March at the Kabukiza Theatre
Daily: Mar 4 (Thu) - Mar 29 (Mon), 2021
Part1: 11:00 AM
Part2: 2:00 PM
Part3: 6:30 PM
*No performances on the 11th (Thu) and the 22nd (Mon).
*The theatre will open 40 minutes before the performance starts.
●Notice about the Kabukiza Theatre's operations from 2021
●Precautionary Measures at the Kabukiza Theatre
On sale: from Feb 14 (Sun), 2021 10:00AM(JST)
Box Seat: 16,000 /First Class Seat: 15,000 /Second Class Seat: 11,000 /Upper Tier A : 5,000 /Upper Tier B : 3,000
Unit: Japanese Yen (tax included)
*Children over the age of 4 must purchase tickets to enter.
*Single Act Seats are not for sale.
*One section of the auditorium will be sold in two-seat blocks, with every third seat vacant.
*Tea will not be offered at the Box Seats. Please refrain from eating at seats as well.
Kabukiza Theatre (at TOKYO) Theatre Information
In March the program is divided into three parts and is full of masterpieces.
In Part 1 we will see two flowery dance plays befitting the coming of spring, in Part 2 there are two popular plays (a historical and a domestic one), and in Part 3 we have a short scene from a history play and masterpieces of dance.
Though shorter than usual programs, you can still enjoy the world of kabuki to the full. Have a happy time in spring at the Kabukiza.
SARUWAKA EDO NO HATSUYAGURA
['Saruwakaza, the First Kabuki Theatre in Edo']
- Nakamura Kankurō
- Izumo no Okuni
- Nakamura Shichinosuke
- Fuku, Manbē's wife
- Ichikawa Komazō
- Manbē of the Fukutomi lumber yard
- Bandō Yajūrō
- Itakura Katsushige, the magistrate
- Nakamura Senjaku
On its journey to Edo (the old name for Tokyo) the troupe led by Izumo no Okuni and Saruwaka which is popular in Kyoto encounters the lumber merchant Manbē. He is on his way to present an offering to the shogunate family, but he is held up by ruffians. Saruwaka summons the young actors of his troupe and takes the lead in having them carry Manbē's offering. The magistrate gives Saruwaka an estate at Nakabashi in Edo as a reward, permits him to perform plays there and orders Manbē to build a theatre. Saruwaka rejoices at this and in return he performs a dance.
MODORIKAGO IRO NI AIKATA
['The Returning Palanquin']
- Naniwa no Jirosaku
- Onoe Shōroku
- Tayori, a child apprentice to a courtesan
- Nakamura Kangyoku
- Azuma no Yoshirō
- Kataoka Ainosuke
This classic is a popular dance filled with many highlights and a charming old-world atmosphere. Two palanquin bearers, Jirosaku and Yoshirō, return from the pleasure quarters carrying a 'kamuro', a child apprentice to a courtesan. They stop to rest and begin to boast to each other of their respective hometowns and pleasure quarters in Osaka and Edo. Finally, however, the men retrieve objects concealed in each other's breast pocket, revealing their true identities. Only now do they realize that they are sworn enemies: a samurai and a notorious thief!
Ichinotani Futaba Gunki
['Kumagai's Battle Camp' from 'The Chronicles of the Battle of Ichinotani']
- Kumagai no Jirō Naozane
- Kataoka Nizaemon
- Minamoto no Yoshitsune
- Nakamura Kinnosuke
- Sagami, Naozane's wife
- Kataoka Takatarō
- Tsutsumi no Gunji
- Bandō Kamezō
- Lady Fuji
- Ichikawa Monnosuke
- Byakugō no Midaroku, in reality, Yaheibyōe Munekiyo
- Nakamura Karoku
This is a play based on episodes from the battle of Ichinotani, one of the climactic struggles between the Heike and Genji clans in the 12th century.
At this battle, the Genji warrior Naozane attacks Taira no Atsumori. When Naozane returns to his battle camp, he finds his wife, Sagami, and Atsumori's mother, Lady Fuji. He tells them how he killed Atsumori and he shows the severed head of Atsumori to his lord Minamoto no Yoshitsune. However, in reality, the head is that of Naozane's own son. Yoshitsune suggested to Naozane indirectly that he sacrifice his son as a substitute for Atsumori, the son of the former Emperor.
After doing so, and feeling the transience of our existence, Naozane rejects the life of a warrior to become a Buddhist priest.
YUKI NO YŪBE IRIYA NO AZEMICHI
['Naojirō and Michitose']
- Kataoka Naojirō
- Onoe Kikugorō
- Nakamura Tokizō
- Kurayami no Ushimatsu
- Ichikawa Danzō
- Jōga, a blind masseur
- Nakamura Tōzō
The thief Naojirō has been betrayed and is on the run. His lover, the courtesan Michitose, becomes ill from grief at not being able to see Naojirō.
The scene is set at a soba noodle shop. It is a cold spring night in the Iriya district of Edo. Naojirō encounters the masseur Jōga who visits Michitose every evening to treat her. Thanks to Jōga's kindness, Naojirō can risk one last meeting with his lover, but he has never revealed his true identity as a thief to her and as far as she knows, he is a wealthy merchant.
On a freezing, snow-bound night, in the final romantic scene accompanied by the sensuous tones of the Kiyomoto narrative singers, the two lovers Naojirō and Michitose meet. However, many pursuers appear and struggle with him. Realizing that the situation is hopeless, Naojirō cries out to Michitose that they will never meet again in this world.
SANMON GOSAN NO KIRI
['Goemon on the Temple Gate’]
- Ishikawa Goemon
- Nakamura Kichiemon
- Nakamura Kashō
- Nakamura Tanenosuke
- Mashiba Hisayoshi
- Matsumoto Kōshirō
Though short, this play is one of the most visually spectacular in kabuki. The famous villain Ishikawa Goemon is sitting on top of the large gate of Nanzenji Temple enjoying the view of cherry blossoms in full bloom. His enjoyment of the scene is cut short, however, for the general Hisayoshi who has killed his father appears.
['The Sumida River']
- Hanjo no mae
- Bandō Tamasaburō
- A boatman
- Nakamura Ganjirō
This is one of the most famous dance dramas in kabuki with a deep and universal theme. A mother wanders in madness searching for her son, stolen away by a slave trader. She comes to the Sumida River and encounters a boatman who tells her the sad story of a small boy who died on the road here. Much to her shock, this is none other than her own child.
- A geisha
- Bandō Tamasaburō
This dance is accompanied by a masterpiece of 'jiuta' music (country songs from the Kyoto/Osaka region) that was composed in the 1780s. It is about a real geisha and her pathetic and beautiful feelings. A geisha who is now a nun recalls her old days when she waited for her lover’s visit alone on a snowy night.
['The Cape of the Temple Bell']
- Bandō Tamasaburō
This is a 'jiuta' version of the dance masterpiece ‘Kyōkanoko Musume Dōjōji’. The story is a sequel to the legend of Kiyohime, a maiden who pursued the priest Anchin to Dōjōji Temple where he hid himself under the temple bell. Transforming into a fiery serpent, Kiyohime destroyed the bell and the priest beneath. However, despite being based on the legend, this version focuses mainly on a woman’s many aspects, such as romantic attachment, charm, and so on.