The Japan Foundation 40th Anniversary The Japan Foundation Japanese-Language Institute, Kansai 15th Anniversary

The Japan Foundation Kyoto Office will organize “An Evening of Noh and Kyogen” to provide foreigners such as students and researchers from around the world with an opportunity to experience Japanese traditional culture.

Date Tuesday, 20 November 2012 from 6:30 p.m.
(Doors will open at 6:00 p.m.)
Venue Kyoto Kanze Kaikan Access(in Japanese)
44 Okazaki, Enshoji-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto
Programme A Kyogen play, NE ONGYOKU (Horizontal Singing)
Featuring: SHIGEYAMA Sengoro
A Noh play, IKKAKU SENNIN (The Horned Hermit)
Featuring: KATAYAMA Kurouemon

This is a part of the commemorative project to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Japan Foundation's establishment.

Programme Synopsis

Kyogen: NE ONGYOKU (Horizontal Singing)

Stage photograph of Ne Ongyoku

The Master happened to pass by Taro Kaja's room the previous night and heard him singing in a loud clear voice. He calls Taro Kaja and orders him to sing. Taro Kaja says the only time he can sing is when he is drunk, so the Master brings out sake. Taro Kaja drinks and drinks, but doesn't offer to sing. When the Master reminds him that he is to sing, Taro Kaja says that after getting drunk, he must lie down with his wife's knee for a pillow in order to be able to sing. The Master offers his own knee, Taro Kaja pretends his Master is his wife, and sings a very short song.

The Master orders him to try to sing sitting, then standing, but he pretends not to be able to make a sound. The Master is determined to hear him sing once more, so he offers his knee again.

While Taro Kaja is singing, the Master makes him sit up, and he stops, lays him down again, and he begins again. The Master does this several times, and with increasing speed, till Taro Kaja gets dizzy and begins to sing when he is up and stop when he is down. Finally he stands, and does a dance while singing.
The Master chases him off scolding him for lying.

<From A GUIDE TO KYOGEN by Don Kenny, Hino確認用ki Shoten, 1968>

Noh: IKKAKU SENNIN (The Horned Hermit)

Stage photograph of Ikkaku Sennin

This play is based on an old Indian legend about a horned hermit, born of a deer, who uses his magical power to keep the dragon kings, bringers of rain, shut up in a cave. The Court official tells how the country has been stricken by drought as a result and how the king has devised a scheme to bring relief. The official goes with a beautiful lady of the Court and, posing as travellers who have lost their way, they seek out the hermit. Beguiled by the beauty of the lady, the hermit is plied with wine and even joins in when she dances for him. Taking advantage of all this, the dragon gods escape and bring rain to save the crops.

<From A GUIDE TO NŌ 5th ed. by P. G. Oniel, Hinoki Shoten, 1981>


SHIGEYAMA Sengoro XIII - Okura School Kyogen actor-

Born in 1945. Eldest son of Shigeyama Sensaku IV (Living National Treasure and member of Japan Art Academy) of the Okura school of Kyogen. Sengoro studied under his grandfather Sensaku III and father Sensaku IV. He made his stage debut as a shite actor in 1949 in the play “Iroha.
Sengoro XIII performed overseas for the first time in 1973 in Europe, followed by a number of tours in Europe and the United States. He organized the Hanagata Kyogen Kai association of young Kyogen actors in 1976. He is recipient of the Kyoto Municipal New Artist Award (1986), the Kyoto Prefectural Culture Award’s Distinguished Service Prize (2004), and the National Arts Festival Grand Prize (2008). He is a holder of Important Intangible Cultural Properties (collective recognition).
In 1990 he was sent by the Japan Foundation to perform in a series of programs in Southeast Asia.
In 1994 he succeeded to the name Shigeyama Sengoro.



KATAYAMA Kurouemon-Kanze

KATAYAMA Kurouemon-Kanze School Noh actor-

A shite (primary actor) of the Kanze School of Noh, Kurouemon Katayama was born in 1964 as the first son of KATAYAMA Yusetsu (Kurouemon Katayama IX ・living national treasure). His grandmother was the late Yachiyo Inoue IV (also a living national treasure), former head of the Inoue School of the traditional Kyoto Kyomai dance, and his older sister is Yachiyo Inoue V, head of the Inoue School. From childhood, Katayama studied Noh under his father and then Tetsunojo Kanze VIII. Together with his father, he organizes the Katayama Regular Noh performances. He performs frequently in theaters throughout the country, and often joins overseas tours to Europe, the United States, and other countries as well.

Katayama is involved in a variety of activities which are designed to share the joy of Noh with younger generations, including visiting Noh classes at schools, production of Noh picture books, stage production making full use of visual images, and the creation of virtual Noh plays using computer graphics technology.

Kurouemon Katayama is a recipient of the Kyoto Prefectural Cultural Encouragement Award (1997), the Kyoto Municipal New Artist Award (2003), the New Artist Award of the National Arts Festival of the Agency for Cultural Affairs (2003), the Japan Traditional Cultures Foundation Award (2007), and He succeeded the stage name Kurouemon KATAYAMA, the 10th (2011). He is one of a number of individuals who have been collectively designated as holders of Intangible Cultural properties, and he also serves as director of the Kyoto Kanze Kai association and executive director of the Katayama Noh and Kyomai Preservation Foundation.

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