Danjuro's Girls: Women on the Kabuki Stage (Palgrave Studies by L. Edelson

By L. Edelson

Danjuro’s ladies is an interesting historical past of Japan’s lady kabuki troupes, delivering a penetrating research into 3 generations of kabuki actresses linked to the well known Ichikawa Danjuro performing dynasty. Contextually grounding early lady precedents in kabuki, the ebook makes a speciality of the Ichikawa ladies’ Kabuki Troupe, a special and trailblazing corporation based after Japan’s defeat in global battle II. The troupe turned a countrywide sensation within the Nineteen Fifties, in brief turning into a part of the another way impenetrable all-male kabuki institution. Drawing on quite a few interviews, in addition to written and visible fundamental resources, Danjuro’s women demanding situations readers to re-evaluate traditional notions approximately gender, functionality, and conventional eastern theatre.

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Extra info for Danjuro's Girls: Women on the Kabuki Stage (Palgrave Studies in Theatre and Performance History)

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Beginning with this unique performance, fans could chart the growth of the daughters. Some of them might have envisioned the young girls one day performing with their own daughters. Following their Kabuki-za debut, the girls performed in a new dance piece, The Fulling Block, probably an adaptation of the eponymous nō play, and, in September 1893 at the Kabuki-za, Jitsuko played Hitomaru and Fukiko played “the female Tomi” in The Daughter of Kagekiyo. 39 Jitsuko’s and Fukiko’s performance careers, however, were curtailed abruptly when they became ill.

Com - licensed to Taiwan eBook Consortium - PalgraveConnect - 2011-05-06 Danjūrō IX and the Actress Question Danjūrō’s Girls Kumehachi never reported that she was going to discard her old name, but she did announce that she was going to take a new one. As we have seen, the critic Yoda Gakkai had been a fan of Kumehachi for more than a decade, allegedly giving her the nickname the “Female Danjūrō” in the mid-1880s, but now he felt the time had come to give her a new name. In June 1890, after seeing her perform at the Azuma-za, he wrote a poem in kanbun (literary Chinese) in her honor.

As the head of the Naritaya house of kabuki actors, Danjūrō occupied arguably the most powerful position in the actor hierarchy. 8 Particularly appealing to the society was the fact that Danjūrō had demonstrated a sincere interest in kabuki reform. Since the early 1870s, he had advocated breaking with the “period piece” (jidaimono) conventions that blurred the historical “truths” of the past, often the result of government-imposed censorship. Dubbed sarcastically katsureki-geki or “living history plays,” these new works experimented with storylines, staging, costumes, and language.

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