SUKETAKAYA TAKASUKE I

Stage names:

Suketakaya Takasuke I In Japanese
Sawamura Chjr III In Japanese
Sawamura Sjr In Japanese
Sawamura Chjr III In Japanese
Sawamura Sjr I In Japanese
Sawamura Sjr In Japanese
Sawamura Zengor In Japanese
Someyama Kijr I In Japanese

Other name: Sawamura Tosshi I

Guild: Kinokuniya

Line number: SHODAI (I)

Poetry names: Tosshi (1), Kga

Crest: the syllabic ideogram "i" in a circle [in Japanese: ]

Existence: 1685 ~ 3rd day of the 1st lunar month of 1756

Connections:

Master: Sawamura Chjr I

Son: Sawamura Kamesabur

Adopted son: Sawamura Sjr II

Disciples: Sawamura Chjr IV, Sawamura Otoemon II, Sawamura Sjr, Sawamura Genjir, Sawamura Kodenji II, Sawamura Ujr I, Sawamura Sgor I, Sawamura Chsaku, Sawamura Chshir I, Sawamura Somegor, Sawamura Unomatsu, Sawamura Nisji

Career:

1685 ~ 1715: born in Kyto. Third son of the samurai Miki Wakasa. His family is very close to the actor Sawamura Chjr I, who accepts to take him as a disciple. After a few years round about his master, he decides to leave Kyto, following the travelling actor Tamiya Shirogor. He gives up acting a few years later and learns to play flute in order to become a musician.

1715: he's back on stage and performs in Ise at the Furuichi no Shibai, playing under the name of Someyama Kijr I.

1716: Sawamura Chjr welcomes him back and gives him the name of Sawamura Zengor.

11th lunar month of 1716: Zengor plays with his master in saka in the drama "Kogane no Ichigura".

2nd lunar month of 1717: Sawamura Chjr produces in saka the plays "Keisei Chibiki no Ishi" and "Keisei Kokusen'ya" in which Zengor attracts considerable attention, especially in the second play in which he replaces the star Anegawa Shinshir I, who fell sick at the beginning of the performance, in the prestigious role of Watnai.

1718: he spends a few weeks in Ise and settles in Edo.

11th lunar month of 1718: Sawamura Zengor takes the name of Sawamura Sjr at the Moritaza, playing the role of Fujiwara no Takenori in the drama "Zenkunen Yoroi Kurabe". The ideogram "S" [in Japanese: ] chosen by the actor is the one used for the concept of totality.

1st lunar month of 1720: Sjr plays at the Moritaza the role of Soga Jr Sukenari in the bombastic "Ya-no-Ne" scene, included in the new year drama "Yuzuriha Kongen Soga". His stage partner in the role of Soga Gor Tokimune is Ichikawa Danjr II, whose incredible performance is a huge success.

1720: the actor decides to change his ideogram "S", using the one meaning the origin [in Japanese: ].

1st lunar month of 1721: Sjr plays the role of Soga Jr in the new year sogamono "Tsurukame Wakayagi Soga", which is staged at the Ichimuraza. His stage partners in the roles of Soga Gor, Kud Saemon Suketsune and the courtesan iso no Tora (Jr's lover) are Ichimura Takenoj IV, Yamanaka Takejr and Nakamura Takesabur I.

11th lunar month of 1721: Sjr takes part in the Ichimuraza kaomise program "Kichirei Imagawaj". He plays the role of Ashikaga Yorikane, sharing the stage with Matsumoto Kshir I, Ichikawa Danz I and Yamanaka Heikur I.

1st lunar month of 1722: Sjr plays in the same theater 6 roles, including Soga Jr, in the new year program "Yaoya Shinj".

11th lunar month of 1722: Sjr plays at the Ichimuraza the roles of Sanada Yoichi and Minamoto Yoritomo in the kaomise program "Hinazuru Katoku Soga".

1st lunar month of 1723: Sjr's rank in the Edo hybanki is j-j-kichi (superior - superior - excellent). He plays in the same theater the role of Soga Jr in the new year sogamono "Manazuru Kaz Soga". His stage partner in the role of the courtesan iso no Tora (Jr's lover) is Fujimura Handay II.

11th lunar month of 1723: Sjr plays at the Ichimuraza the role of Nakamitsu in the kaomise program "Hinagata Shten Dji", which celebrates the arrival in Edo of the Kamigata actor Ogino Izabur I.

1st lunar month of 1724: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Kawazu Sabur and Soga Tar in the new year drama "Yomeiri Izu Nikki".

11th lunar month of 1724: Sjr moves to the Nakamuraza and plays the role of Hosokawa Katsumoto in the kaomise program "Taiheiki Okuni Kabuki". His stage partners are Ichikawa Danjr II, Yamashita Kinsaku I, Matsumoto Kshir I and Ichikawa Monnosuke I.

1st lunar month of 1725: Sjr plays for the first time, in the same theater, the role of Kud Saemon Suketsune in the new year drama "Funadama Izu Nikki". His performance is well received by the audience and the critics.

11th lunar month of 1725: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Oguri Hangan in the kaomise program "Oguri Chseiden" ("Oguri in the palace of long life"). His stage partner in the role of Princess Terute is Yamamoto Hanazato.

1st lunar month of 1726: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Watanabe Tsuna in the new year program "Kadomatsu Shitenn", which commemorates the 22nd anniversary of the death of Ichikawa Danjr I.

Summer 1726: Sjr performs in the drama "Suehiro Nagoya". He portrays Nagoya Sanza, confronting Ichikawa Danjr II in the role of Fuwa Banzaemon in a great "Sayaate" scene.

11th lunar month of 1726: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Toriumi Yasabur in the kaomise drama "Kaomise Jnidan".

1st lunar month of 1727: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Soga Jr in the new year sogamono "Yuzuriha Gongen Soga". His stage partner in the role of Soga Gor is Ichikawa Danjr II.

3rd lunar month of 1727: Sjr and Ichikawa Danjr II play in the same theater the roles of Seigen and Utsumi Shintar in the drama "Konrei Otowa no Taki", which includes a koroshiba well received by the audience.

4th lunar month of 1727: Sjr and Ichikawa Danjr II play in the same theater the roles of the rival warlords Uesugi Kenshin and Takeda Shingen in the kaomise drama "Ky Gun'u no Hanagasane".

11th lunar month of 1727: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Hatake Rokur Saemon in the play "Yatsumune Taiheiki" [casting]. This program celebrates the return of tani Hiroji I (along with the Kamigata actor Kirinami Onoe) in Edo after 5 years spent in Kyto. This is also the first stage appearance for Ichikawa Masugor, the adopted son of Danjr.

1st lunar month of 1728: Sjr and Ichikawa Danjr II play in the same theater the roles of Soga Jr and Soga Gor in the new year sogamono "Soga Hraisan". Their stage partners in the roles of Kud Saemon Suketsune, Kobayashi no Asahina, iso no Tora (Jr's lover) and Kewaizaka no Shsh (Gor's lover) are Ogawa Zengor I, tani Hiroji I, Kirinami Onoe and Sanj Kantar II.

11th lunar month of 1728: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Minamoto Yoshitsune in the kaomise program "Hoshi Kabuto Goban Tadanobu". His stage partners in the roles of Shizuka Gozen and Ky no Kimi are Sanj Kantar II and Sodesaki Iseno I.

1st lunar month of 1729: premiere at the Nakamuraza of the short and bombastic "Ya-no-Ne" scene, which is played within the new year program "Suehiro Eh Soga". Sjr and Ichikawa Danjr II play the leading roles of the brothers Soga Jr and Soga Gor.

11th lunar month of 1729: great kaomise at the Nakamuraza. The 4 tachiyaku Ichikawa Danjr II, Band Hikosabur I, tani Hiroji I and Sjr perform together in the drama "Ume Goyomi Konrei Nagoya".

Fall 1730: the actors Ichikawa Danjr II, tani Hiroji I, Ogino Izabur I, Band Hikosabur I and Sjr play in the drama "Meigetsu Gonin Otoko" ("Five men under the August moon"), which is performed in the same theater [casting].

11th lunar month of 1730: Sjr performs in the same theater in the kaomise drama "Irifune Hiru-ga-Kojima".

1st lunar month of 1731: Sjr plays the role of Nagoya Sanza in the drama "Keisei Fukubiki Nagoya", which is performed in the same theater [casting].

Spring 1731: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Onitsugu in the drama "Muko Denju Nishiki no Tazuna", whose plot and characters belong to the "Oguri Hangan" world. His stage partners are Nakamura Shichisabur II (Oguri Hangan), Ogino Izabur I (Princess Terute), Segawa Kikunoj I (Tsumagi) and Ichikawa Danjr II (Got Saemon).

11th lunar month of 1731: Sjr performs in the same theater in the kaomise drama "Wag Ichiji Taiheiki", which celebrates the arrival in Edo of the Kamigata star Sadoshima Chgor I.

1st lunar month of 1732: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Kud Saemon Suketsune in the new year sogamono "Hatsugoyomi Ainai Soga". His stage partners in the roles of Soga Gor and Soga Jr are Ogino Izabur I and Sadoshima Chgor I.

9th lunar month of 1732: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Shigetada in the drama "ich Sakae Kagekiyo" [casting].

11th lunar month of 1732: Sjr plays at the Nakamuraza the role of Minamoto Yoritomo in the kaomise drama "Yamato Kotoba Imagawaj", which he wrote himself. This kaomise program welcomes in Edo the 2 Kamigata stars Anegawa Shinshir I and Sakakiyama Koshir I.

1st lunar month of 1733: Sjr, Anegawa Shinshir I and Ichikawa Szabur I play the roles of Kihei, Kurofune Chemon and Shhei in the drama "Kurofune Deiri Minato", which is staged at the Nakamuraza.

3rd lunar month of 1733: Sjr performs in the same theater in the drama "Tsuma Goi Sumidagawa", which he cowrote with Eda Yaichi and Kaneko Yasugor.

6th lunar month of 1733: Sjr, Anegawa Shinshir I and Ichikawa Szabur I play in the same theater the roles of tomo no Kuronushi, Godai Sabur and tomo Sanzen in the drama "Urawakami Iroha Komachi".

11th lunar month of 1733: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Minamoto no Yoritomo in the kaomise program "Nagi no Hana Asahi Genji". He welcomes the young actor Takinaka Utagawa, who arrives from Kamigata and settles in Edo.

1st lunar month of 1734: his master Sawamura Chjr I dies in saka. Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Nitta Shir and Ky no Jir in the new year drama "Jhakk Imay Soga". His stage partner in the role of Ky no Jir's wife is Segawa Kikunoj I.

11th lunar month of 1734: Sjr plays at the Nakamuraza the role of Kamatari in the kaomise drama "Kyganoko Secch no Tamatori", which celebrates the arrival in Edo of the Kamigata actor Nakamura Shingor I.

1st lunar month of 1735: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Oni Shinzaemon and Ky no Jir in the new year sogamono "Meizan Kasane Soga".

11th lunar month of 1735: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Abe no Yasunari in the kaomise drama "Tono Zukuri Shinoda Zuma"; Sjr, in duo with Anegawa Chiyosabur I, achieves a great success in the michiyuki "Shinoda Zuma Michiyuki". There is a shortage of stars in the Nakamuraza line-up, compared to the rival Ichimuraza, and Sjr is the only one to be at the top of the bill.

1st lunar month of 1736: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Soga Jr in the new year drama "Ykun Yoroi Soga". His stage partner in the role of iso no Tora (Jr's lover) is Anegawa Chiyosabur. The two actors achieve an amazing success by dancing together in "Keisei Asama-ga-Dake" at the end of the program.

8th lunar month of 1736: Sjr celebrates his final performance at the Nakamuraza, where he spent 13 years. He plays the role of Kan Shj in the drama "Kan Shj Nishiki no Tomozuna".

11th lunar month of 1736: Sjr moves to the Ichimuraza and plays the role of Kimura Bunz in the kaomise drama "Izu Genji Hrai Yakata", which celebrates the arrival in Edo from Kyto of the actor Tomizawa Montar I and the shmei of Tsuruya Nanboku II.

1st lunar month of 1737: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Shima no Kanzaemon in the new year drama "Ima ha Mukashi Omokage Soga".

Summer 1737: Sjr plays in the same theater the leading role of the play "Fry Shuten Dji".

11th lunar month of 1737: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Hasebe Chb in the kaomise program "Genji Kumo gi no Shiba". The line-up includes Band Hikosabur I, Tsuruya Nanboku II and Tomizawa Montar I.

1st lunar month of 1738: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Soga Jr, Kajiwara Genta and Shiraume Moemon in the new year sogamono "Ukematsuri Manbai Soga". According to the chronicles, the performance is not a success.

Fall 1738: Sjr and Matsumoto Kshir II achieve together a great success by playing in the same theater the roles of Tosa Jir and Sasaki Ganry in the revenge play "Katakiuchi Ganryjima".

11th lunar month of 1738: Sjr is back at the Nakamuraza and takes part in the kaomise program "Ume Yakata Inaba no Matsu", which celebrates the shmei of Sawamura Yodogor I and the arrival in Edo of the Kamigata actor Tatsuoka Hisagiku.

1st lunar month of 1739: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Ky no Jir in the new year drama "Kamakuraf Aratama Soga".

8th lunar month of 1739: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of the otokodate Tsurigane Yazaemon in the drama "Takaragane Chnin Kagami".

11th lunar month of 1739: Sjr plays at the Nakamuraza the role of Sano Genzaemon in the kaomise drama "Miyakozome Kaoru Hachinoki"; his stage partners are Yamamoto Kyshir I, Ichikawa Danz I, Nakamura Shichisabur II, Segawa Kikujir I and Nakamura Sukegor I.

1st lunar month of 1740: Sjr performs in the same theater in the new year drama "Hime Kazari Nishiki Soga".

11th lunar month of 1740: Sjr welcomes the young wakaonnagata Takinaka Shigenoi as a disciple and gives him the name of Sawamura Shigenoi. He moves to the Ichimuraza and plays the role of Nagoya Sanza in the kaomise program "Kichirei Imagawaj", which welcomes in Edo the Kamigata actor Matsushima Moheiji; Sjr confronts Band Hikosabur I in the role of Fuwa Banzaemon in a great "Sayaate" scene; Sjr's stage partner in the role of the courtesan Katsuragi (Sanza's lover) is Segawa Kikujir I.

1st lunar month of 1741: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Oni Shinzaemon in the new year drama "Wakamidori Kaneiri Soga".

3rd lunar month of 1741: Sjr and the Ichimuraza troupe perform the second part (nibanme) of "Wakamidori Kaneiri Soga", which is a triumphant success.

6th lunar month of 1741: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Hagiwara Itsuki in the drama "Katakiuchi Mitsugumi Sakazuki".

7th lunar month of 1741: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Sasaki Moritsuna in the drama "Yotsume Yui Katoku Sadame".

11th lunar month of 1741: Sjr moves to the Nakamuraza, where a great kaomise program is produced to celebrate the arrival in Edo of the actors Nakamura Tomijr I, Nakayama Shinkur I, Sanogawa Mangiku and Nakamura Shingor I; Sjr plays the leading role of En'ya Hangan in Hayakawa Denshir's kaomise drama "En'ya Hangan Koky no Nishiki".

1st lunar month of 1742: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Hida Saburozaemon, It Kur and the otokodate Chjr in the drama "Musume Soga Gaijin Yashima".

7th lunar month of 1742: premiere in Edo at Nakamuraza of the play "Keisei Hangonk" in which Sjr portrays Nagoya Sanza [casting].

11th lunar month of 1742: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Tkur Morinaga in the kaomise program "Keisei Akazawayama".

1st lunar month of 1743: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Ky no Jir, Shigetada and the otokodate Ume no Yoshibei in the new year drama "Kadomidori Tokiwa Soga". His stage partners are tani Hiroji I (Kurofune Chemon), Sanogawa Mangiku (Yamabuki) and Nakamura Tomijr I (the courtesan Hidaka).

5th lunar month of 1743: special performance at the Nakamuraza related to the exhibition of a sacred image of Shtoku Taishi in the Shitennji Temple in the district of Yshima. Sjr plays the roles of the minister Iname and Ukamuse no Hachibei in the drama "Yamato Morokoshi Aish Kagami".

Fall 1743: Sjr and Nakamura Tomijr I play in the same theater the roles of the courtesans Yufuran and Yatsuhashi in the drama "Futari Yatsuhashi". They decide to go back together to saka.

11th lunar month of 1743: Sjr achieves a great success in saka by playing the role of Ashikaga Yorikane in Namiki Ssuke's kaomise drama "Futatsu Biki Nishiki no Manmaku", which is produced at the nishi no Shibai by the zamoto Nakamura Jz I; his stage partner in the role of the courtesan Konohana is Nakamura Tomijr I.

12th lunar month of 1743: Sjr and Nakamura Tomijr I play in the same theater the roles of Sait Shkur and the courtesan Tyama in the drama "monguchi Yoroi Gasane".

3rd lunar month of 1744: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of tomo no Kuronushi and fude Hachir in the drama "sh Shinobu Ishi".

9th lunar month of 1744: Sjr performs in the drama "Yuki Moyoi Magaki no Hachinoki", which is staged in the same theater.

10th lunar month of 1744: Sjr moves to Kyto and takes part in a 10-days long special program commemorating the 10th anniversary of the death of his late master Sawamura Chjr I.

11th lunar month of 1744: Sjr is back in Edo. He plays the role of Ise no Sabur in the kaomise drama "Tono Zukuri Genji Jnidan", which is staged at the Ichimuraza.

1st lunar month of 1745: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Aburaya Shkur and Kagekiyo in the new year drama "Hatsu Goyomi Kotobuki Soga". His stage partners in the roles of Shigetada (Kagekiyo's ennemy) and Akoya (Kagekiyo's lover) are Band Hikosabur I and Onoe Kikugor I.

5th lunar month of 1745: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of Hiranoya Kyemon in the drama "Sato Gayoi Fujimi Saiky", whose plot and characters are related to the "Sonezaki Shinj" world. His stage partners in the roles of Hiranoya Tokub and Tenmaya Ohatsu are Ichikawa Danz III and Arashi Tominosuke I.

11th lunar month of 1745: Sjr plays at the Ichimuraza the roles of Yoshisada and Akamatsu Norisuke in the kaomise program "Onna Kusunoki Yosooi Kagami", which celebrates the arrival in Edo of the Kamigata onnagata Yoshizawa Ayame II.

1st lunar month of 1746: Sjr performs in the same theater in the new year drama "Kikeba Mukashi Soga Monogatari". Sjr uses back again the old ideogram "S" (associated to the concept of totality) only for this performance.

3rd lunar month of 1746: Sjr plays in the same theater the role of the shirozake seller Shinb in the drama "Sukeroku Kuruwa no Hanamichi". His stage partners in the roles of Sukeroku, the courtesan Agemaki and Iky are Onoe Kikugor I, Arashi Tominosuke I and Nakajima Mihoemon I.

5th lunar month of 1746: Sjr plays in the same theater the roles of Abe no Seimei and Urashima Gor (V) in the drama "Ichi no Tomi Seiwa Nendaiki". This play is based on the legendary character Urashima Tar and the playwright introduces several generations of the hero and his heirs: Urashima Tar (I), Jir (II), Sabur (III) and Shir (IV) are played by Ichikawa Ebiz II, Sawamura Harugor, Sawamura Kijr I and Ogino Izabur I. This unusual play is a triumphant success.

7th ~ 10th lunar months of 1746: Sawamura Sjr performs for a few months under the name of Sawamura Chjr III. His favourite disciple Sawamura Harugor takes the name of Sawamura Sjr (he's not considered as a member of the line) and holds it up to his death in the 10th lunar month of 1748.

11th lunar month of 1746: Sawamura Chjr III goes to Kyto where he takes back his previous name of Sawamura Sjr (old ideogram "S" associated to the concept of totality), performing in the drama "Tomi Yakata mu Kotoba", which is produced by the zamoto Nakamura Kumetar I. His stage partners are Nakamura Tomijr I, Anegawa Shinshir I, Sanogawa Jkichi (final performance before his death) and Nakamura Utaemon I.

1st lunar month of 1747: Sjr's rank in the Kyto hybanki, tachiyaku section, is goku-j-j-kichi (extreme - superior - superior - excellent).

3rd lunar month of 1747: Sjr and Nakamura Tomijr I perform together in the same theater in the drama "Kuronushi Iroha Mond".

6th lunar month of 1747: Sjr achieves an amazing success in Kyto by playing the role of kishi Miyauchi in the drama "yasu Yonjshichi Hon", which is produced by the zamoto Nakamura Kumetar I and whose script is based on the famous Ak vendetta.

Fall 1747: Sjr decides to play a jitsuaku role for his last performance in Kyto in the drama "Kant Koroku".

11th lunar month of 1747: Sawamura Sjr takes one more time the name of Sawamura Chjr III at the Nakamuraza, performing in the kaomise drama "Izu Gunzei Sum no Nishiki" and sharing the top of the bill with the 2 stars Ichikawa Ebiz II and Segawa Kikunoj I. This performance is a great success.

1st lunar month of 1748: Chjr's rank in the Edo hybanki is dai-goku-j-j-kichi (grand - extreme - superior - superior - excellent). He plays the role of Shigetada in the drama "Kazari Ebi Yoroi Soga", which is performed at the Nakamuraza.

5th lunar month of 1748: the drama "Yoshitsune Senbon Zakura" is performed for the first time in Edo, at the Nakamuraza; Chjr plays the roles of Igami no Gonta and Tadanobu [casting].

8th lunar month of 1748: premire for the puppets theater in saka, at the Takemotoza, of the play "Kanadehon Chshingura", written by Takeda Izumo, Miyoshi Shraku and Namiki Senry I. The main thema is the famous Ak vendetta and the vendetta leader puppet (boshi Yuranosuke) reproduces the acting of Sawamura Sjr in the role of kishi Miyauchi (Cf. 6th lunar month of 1747).

10th lunar month of 1748: his young disciple Sawamura Sjr dies.

11th lunar month of 1748: Chjr takes part in the Nakamuraza kaomise program "Onna Moji Heike Monogatari", playing the roles of Tada Kurando and Uji Tsen.

1749: Chjr adopts the young actor Utagawa Shirogor.

1st lunar month of 1749: Chjr's rank in the Edo hybanki is shigoku-j-j-kichi (exceedingly - superior - superior - excellent). He plays the roles of Yoban Jnai (Jnai the night watchman) and Komurasaki Kamon in the new year program "Otoko Moji Soga Monogatari", which is staged at the Nakamuraza.

3rd lunar month of 1749: Chjr plays in the same theater the role of It Kur in the drama "Sukeroku Kuruwa no Ie Zakura", sharing the stage with Ichikawa Ebiz II (Sukeroku), Nakamura Shichisabur II (the sake seller) and Segawa Kikujir I (Agemaki).

6th lunar month of 1749: the play "Kanadehon Chshingura" is produced at the Nakamuraza for the first time; Chjr plays the role of boshi Yuranosuke [casting].

11th lunar month of 1749: Chjr achieves a great success at the Nakamuraza by playing the roles of Bingo no Sabur and Hatake Rokur Saemon in the play "Onn Taiheiki". His adopted son Utagawa Shirogor takes officially the name of Sawamura Sjr II at the Moritaza, performing in "Bijo Kurabe Kiso no Kakehashi".

1st lunar month of 1750: Chjr plays the roles of Shigetada and Ume no Yoshibei in the Nakamuraza new year program "kazari Saiwai Soga".

4th lunar month of 1750: Chjr plays in the same theater the role of Shigetada in the drama "Shigetada Kariba Nikki".

5th lunar month of 1750: Chjr plays in the same theater the roles of Kanda Kamonnosuke and tomo no Kuronushi in the drama "Shio Mitsutama Kazaori Komachi".

9th lunar month of 1750: Chjr takes part in the special program "Kanadehon Shijshichiji" commemorating the first anniversary of the death of Segawa Kikunoj I.

11th lunar month of 1750: Chjr plays in the same theater the roles of Taira no Kiyomori and Kamata Hyei in the kaomise program "Wakaki no Ume Taira no Kiyomori".

1st lunar month of 1751: Chjr's rank in the Edo hybanki is shingoku-jzu-j-j-kichi (sincerely extreme - skilled - superior - superior - excellent). He plays the roles of Yaoya Kyb and Oni in the new year program "Izu Kosode Shbai Kagami", which is staged at the Nakamuraza.

3rd lunar month of 1751: Chjr plays in the same theater the role of Tganeya Moemon in the drama "Hinagata Fuji Miru Sato".

7th lunar month of 1751: premiere in Edo at the Nakamuraza of the play "Koi Nyb Somewake Tazuna" in which Chjr plays the role of Hachiz's mother [casting].

9th lunar month of 1751: Chjr achieves a great success by playing the role of Nagoya Sanza in the play "Keisei Fukubiki Nagoya", which is staged in the same theater. His stage partner in the role of the courtesan Katsuragi, Sanza's lover, is Segawa Kikujir I.

11th lunar month of 1751: Chjr plays in the same theater the role of Sano Genzaemon in the kaomise program "Honry Hachinoki-zome".

1st lunar month of 1752: Chjr's rank in the Edo hybanki is shin-goku-j-j-kichi (truly extreme - superior - superior - excellent). He plays the role of Kud Saemon Suketsune in the new year sogamono "Kuruwa Kuruwa Akinai Soga", which is staged at the Nakamuraza. His stage partners in the roles of the brothers Soga Gor and Soga jr are Ichikawa Yaoz I and Sawamura Sjr II.

4th lunar month of 1752: premiere in Edo at the Nakamuraza of the play "Ichi-no-Tani Futaba Gunki" in which Chjr plays the role of Rokuyata.

11th lunar month of 1752: Chjr moves to the Ichimuraza and plays the role of Ono no Tf in the kaomise program "Ume Sakura Ninin Semimaru".

1st lunar month of 1753: Chjr plays in the same theater the role of boshi Yuranosuke in the new year program "Haru Fukami Iroha Soga", which combines both the Soga Brothers and "Chshingura" worlds.

25th day of the 4th lunar month of 1753: his disciple Sawamura Genjir dies.

7th lunar month of 1753: the play "Hirakana Seisuiki" is staged for the first time in Edo, at the Ichimuraza [casting]. Chjr plays the role of Gonshir.

11th lunar month of 1753: Sawamura Chjr III moves to the Moritaza and takes the name of Suketakaya Takasuke I, playing 6 roles in the kaomise drama "Masakado Koky no Nishiki", which also celebrates the shmei of Ichikawa Szabur II; his stage partners are Morita Kan'ya VI, Sawamura Kijr I, Matsushima Moheiji, Tsuruya Nanboku II, Ogino Yaegiri II and Sawamura Utagiku.

1st lunar month of 1754: Takasuke plays in the same theater the roles of Hj Tokimasa and Gentta in the new year program "Mitsu Uroko Keisei Kagami".

11th lunar month of 1754: Takasuke becomes zagashira and takes part in the Moritaza kaomise program, playing the roles of Kiichi Hgen and Suzuki Sabur in the drama "Kiichi Hgen Shinan-guruma". His stage partners are Sanogawa Ichimatsu I, Azuma Tz II, Sawamura Otoemon II and Matsuyama Sanjr.

1st lunar month of 1755: Takasuke plays in the same theater the role of Kud Saemon Suketsune in the new year sogamono "Sono Sugata Ariake Soga"; his stage partners in the roles of the brothers Soga Gor and Soga jr are Matsuyama Sanjr and Ichikawa Senz.

5th lunar month of 1755: Takasuke plays the roles of boshi Yuranosuke and Amakawaya Gihei in the drama "Kanadehon Chshingura", which is staged at the Moritaza.

11th lunar month of 1755: Takasuke appears on stage for the last time, at the Moritaza, playing the role of tomo no Kuronushi in the drama "tomo no Kuronushi Sokutai Kagami".

1st lunar month of 1756: Takasuke dies in Edo. His tombstone is located in the precinct of temple Chenji in the district of Asakusa.

Comments:

Suketakaya Takasuke I was an outstanding actor, able to perform both tachiyaku and onnagata roles. He reached the highest levels of fame and was equally popular in Kyto, saka and Edo.

It is worth noting that he wrote around ten plays, brought a turban look-alike hat called sjr zukin into fashion and was the owner of an incense shop in the theater district of Sakai-ch in Edo.

Suketakaya Takasuke I was one of the 4 stars called Shitenn ("the big four", this expression comes from the four Deva kings in Buddhism) by the Edo audience (the three others were Ichikawa Danjr II, Band Hikosabur I and tani Hiroji I).

"Sawamura Sjr acted on the Edo stage with Danjr, the second, and is credited with greater versatility than the second Ichikawa. Born the son of a samurai of rank in Kyto, he was dismissed from his father's roof on account of dissipation. At first he served in a subordinate capacity in the house of Sawamura Chjr. Afterwards he undertook the duties of a clerk in the theatre, but at last requested to be made a follower of the Sawamura family. For some reason or other Sawamura refused to bestow his name upon this theatre upstart, there was a quarrel, and the would-be actor went off to seek another stage patron.
But as he could find no actor with sufficient faith in him to lend support, he was obliged to play in the unimportant theatres of the provinces. He was, therefore, unable to obtain the rank that would distinguish him as an actor of ability, and had to be content with the stage leavings, serving in the orchestra or playing small roles.
A reconciliation with his former master was at last effected; he began to play big roles and was immediately successful. Bad luck, however, pursued him, for recognition of his ability was delayed. The saka stage authorities, doubtless for reasons of their own, were not willing to grant him the rank to which he was entitled. Sawamura Chjr at last advised him to try his fortune in Edo.
On his first stage experience in the Shgun's capital he acted a minor rle at the Moritaza, and was not long in making a quick advance. Within five years he ranked second to Danjr, and after an absence of twenty-six years returned to saka with all his Edo Kabuki prestige behind him, and received a warmer welcome than when, as a greenhorn, he had attempted to obtain stage rank in vain.
One of Sjr's most famous rles was as Yuranosuke, the leader of the Forty-seven Rnin. Sjr liked to act ronin, for he was a free-lance himself, and he was seen in several pieces that had rnin as heroes. These plays were suppressed by the authorities in order to prevent the loyal retainers of the feudal lords from becoming dissatisfied. One of Sjr's rnin plays was based on the real story of the famous Forty-seven, whose master was forced to commit seppuku. They waited a good opportunity, and revenged themselves upon the enemy who had caused their lord's death, and then all took their own lives. The samurai's loyalty to his lord was not merely a popular stage theme, but in real life this laying down of life for a cause was characteristic of the people.
As he had been brought up the son of a samurai, he knew the N stage, and in all pieces influenced by the classic drama he was at home. In contrast to Danjr he spoke in the language of everyday life. Danjr delivered his lines as much as possible removed from the speech of ordinary mortals and their affairs. Sjr did not care for the elaborate make-up that was so thoroughly characteristic of the first two Ichikawas and the members of their family who were to come after. Sjr greatly depreciated Danjr's impossibilities. For instance, Danjr lifted up a house with both hands as a symbol of strength, which brought forth criticism from Sjr, whose faith in the real was so great that he never ventured to stray on the unknown highways and byways of the unreal." (Zo Kincaid in "Kabuki, the Popular Stage of Japan")

Suketakaya Takasuke I (right) and Matsuyama Sanjr (left) playing the roles of Kud Saemon Suketsune and Soga Jr in the new year sogamono "Sono Sugata Ariake Soga", which was staged at the Moritaza in the 1st lunar month of 1755

Prints & Illustrations

Print made by Okumura Toshinobu (1723~1729)

Print made by Torii Kiyonobu (1736~1737)

The Sawamura Tosshi line of actors

The Sawamura Sjr line of actors

The Sawamura Chjr line of actors

The Suketakaya Takasuke line of actors

 
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