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Ichikawa Danjūrō

The most illustrious of the major acting family lines in the kabuki tradition identified with the Edo (now Tokyo) region. Danjūrō I (1660-1704) created the aragoto (rough business) style of acting. He also wrote plays under the pen name Mimasuya Hyōgo. His son Danjūrō II (1688-1758) firmly established the prestige of the Ichikawa name. Danjūrō  V (1741-1806) acted skillfully in both male and female roles. Danjūrō  VII (1791-1859) compiled the kabuki Jūhachiban ("18 kabuki plays"), which he established as the special repertory of the Ichikawa family. Danjūrō  XII (real name Horikoshi Natsuo; b 1946) assumed the name in April 1985. (adapted from Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia. Tokyo: Kodansha, 1993)

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