|Dance title||Yakko Dôjôji|
|Authors||Kishizawa Shikisa VI (music)
Hanayagi Jusuke I (choreography)
"Yakko Dôjôji" was staged for the first time in July 1875 at the Shintomiza, under the title "Dôjôji Manete Mitsumen" ("the three lifelike masks of Dôjôji"), starring Nakamura Shikan IV in the leading role. The current version of "Yakko Dôjôji" mixes Nagauta and Tokiwazu musical ensembles. It is closely associated with the Bandô Mitsugorô line of actors.
"Yakko Dôjôji" is a humorous dance number parodying the famous "Musume Dôjôji" about a passionate girl who falls in love with a priest but takes revenge when she is jilted. A woman appears at the temple to dance for the dedication of the new bell, but soon she is revealed to be a male comic actor in disguise. Using three different masks which he changes in fast succession, the dancer tells the story of love between a man and woman, and the ministrations of a go-between. Finally, though, the comic dancer is also revealed to be a disguise for the vengeful spirit of the girl, who climbs on to the bell. Then, using a Kabuki technique called bukkaeri, the actor's costume is pulled down to show a black and gold geometric pattern symbolizing the scales of a serpent, while the supporting actors line up alongside to represent the tail.
Text courtesy of Jean Wilson (1999)
Most likely, this print depicts the performance of Nakamura Shikan IV in the dance "Dôjôji Manete Mitsumen", the first version of "Yakko Dôjôji", which was staged in July 1875 at the Shintomiza (the young bonze is his adopted son Nakamura Kotarô I)
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