzaemon

Nicknames: Sashichi, T˘jűr˘

Poetry name: Shűk˘

Existence: 1656 ~ 1st day of the 8th lunar month of 1704


Master: Ogino Ch˘dayű I

Disciple: Ogino Samanoj˘ II


1656~1690: born in Ky˘to. He starts his career in Ky˘to as a disciple of the actor Ogino Ch˘dayű I, playing under the name of Ogino Sawanoj˘.

1st lunar month of 1691: Samanoj˘ plays the role of Masaki Rokurozaemon's spouse in the drama "Yome Kagami", which is produced in Ky˘to by Yamashita Hanzaemon I at Miyako Mandayű's theater.

1692: Samanoj˘ settles in Edo. He has to change his first name, because it is very close to the first name of a Shogunate high-ranking dignitary. Ogino Samanoj˘ takes the name of Ogino Sawanoj˘.

1694: Sawanoj˘ plays at the Ichimuraza.

11th lunar month of 1695: Sawanoj˘ plays at the Ichimuraza in the kaomise drama "Kaomise Jűnidan". His stage partner is Ichikawa Danjűr˘ I. This is the beginning of a great duo, the first goruden konbi in Kabuki history.

4th lunar month of 1696: Ichikawa Danjűr˘ I and Sawanoj˘ achieve a great success in the same theater by playing the roles of the wicked priest Narukami and Princess Taema in the drama "Narukami Sh˘nin Sanses˘ Taema no Chűj˘ Hime" ("Narukami").

11th lunar month of 1696: Sawanoj˘ achieves a great success at the Nakamuraza playing the leading role of Onna Narukami ("the female Narukami") in the drama "Neko no Koneko".

1st lunar month of 1697: premiere of the bombastic "Shibaraku" scene (Kabuki Jűhachiban), at the Nakamuraza, performed within the drama "Daifukuch˘ Sankai Nagoya"; Sawanoj˘ plays the role of the courtesan Katsuragi.

3rd lunar month of 1697: Sawanoj˘ and Ichikawa Danjűr˘ I play in the same theater the roles of Tamakura and Yagor˘ in the drama "Kant˘ Koroku".

5th lunar month of 1697: Sawanoj˘ and Ichikawa Danjűr˘ I play in the same theater the roles of Ninomiya and Deity Fud˘ in the drama "Tsuwamono Kongen Soga".

6th lunar month of 1698: Sawanoj˘ and Ichikawa Danjűr˘ I play in the same theater the roles of Asaka and Kamata Hy˘e in the drama "Ryűjo Sanjűnis˘". The role of the villain Taira no Kiyomori is played by Yamanaka Heikur˘ I.

9th lunar month of 1698: Sawanoj˘ and Ichikawa Danjűr˘ I play in the same theater the roles of Princess Taema and the wicked priest Narukami in the drama "Genpei Narukami Denki" (also called "Kumo no Taema Nagori no Tsuki"). This is Sawanoj˘'s last performance, who (temporarily) retires and opens an incent and perfume shop in Edo in the district of Iida-ch˘. As a merchant, he takes the name of K˘guya T˘jűr˘ ("T˘jűr˘ the perfumer"). His best-selling perfume is called Ogino Shűk˘. He also starts a new successful fashion with a woman hat called Sawanoj˘ B˘shi.

11th lunar month of 1699: Sawanoj˘ is back on stage, at the Moritaza, where he plays the role of Okuni, the legendary woman who created Kabuki, in Mimasuya Hy˘g˘'s drama "T˘sei Okuni Kabuki".

5th lunar month of 1700: Sawanoj˘ plays at the Moritaza the role of Tora Gozen in the drama "Dainihon Tekkai Sennin".

1st lunar month of 1701: Sawanoj˘ goes back to Kamigata; he takes back the name of Ogino Samanoj˘ and plays with Yoshizawa Ayame I and Mizuki Tatsunosuke I in the drama "Miyako no Waka Ebisu", which is staged in Ky˘to at Ebisuya Kichir˘bŕ's theater.

11th lunar month of 1701: Samanoj˘ goes to ďsaka, takes back the name of Ogino Sawanoj˘ and plays in the kaomise program produced by Matsumoto Nazaemon III.

1703: last stay in Edo.

1st lunar month of 1704: Sawanoj˘ appears on stage for the last time, at the Moritaza, playing in the hatsu ky˘gen drama "Arajishi Otokonosuke". He suddenly falls ill and dies the 1st day of the 8th lunar month of 1704.


Ogino Sawanoj˘ was an outstanding Genroku onnagata, who made a fame for himself in both Edo and Kamigata. He was one of the first actors in Kabuki history to breathe realism into his acting.

"The senior among the Genroku onnagata was Ogino Sawanoj˘, who died in 1704. He played heroines to Danjűr˘'s heroes, and was long associated with the first Ichikawa. He wore an obi of unusual width, and it became the fashion among the ladies of the capital. Tiring of the stage, he gave it up and opened an incense shop, but the attraction of the theatre was too great, and he returned. Always closely associated with Danjűr˘, he died the same year in which the founder of Japan's most famous line of actors was murdered in his dressing-room. "Amayo Sanbai Kigen", or Three Cups of Sake on a Rainy Night, a book of criticism, praises Ogino highly: "Even the gods and Buddha would be struck with the actions of this man. He is most realistic in pathetic scenes. As a lady of high rank, or a wife of the lower classes, he leaves nothing to be desired." (ZoŰ Kincaid in "Kabuki, the Popular Stage of Japan")

Ogino Sawanoj˘ in a print made by Torii Kiyonobu I

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