AUGUST 2021
Cancellation of one Kabuki program in August 2021 due to coronavirus (COVID-19)!!!

5 shows in T˘ky˘ (Kabukiza, National Theatre, Nihonbashi K˘kaid˘), 1 in Ky˘to (Minamiza), 2 1 in ďsaka (National Bunraku Theatre, Kintetsu Art Kan) and 1 in Hakodate (Hakodate Shimin Kaikan)!

  • Matsumoto K˘shir˘, Nakamura Kankur˘, Nakamura Shichinosuke, Nakamura Jakuemon, Nakamura Senjaku, Ichikawa Ennosuke, Nakamura Kotar˘, Ichikawa Monnosuke, Kataoka Kamez˘, Nakamura Baishi, Band˘ Minosuke and Nakamura Hayato perform at the Kabukiza!
  • Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘ performs at the Minamiza!
  • All the others great Kabuki actors are on vacation ...
  • Kabukiza (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 3 ~ 28 August 2021
    Hachigatsu Hanagata Kabuki
    August Young Actors Kabuki
    1st program

    Kagamiyama Gonichi no Iwafuji

    2nd program

    Shinkei Kasane-ga-Fuchi (Toyoshiga no Shi)

    Adayume

    3rd program

    Genpei Nunobiki no Taki
    (Yoshikata Saigo)

    Date Kurabe Kuruwa no Sayaate

    Sanja Matsuri

    Casting

    Matsumoto K˘shir˘, Nakamura Kankur˘, Nakamura Shichinosuke, Nakamura Jakuemon, Nakamura Senjaku, Ichikawa Ennosuke, Nakamura Kotar˘, Ichikawa Monnosuke, Kataoka Kamez˘, Nakamura Baishi, Band˘ Minosuke, Nakamura Hayato, Ichikawa Komaz˘, Nakamura Yonekichi, Nakamura Kash˘, Band˘ Shingo, Ichikawa Omez˘, Nakamura Kikaku, Matsumoto Kingo, Ichikawa Emisabur˘, Ichikawa Emiya, Ichikawa Somegor˘, Nakamura Tsurumatsu, Nakamura Takanosuke, Ichikawa Danko, Ichikawa Otora, Nakamura Toranosuke, Ogawa S˘ma, Ogawa Hiroharu

    Comments

    The August Young Actors Kabuki performances at the Kabukiza with Ichikawa Ennosuke in "Kotsuyose no Iwafuji", the Nakamuraya brothers in the kaidanmono "Toyoshiga no Shi" and Matsumoto K˘shir˘ for the second time in his career in "Yoshikata Saigo".

  • Gonichi no Iwafuji:
    (The Return of Iwafuji)
    This play is a sequel to an earlier classic in which the evil lady-in-waiting Iwafuji caused the death of her rival Onoe by excessively persecuting her, including beating Onoe with a saddle. One ear later, Onoe's servant Onoe II (Nakamura Jakuemon), who avenged her death by killing Iwafuji, has come to pray for the comfort of Iwafuji's spirit (Ichikawa Ennosuke). Iwafuji's bones come together magically and her spirit floats among the cherry blossoms. Later the spirit appears at the mansion to beat Onoe II with a saddle. Evil forces are plotting to take over the Taga household where Onoe works. The servant Torii Matasuke (Band˘ Minosuke) is harboring the faithful retainer Motome (Ichikawa Monnosuke). He decides to kill his lord's consort, an evil woman who is one of the main forces in the plot, but through the scheming of another, he ends up killing his lord's wife instead. The death is blamed on Motome, and Matasuke must take his own life to clear Motome's name. In the end, the lord defeats all the evil forces threatening his realm and the ghost of Iwafuji returns to the afterworld. This play is one of the many that the popular star Ennosuke has revived and adapted to his own personal style, and it features spectacular special effects and large-scale fight scenes.
  • Toyoshiga no Shi: the story of the vengeful spirit of the horribly disfigured woman Kasane is one of the most famous in Japanese folklore. In the Meiji period, rakugo storyteller Sanyűtei Ench˘ reworked this into a modern tale of psychology. The most famous episode shows Toyoshiga (Nakamura Shichinosuke), a middle-aged music teacher who is passionately in love with her young student Shinkichi (Nakamura Tsurumatsu). Shinkichi is in love with an attractive young neighbor, Ohisa (Nakamura Kotar˘) and wants to get away from Toyoshiga, who is ill and demanding, but even death will not stop her desperate passion. Featuring also Nakamura Kankur˘ and Nakamura Senjaku as the rakugo storyteller Sanch˘ and Shinkichi's uncle Kanz˘.
  • Adayume:
    (Empty Dream)
    A raccoon dog falls in love with the courtesan Miyuki (Nakamura Shichinosuke) in Ky˘to's Shimabara Pleasure Quarters but his feelings are unrequited. Hoping to win her heart by some means or other, the racoon dog transforms into her dancing master whom she adores and visits her. In this disguise, it discloses its feelings for her and she is overjoyed, for she has been suffering from her unrequited love for her dancing master. However, one day, the real master appears in front of them... The depiction of the raccoon dog's painful love for the courtesan by way of a humorous dance is one of the highlights. In the latter half, its pure and wholehearted devotion is portrayed with great pathos. There is both laughter and sorrow as the story unfolds peacefully like a fairy tale. Starring Nakamura Kankur˘ in the role of the raccoon dog originally created for his grandfather Nakamura Kanzabur˘ XVII.
  • Yoshikata Saigo: the full-length play shows the early rise of the Genji clan after a time of oppression. Yoshikata (Matsumoto K˘shir˘) is the lone member of the Genji clan and pretends to have no interest in reviving its fortunes, but Yukitsuna (Nakamura Hayato) a good-humored footman who is actually a spy, realizes his true intentions. Yoshikata is about to have a son, the general Yoshinaka, who will lead the Genji to victory, but Yoshikata himself is attacked and surrounded and dies in a spectacular scene where he falls from the top of a flight of stairs.
  • Sayaate: This famous act is set in the main avenue of the Yoshiwara Pleasure Quarters where cherry blossoms are in full bloom. Two men appear: Fuwa Banzaemon (Nakamura Kash˘) in a haori coat patterned with a design of lightning bolts, and Nagoya Sanza (Nakamura Hayato), dressed in a short-sleeved kimono and a haori coat with a pattern of swallows in the rain. After their scabbards brush against each other as they pass, they begin arguing and draw their swords, but the proprietress of a teahouse (Band˘ Shingo) mediates between them.
  • Sanja Matsuri: a vigorous dance starring Ichikawa Somegor˘ and Ichikawa Danko. It is based on dolls at the Sanja festival showing the founding of the temple at Asakusa when two fishermen found a golden image of the Kannon in their nets. In this case, the holy spirits that they encounter are two spheres with the characters for "good" and "evil" on them, and the spirits possess the two and animate them into a lively dance.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    Minamiza (Ky˘to)
    Dates 2 ~ 24 August 2021
    Band˘ Tamasabur˘ Tokubetsu Buy˘ K˘en
    Band˘ Tamasabur˘ Special Dance Performances
    Program

    Tsuru Kame

    Nihon Furisode Hajime

    Casting

    Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘, Kawai Yukinoj˘, Nakamura Hashinosuke, Nakamura Fukunosuke, Nakamura Utanosuke

    Comments

    A special Buy˘ program starring the amazing Living National Treasure onnagata Band˘ Tamasabur˘ in Ky˘to at the Minamiza.

  • Tsuru Kame: the crane (tsuru) is said to live for a thousand years, the tortoise (kame) is said to live for ten thousand years. Together, they are a traditional symbol of longevity. There is no particular plot to this play, but simply shows a visit by the empress to the Moon Pavilion where two courtiers dance as the spirits of the crane and tortoise. Starring Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘ as the empress, Nakamura Utanosuke as the spirit of the crane and Nakamura Hashinosuke (or Nakamura Fukunosuke) as the spirit of the tortoise.
  • Nihon Furisode Hajime: this dance is a rare example of a story from ancient Japanese mythology in a puppet play by Chikamatsu Monzaemon I adapted for the Kabuki theater. As part of an annual ritual, Princess Inada has been chosen to be sacrificed to a fierce serpent that lives in the mountains of Izumo. The serpent arrives in the guise of a beautiful princess, but before it can attack it is attracted to eight jars full of sake. The jars are a trap planted by the god Susanoo, who confronts the beast in its true form as an eight-headed serpent, to save the princess. Starring Living National Treasure Band˘ Tamasabur˘ as the serpent, with Nakamura Hashinosuke (or Nakamura Fukunosuke) and Kawai Yukinoj˘ in the roles of Susanoo and Princess Inada.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    National Theatre (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 6 ~ 7 August 2021
    Odori no Kai
    Program

    Komori

    Makasho

    Shunky˘ Kagami Jishi

    Comments

    1st edition of a gala starring Nakamura Tanenosuke.

  • Komori: a young girl (Nakamura Tanenosuke) runs onto stage chasing after a bird that has stolen the abura-age (deep fried t˘fu) she just bought. The girl is babysitting and begins to daydream as she tries to calm the crying baby strapped to her back. Dancing to a tune based on what was popular at the time, she plays doll shop, sings of love and romance and finally describes what life was like in her hometown.
  • Makasho: This dance portrays a pilgrim (Nakamura Tanenosuke) during the Edo period who would go on a pilgrimage, ringing a bell and calling out for alms.
  • Kagami Jishi: one of the most important dances for onnagata female role specialists and is an audience favorite. The maidservant Yayoi performs an auspicious lion dance for the Sh˘gun in his opulent palace, but she gradually finds herself under the control of the lion spirit. In the second half of the dance, the lion spirit itself appears and performs its crazed dance among peonies and fluttering butterflies. Starring Nakamura Tanenosuke as both Yayoi and the spirit of the lion.
  • Sources: Earphone Guide Website or Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    Dates 13 ~ 14 August 2021
    Ne no Kai
    Program

    Shiki no Yamanba

    Nank˘

    Shin Hashiradate

    Katsuragawa Renri no Shigarami (Obiya)

    Comments

    23rd edition of the summer program of the association Ne no Kai (the Sound Association). The first items in this program are only music performances. The last item is staged under the guidance of Nakamura Ganjir˘ with nadai actors like Nakamura Ky˘z˘, Ichikawa Shinz˘ or Ichikawa Shinjűr˘.

  • Obiya: one of the most famous love stories in Kabuki is the love of the young girl Ohan for her middle-aged neighbour Ch˘emon, finally culminating in a love suicide between the two. This month at the National Theatre features the drama leading up to the romance between the two. Ch˘emon is the proprietor of an obiya (a kimono belt shop) and his wife is very understanding, but the pressures of his family and the lustful jealousy of the boy apprentice next door finally drive Ch˘emon and Ohan (also ACT), the beautiful young daughter of the family next door, together. This eventually leads to tragedy.
  • Sources: Sh˘chiku Kabuki Official Website

    Dates 18 ~ 22 August 2021
    Chigyokai/Kabukikai
    Program

    Taimen Hana no Harukoma

    Tsuri Onna

    Shin Sarayashiki Tsuki no Amagasa
    (Sakanaya S˘gor˘)

    Comments

    27th edition of the common program for 2 associations, the Chigyokai (the Young Fishes Association) and the Kabukikai (the Kabuki Association), which stars stars' disciples in the leading roles of all the items in the program under the guidance of Nakamura Tokiz˘, Onoe Kikunosuke and Ichikawa Danz˘.

    Kintetsu Art Kan (ďsaka)
    Dates ?? ~ ?? August 2021 [CANCELLED]
    Sora no Kai
    Program

    ???

    Casting

    Kataoka Matsujűr˘, Kataoka Senjir˘, Kataoka Senju, ???

    Comments

    The 7th gala of the Sora no Kai, in ďsaka at the Kintetsu Art Kan, which stars mostly disciples of the Matsushimaya guild, has been cancelled in 2021. These performances are entitled Abeno Kabuki (Abeno is the name of a famous district in ďsaka).

    National Bunraku Theatre (ďsaka)
    Dates 26 ~ 27 August 2021
    Kamigata Kabukikai
    Program

    Futatsu Ch˘ch˘ Kuruwa Nikki (Hikimado)

    Manete Irodoru Nanatsu Iroha

    Comments

    31st edition of the Kamigata Kabukikai (the Kamigata Kabuki Association), a summer program in ďsaka which stars Kamigata Kabuki stars' disciples in the leading roles under the guidance of Living National Treasure Kataoka Nizaemon, Kataoka Gat˘ and the dance master Yamamura Tomogor˘ III.

    Nihonbashi K˘kaid˘ (T˘ky˘)
    Dates 10 August 2021
    Jűjiya Nihonbashi Buy˘ K˘en
    Jűjiya Nihonbashi Dance Performances
    Program

    Fuji Musume

    K˘j˘

    Ninin Sh˘j˘

    Casting

    ďtani Keiz˘, ďtani Ryűsei, ďtani Keitar˘

    Comments

    1st edition of the Jűjiya Dance Gala at the Nihonbashi Gekij˘ (Nihonbashi Auditorium), located within the Nihonbashi K˘kaid˘ (Nihonbashi Community Center).

    Hakodate Shimin Kaikan (Hakodate)
    Dates 13 ~ 15 August 2021
    Jűjiya Nihonbashi Buy˘ K˘en
    Jűjiya Nihonbashi Dance Performances
    Program

    Fuji Musume

    K˘j˘

    Ninin Sh˘j˘

    Casting

    ďtani Keiz˘, ďtani Ryűsei, ďtani Keitar˘

    Comments

    1st edition of the Jűjiya Dance Gala in Hakodate Hakodate Shimin Kaikan (Hakodate City Hall).

     
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