ジャポニスム2018|Japonismes 2018


photo by Shinji, AOKI

  • Performing Arts
  • October 12 - 13, 2018

Bunraku

Bunraku Puppet Theatre, the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage.
Combining three artforms – puppetry, narration and shamisen – to portray unique Japanese senses of emotion.

◇Hidakagawa River
Prince Sakuragi, sought to succeed the Imperial throne, is in hiding, taking on the name “Anchin”. Although Anchin already has a lover, Kiyohime, the daughter of a wealthy local, falls in love with him and chases him when she sees Anchin running to Dojo-ji temple to meet his lover. Her rage is so great that she transforms into a snake and swims across the torrid current of the Hidaka River. This performance perfectly showcases some of the delightful features of Bunraku, including the spectacular transformation of Kiyohime’s face as she turns into a serpent, and the interaction of the narration and the shamisen during the climax.

◇The Miracle at the Tsubosaka Temple
Seeing his wife O-sato sneak out of the house every night, blind man Sawaichi suspects her of infidelity. Surprised to learn of her husband’s suspicions, O-sato confesses that she has been paying nightly visits to the shrine to pray for his eyes to be healed, and that tonight she will have completed the prescribed number of visits. Satisfied, Sawaichi apologizes to his wife, and they go to Tsubosaka Kannon together.
Feeling such shame for causing his wife such distress, Sawaichi throws himself into the valley. At the peak of despair, O-sato follows her husband, aiming to kill herself as well.
Just then, Kannon, the goddess of mercy, appears at the bottom of the valley. Kannon praises O-sato’s devotion, and as the strength of their marital love brings them back to life, Sawaichi’s eyes are healed. Waking, they are overjoyed and express their gratitude to Kannon.
This Bunraku piece, something of an anomaly for its happy ending, has been well received in many countries around the world. The combination of the optimistic storyline and the musicality of this gidaiyu-style act makes it a true gem.

・Period:
 October 12 – 13, 2018
・Venue:
 Cité de la musique -Philharmonie de Paris
・Organized by:
 The Japan Foundation, Cité de la musique -Philharmonie de Paris
・In cooperation with:
 KAJIMOTO, BUNRAKU KYOKAI (Bunraku Association)
・In conjunction with:
 Narrator Chitose-dayu TAKEMOTO
 Shamisen Tomisuke TOYOZAWA
 Marionettist Tamao YOSHIDA
 
 
(Updated: 6/15/2018)