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Brandon: Kabuki Plays on Stage V4

Brandon: Kabuki Plays on Stage V4

University of Hawaii Press

ISBN: 9780824825744

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The twelve plays translated in the fourth and final voume of this monumental series cover the remarkable Meiji period, which followed the restoration of the emperor as the leader of Japan. They reflect the years in which reform-minded leaders struggled to help Japan catch up with the West. Dramatists no less than others sought ways to bring their traditional art into the modern world and international respectability to the national stage. Included are kabuki dance plays that strive to resemble no and kyogen; historical dramas that abandon the-atrical fantasy and opt for accurate reproduction of ancient manners; domestic dramas featuring colorful heroes and heroines; pieces that introduce faddish Western properties and behavior; and a play that bridges the gap between the conventions of classical kabuki, Shakespeare, and modern psychological drama. Dominating the era are the works of Kawatake Mokuami, the last great kabuki playwright, while the dramaturgy of literary scholar Tsubouchi Shoyo brings kabuki into the twentieth century.
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