Book review, movie criticism

Monday, July 8, 2013

Japanese kabuki play, Shunkan

Japanese kabuki play, Shunkan, all in youtube

Shunkan in Kabuki

This work, written by Chikamatsu Monzaemon, is based on part of the Heike monogatari (tales of Heike [the Taira clan]).
Currently the only scene performed is the one about the warrior Shunkan and others who were exiled to Kikaigashima (Kikai island) for the crime of plotting a rebellion against the Taira Kiyomori, so this work is commonly called "Shunkan."
A shamensen (ship bearing pardons) has arrived from miyako (the capital) to take back 3 exiles: Shunkan, Tamba no Shosho Naritsune, and Heihangan Yasuyori. Shunkan, informed that his wife, left behind in miyako, has been killed, offers his place on the ship to the female diver, Chidori, who is married to Naritsune. This is forbidden by the messenger, Seno Taro. In despair, Shunkan kills Seno. For this crime, Shunkan must remain on the island. Shunkan, left alone on the island, watches the ship until it is out of sight.

You can see the Noh play with the same story, in Kikaighashima

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