Fusion of Traditional and Modern : GINZA KABUKIZA, Remarking the New History
“Kabuki” is a traditional performing arts that represents Japan. What do you imagine when hearing the word Kabuki? Many people might imagine people with white makeup performing. Kabuki is a worldwide known art that has a history of 400 years from its appearance.
Even though it is a well known performing art, Kabuki’s true meaning and essence are less known to people; Japanese people even! People these days have less opportunity to learn about Kabuki. So, if we actually go to the “Ginza Kabukiza”, where it produced famous stages of Kabuki and supported the Kabuki, it might change our impression toward Kabuki and more!!
Throughout the four rebuilding work, in 2013, the new Kabukiza opened, and it is now called the “GINZA KABUKIZA”, where it has both the Kabukiza and the Kabukiza Tower (an office tower). The spot is in alphabet letters to describe the Kabuki to spread outside Japan, and to become one of the landmark that helped Japanese culture getting around the world. The NEW Kabukiza is not just any kind of theater contained building, but also an experiencing type entertainment sight-seeing place. To unlock the secrets of Kabuki, Tina Tamashiro went there.
First, Tina climbs up the stairs called the “Goemon Kaidan” by looking at the scenery that she enjoyed. She expressed the scenery saying “What an amazing view, what an amazing view”, which is a famous line that Ishikawa Goemon says in his play. If you find a flipped “Hōō Maru”, a troupe mark of Kabukiza, on the big roof tile, when going up the stairs, you will get strong good luck!
Then we came to the Kabukiza Gallery. The first thing that came into Tina’s eyes is the horse that is used in the actual play. Inside the horse’s feet, two actors get inside to play the horse. Tina rode on the horse that is way bigger than her. Please be careful when going up and down when riding!
Next, she experienced the ship and the Japanese palanquin.
At the Kobikicho Hall inside the Kabukiza gallery, there is a “Hanamichi” which is an extensive stage of the main stage. Tina walked the Hanamichi holding an umbrella just like a Kabuki actor.
Also, the famous Kabuki play called “Terakoya” is reproduced, and visitors are able to go up on that stage. The exact instruments used in the play are opened for the visitors, and backstage of the Kabuki play is showed on the monitor. You can experience Kabuki world without going inside the theater.
Finally, we went to the Kobikicho Plaza, where it sells goods and souvenirs only here at the Kabukiza basement 2nd floor.
By experiencing these activities, you can find out Kabuki in a different perspective other than just seeing it. Go visit the Kabukiza to check out the new and fun Kabuki world!
Photo by kobadog
Translated by Marina Abe
Address : Ginza 4-12-15, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
Nearest Station : Higashi-Ginza
TEL : 03-3545-6800
URL : http://www.kabuki-bito.jp/eng/contents/theatre/kabukiza.html