Kabuki Performance: The 60th Anniversary of Japan-Israel Diplomatic Relations

Photo of Kabuki Performance: The 60th Anniversary of Japan-Israel Diplomatic Relations

The Japan Foundation conducted Kabuki performance in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv in Israel. This is the first Kabuki performance in Israel in its history, which marks a milestone as it is the full-scale performing arts production of Kabuki.  

Titles to be performed included “Sagi Musume (The Heron Maiden)” and “Shakkyo (Lion Dance)”, contrasting the lyrical style of the onnagata (actor specializing female roles) with dynamic, acrobatic style in the heroic Lion Dance. This authentic Kabuki theater proudly celebrated the 60th anniversary of Japan-Israel diplomatic relations, attended by leading figures Kyozo Nakamura, onnagata and Matsugoro Onoe, tachiyaku (leading actor). Eight performers in total (nagauta, shamisen and narimono) also joined this prestigious stage.

Organizer The Japan Foundation
Co-organizer Embassy of Japan in Israel, Suzanne Dellal Center, Israel Museum
Producer Shochiku, Co., Ltd
Cooperation Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings

Performances in Jerusalem

Date: August 30, 2012 8:00 p.m. and August 31, 2012 2:00 p.m.
Venue: Auditorium of Israel Museum, Jerusalem

  • Lecture: “The history of Kabuki theater” by Matsugoro Onoe
  • Lecture: “The basics of onnagata” by Kyozo Nakamura
  • Lecture: “Music and sound effects in Kabuki theater” by Matsugoro Onoe

Performance: “Sagi Musume” by Kyozo Nakamura and nagauta hayashi performers

Related exhibition: “Crossplay : Male Actor, Female Roles in Kabuki Theatre”
Date: July 3 to November 10, 2012
Venue: Focus Gallery of Israel Museum, Jerusalem
For more details, please visit here.

Workshops and Performances in Tel Aviv


  • Date: September 3, 2012 3:00 p.m.  Venue: Seminar HaKibbutzim
  • Date: September 4, 2012 11:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.  Venue: Beit Zvi

Date: September 6, 2012 9:00 p.m. and September 7, 2012 10:00 p.m.
Venue: Suzanne Dellal Center

Lecture: “The history of Kabuki theater” by Matsugoro Onoe
Performance: “Sagi Musume” by Kyozo Nakamura and nagauta hayashi performers
Lecture: “Costume of tachiyaku: making process of Shishi (lion)” by Matsugoro Onoe
Performance: “Shakkyo” by Kyozo Nakamura and Matsugoro Onoe


Kyozo Nakamura

Photo of Kyozo  NakamuraBorn in 1955 in Tokyo. He graduated from the Hosei University (Bachelor degree in Japanese Literature). He joined the Japan Arts Council’s Training School for Kabuki Actors as a 6 term trainee. In September 1982, he commenced in a professional career as a member of the Nakamura Jakuemon IV family under the acting name, Nakamura Kyozo, which was newly given by his master. Ever since, he has continued working as a professional Kabuki actor through monthly performances in Kabuki-za (Tokyo), National Theatre (Tokyo), Osaka Shochiku-za, Minami-za (Kyoto), Misono-za (Nagoya), Hakata-za (Fukuoka) etc., as well as other domestic tours of Kabuki performances throughout Japan. He also participates in lecture and performance tours of kabuki in other regions around the world such as Europe, North America, Oceania, and South East Asia.
In 1994, he was promoted to Nadai (billboard-ranked actor) in Kabuki-za. He has been authorized as a holder of the “Important Intangible Cultural Properties Kabuki.”In addition, he works as a lecturer of Drama Studio at the New National Theatre and part-time lecture of the faculty of Education at Chiba University.


Kyozo Nakamura: kabuki actor
Matsugoro Onoe: kabuki actor
Bungoro Tobaya: nagauta
(classical Japanese vocal ensemble)
Gokouji Kineya: nagauta
Syoen Kineya: shamisen
Rokukimiro Kineya: shamisen
Tasaroku Mochizuki, taiko (Japanese drum)
Seitaro Mochizuki, taiko
Tashu Mochizuki, taiko
Takinosuke Mochizuki, fue (Japanese flute)


Yuko Iguchi: stage director
Naoki Yabuta: prop master
Yuichi Udagawa: wig master
Akiko Kubo: costumer
Masao Nakano: producer

[Contact Us]

Europe, Middle East and Africa Section, Arts and Culture Dept., The Japan Foundation
Person in charge: Naohisa Abe
Tel. 03-5369-6063 Fax. 03-5369-6038 E-mail

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