A Treasured Art
Japanese theater also known as Kabuki is an ancient form of Japanese art. It was created early in the 1600's by a shrine maiden, Okuni, who brought her unique,beautiful,and expressive dance style to the ancient capital of Japan, Kyoto, and for the next 3 centuries it evolved into one of the most respected and the most beautiful forms of theater.
Even though Kabuki was created by a woman, since the very beginning all parts have been played by men. Men who act out the roles of women are called “onnagata” meaning female role specialists. Ichimura Manjiro, an infamous actor who actively participates in Kabuki is an “onnagata”.Onnagatas all wear elaborate costumes including padding to make them look more like women.They also have magnificent wigs in many complicated styles along with complete makeup as a woman would wear.After dressing for their part onnagatas are unrecognizable from their original persona.The onnagatas can not have facial hair of any sort and must have trimmed eyebrows as a woman must be well groomed.
Mostly Kabuki plays and dances are relatively based on past centuries it can be about just about anything ranging from important historical events or the life of people in the Edo period (1600-1868). For every play,the original sets, music, costumes and the roles themselves all help to create the highly enjoyable experience of going to Kabuki theater.
Kabuki theater is musical theater; it's filled with dance, various oriental music based mostly on percussion. There are two instrumental groups on the kabuki stage. How its set up usually is that on the left of the stage is a small room with a narrow window, this is called akuromisu; inside this room sit the players who play the background music called the geza. But on the right side of the stage is a platform, the "choba yuka" on which the tayu (the narrator)and the onstage music group(debayashi). This…