January Kabuki Program at Shimbashi Enbujo Theatre

Daily: January 3rd through 27th
*Evening Show on 20th is old out.

Box Seat : 20,000 / First Class Seat : 18,000 / Second Class A: 10,000 / Second Class B: 6,500 / Upper Tier A : 6,500 / Upper Tier B : 3,000
Unit: Japanese Yen (tax included)

This month's performance is to commemorate the Name Succession of Ichikawa Udanji III and the first stage of his son Ichikawa Ukon II.

Matinee (from 11:00 AM):

Full-length performance of FUTAGO SUMIDAGAWA

[Sumida River and the Twins]


Sarushima Sota, later Shichiro Tengu / Gunsuke, a servant : Ichikawa Ukon taking a new name Ichikawa Udanji
Hanjo Gozen : Ichikawa Ennosuke
Ooe no Masafusa : Ichikawa Chusha
Umewakamaru / Matsuwakamaru : Ichikawa Ukon making his debut
Yoshida no Shosho Yukifusa : Ichikawa Monnosuke
Agata Gon no Sho Takekuni : Ichikawa Ebizo

 It is a spectacular jidaimono play, a history play written by Chikamatsu Monzaemon based on a tragic legend about twins, their mother and their retainer in Heian era (10th century).
Incurring the enmity of Jirobo Tengu in Mt. Hiragatake, Yoshida no Shosho Yukifusa has his son Matsuwakamaru kidnapped and himself killed by Jirobo Tengu.
Matsuwakamaru's twin brother Umewakamaru is egged on by Kageyu Byoe Kagehaya and others, who plot to take over Yoshida clan, into drawing eyes on the carp in the scroll which he kept from the Imperial Court. Then the carp pops out of the scroll and Umewakamaru conceals himself as Kagehaya advises him to wait before he catches the carp and returns it to the scroll. Shosho's widow Hanjo Gozen goes insane as a result of excessive anxiety.
Awaji no Shichiro who was once a retainer of Yoshida clan names himself Sarushima Sota and makes a living as a slave trader to compensate for 10,000 gold coins he embezzled from his lord. He has 10 gold coins left to compensate for all sum as he beat a boy from the capital to death. He learns the boy is Umewakamaru and repents of what he has done. He thrusts at the ceiling and commits suicide by disembowelment in the gold coins he saved falling from the ceiling. His prayer with a concentration of his mind is heard and he becomes Shichiro Tengu to restore Yoshida clan.
Hanjo Gozen wanders to Sumida River in search for her son Umewakamaru. Hearing from Sota's wife Karaito that Umewakamaru is dead, she tries to throw herself into the river. But she reunites with Matsuwakamaru and recovers her sences. Shichiro Tengu flies with Hanjo Gozen and Matsuwakamaru to the capital.

Evening Show (from 4:30 PM):


[ The Death of Yoshikata ]


Kiso Senjo Yoshikata : Ichikawa Ebizo
Orihei, a servant, in reality Tada no Kurando : Ichikawa Chusha

 An act from a history play which shows the early rise of the Genji clan after a time of oppression.
 Yoshikata is the lone member of the Genji clan and pretends to have no interest in reviving its fortunes, but Yoshikata is about to have a son, who will eventually become the general Yoshinaka, who will lead the Genji to victory. However, Yoshikata himself is attacked and surrounded and dies in a spectacular scene where he falls from the top of a flight of stairs.


[ Stage Announcement ]


Ichikawa Ukon taking a new name Ichikawa Udanji
and other top rate actors are present.

 The names of actors have been handed down from generation to generation throughout Kabuki's long history. This month Ichikawa Ukon succeeds to the name of Ichikawa Udanji and this is the stage announcement of the succession. There is a close relationship between the stage and the audience in kabuki and this is shown by these ceremonial stage announcements where the top stars of the company address the audience directly.


[ Kagekiyo's Contest of Strength with Shiro ]


Shichibe, a pilgrim, in reality Akushichibyoe Kagekiyo : Ichikawa Ukon taking a new name Ichikawa Udanji
Jirozo, a mendicant Zen priest, in reality Mionoya Shiro : Nakamura Baigyoku

 A short play by Kawatake Mokuami based on a legend in 12th century.
In the wars between the Genji and Heike clans, an episode at the battle of Yashima became famous. Kagekiyo on the Heike side and Mionoya on the Genji side fought and when halberds and swords proved ineffective, one grabbed the flap of the other's helmet and they tugged back and forth until the flap of the armor tore off and they both fell on the ground. They laughed praising the other's strength and that began the battle in earnest. This play is a kind of parody of that incident. In a hut on Mt. Maya above present day Kobe, a beggar and a pilgrim meet and chat and suddenly, a treasure of the Heike clan appears. They fight over the treasure and eventually re-enact the tug of war over the armor.



[ The Black Mound on the Adachi Plain ]


Iwate, an old woman, actually the demon of the Adachi plain : Ichikawa Ennosuke

 One of the most famous dances Ennosuke III performed, this piece was originally written for his grandfather. A woman has grown bitter at the world after being rejected by her husband and now lives in seclusion, killing travelers and becoming a kind of demon. However, when she gives shelter to a holy man and his party, she rejoices at this opportunity to find salvation. She goes to get firewood to keep her visitors warm, cautioning them not to look into the back room, where the bodies of her victims are. She dances in joy among the dry autumn grasses under the full moon at her chance for absolution. But the porter in the holy man's party looks in the back room and they all leave in a panic. The old woman is furious at being betrayed and this transforms her into a demon, which is finally vanquished by the power of the holy man.



* This performance has no English "G-Mark Guide" (captioning) rental service.