Places, Images, Times & Transformations


("Wait a Minute!"). Kabuki play. A historical play by Ichikawa Danjūrō I (1660-1704) first performed in 1697. One of the simplest, and yet most elemental of kabuki plays. The plot revolves around the evil and power-hungry Kiyohara Takehira, who has contrived to have his enemies disinherited so that they will have no choice but to join forces with him. At a sword-dedication ceremony that will mark his rise to power, he attempts to sway them to his side; and when they refuse, he decides to have them killed. Just then, a booming voice cries "Wait a minute!" from behind the audience; and the hero, Kamakura Gongoro Kagemasa, enters in larger-than-life costume and makeup, quickly establishing justice. Shibaraku scenes are common in ukiyo-e (Japanese woodblock prints) and are quickly recognized by Kagemasa's unusual costume, featuring huge sleeves with the triple-box crest of the Ichikawa family. (from Dan McKee, copyright © 2001-2006 artelino GmbH;

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