Hinoemata Kabuki

桧枝岐歌舞伎

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

The farmers of Hinoemata village have been performing kabuki (noson kabuki) for more than 200 years. In the olden days, villagers who had the chance to enjoy a kabuki on their way to or from pilgrimage to the Ise grand shrine learned it by heart. People constructed a building which was used both as a hall of shrine and a playhouse, in the front of the main shrine for the tutelary deity. Villagers were enthusiastic about the cities' splendid shows, which they had never seen before and started practicing for themselves. Everyone in the community, regardless of their age, was involved as performers, assistants, spectators, etc., and this system of organisation continued for many generations, cultivating a rich cultural sensitivity in the area. 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

 

In Hinoemata rural kabuki re-enacts tales of the medieval Taira (Heike) clan, whom the villagers claim as their ancestors (Refer to the section “Miyajima Bugaku” which will be uploaded later). Originally, when boys became 15 years old, they were allowed to join kabuki. In rural kabuki it is not unusual to see women playing female roles although mainstream kabuki theatres have only male actors. When the story rises to a climax, the actors strike a mie pose and stand like statues. This is the highlight of their performance. 

About 40 years ago there were 30 plays in Hinoemata but now the repertoire is down to 11 plays, mainly because the village lost their tayu story chanters and their shamisen players. These days, the chanting and music come from a cassette tape. The villagers are a little pessimistic about future. There are some keen young actors, but the main worry is finding people to take over from some of the support staff when they retire.

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 

 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved.

 

 

 

Copyright (C) 2003-2006: Kari Gröhn All rights reserved. 


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