Kabuki Review by Sekidobashi Sakura
At the Villa of Kinugawa Village
January 2004 in Kabukiza Theater
★story ★English-top ★Japanese-top
'Kamakura Sandaiki' was written by Chikamatsu Hanji, and it was first performed in 1781. It has 10-act, and this scene 'at the villa of Kunugawa village' is its 7th act.
Kabuki has many princesses. They are called 'aka-hime/red princess', because they wear red furisode (a long-sleeved kimono) ordinarily. Also this play 'Kamakura Sandaiki' isn't an exception. Tokihime appears on the stage wearing a red long sleeved kimono beautifully Tokihime is one of the big three princesses of Kabuki, and the others are Yaegakihime and Yukihime. They are very difficult to perform. Although they are beautiful of course, the serious terrible tragedy is waiting for them.
Miuranosuke who is a hero of this drama is fighting against Hojo Tokimasa, and Tokihime is a daughter of Tokimasa. Tokihime just loves Miuranosuke, so that she came to the villa of his mother Nagato in order to take care of Nagato who has a serious illness. But Miuranosuke makes use of her love in order to achieve his ambition. He said Tokihime to kill her father. It is taboo to kill a parent anytime anywhere. But she wouldn't be a parent murderer, if she killed herself just after she killed her father. Miuranosuke demanded to Tokihime to do suicide terrorism because of her love. I have never seen such a horrible lover except Miuranosuke. As the result, Tokihime accepts his terrible order.
In 'Imoseyama Onna Teikin', Tachibanahime stole a treasure sword from her brother because of her lover, Tankai. In 'Kiichi-hogen Sanryaku-no-maki', Minazuruhime helped stealing a treasure book because of her lover, Ushiwakamaru. Both of Tankai and Ushiwakamaru don't hesitate to decide to kill their lovers, when they know that their lovers noticed their ambitions. But they didn't kill their lovers, because princesses had a thing to betray, for example a treasure sword or a treasure book. Tokihime didn't have any treasure, so that she had to give her life to Miuranosuke as suicide terrorism. If a daughter committed suicide, it would be the worst betrayal for her father. And she even intends to kill her father before she commits suicide.
Kabuki has shown Japanese princesses' tragedies like that. Young girls always think love, but it doesn't expand to the social love or the worldwide love. However, is it real? That seems a useful thought for males who have ambitions, and they try to make use of it. If Tokihime didn't think that Miuranosuke was the only one lover of her, she wouldn't have accepted his unreasonable request.
Anytime love demands a tragedy to a person who loves more than the other. And love doesn't always continue for a long time. Even if you lost love, the new love would come to you sooner or later. Please wait to think of it so seriously. I don't intend to say to become crafty or selfish. I would like young girls to know that love isn't a matter between a man and a woman only. Love the minority, love the poor, love the handicapped persons, love the children, love all people in the world, and love the Earth. I have no idea if young girls hear it, though. (2004,1,5)
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