第246回 千代尼忌にて



Yesterday I visited the Shokoji Temple in Ishikawa Prefecture to participate in the 246th anniversary of the death of the poet Chiyo, where I was honored to dance about her life last year.

I was so grateful for the cordial welcome of the temple people this year again, and hearing poems and songs dedicated to Chiyo.



In the midst of the heat, we visited Nisonin Temple in Arashiyama where the 4th Head Master Yuki Yoshimura sensei dedicated a stone monument of a fan when he was designated as a National Treasure in 1986.



The temple monk said that one of old fans of Yuki sensei is preserved here.



「時維 昭和六十一年 雄輝家元 文部大臣より無形文化財保持者の認定を受く 御殿舞の流れを汲んで山ノ内ふくが京都麩屋町二條上ル町で山ノ内流を建てたのが弘化二年である  門弟が小ふくと成り更にその門弟のふじがその後を受けたが三代目といわないで吉村流をとなえて初代となった 本拠を大阪に移し南地の師匠となりあしべ踊の振付師として活躍して定着した その没後二代目をゆう さらに三代目を雄光がついだが 昭和三十六年六月一日逝去後 門弟雄輝が四世を襲つた 昭和三十七年五月三十日のことである 家名は代々世襲でなく芸をもって継ぐという芸道最高の理念によって継承されているところに吉村流の特質を見ることが出来る

昭和四十七年三月 施主 四世家元 吉村雄輝 吉村流名取一同 賛助 門弟一同」

Translation of the sentences carved on the backside of the monument says:

“Head Master Yuki was designated as a holder of Intangible Cultural Property in 1986.

It was in 1846 that Fuku Yamanouchi started the dance school of Yamanouchi that was descended from dances that was long taught and performed in the Kyoto Imperial Palace, in Fuya-machi in Kyoto. Her disciple Kofuku succeeded as the second, then Kofuku’s disciple Fuji the next. However Fuji started the school of Yoshimura instead of calling herself the third. She moved to Osaka to be a dance teacher of maiko and geiko in the area of Nanchi and prospered as a choreographer of Ashibe Dance, a known performance by maiko and geiko of that area.

After Fuji’s death her desciple Yu inherited the second, then Yuko the third. Yuko passed away on June 1 in 1961. Yuki then inherited the fourth on May 30, 1962. It is Yoshimura school’s principle that the head masters should be inherited not by blood but by Gei or the art of dance.

March 1972

Dedicated by the 4th Head Master Yuki Yoshimura and all Natori, helped by all the disciples.”



After the visit, I am with my husband who came along in the midst of the heat.





Set two branches of autumn bell flowers as I was looking for a cool color in the season getting hotter and hotter.



Looking at an old video of the 4th head master Yuki Yoshimura, I was mesmerized to find how his posters look alike with the above ukiyoe painting.



Today’s flowers are lilies and eucalyptus from a store and the last hydrangeas of this year from the garden.



Classes are restarting from this June.



Flowers in the alcove are dokudami and yukinoshita picked up from the garden this morning.





Drove to Nara, after a long period of quarantine, as three prefectures including Kyoto and Osaka were finally relieved of emergency claim this week.
Shorinji Temple, which is known for the 11 faced Kannon statue and a view of beautiful Mt. Miwa, was in the old time when Buddhism and Shintoism were not separated part of the Tanzan Shrine that is standing surrounded by Mt. Tonomine.
One building of Tanzan Shrine has been a location of dance and noh play and even Zeami, the founder of the noh was raised and protected by this shrine.

I prayed for improvement in my dance to all the deities.



The season is now welcoming the pleasant winds of May.


At first I put off the classes until May 6th. However as the Emergency Claim by the government was extended and also considering my students’ health and safety, I have put off the classes until the end of this month.


I put the fan of Aoi Festival that I was honored to be gifted by the Shimogamo Shrine at the time of the dance dedication to pray and hope for the health of all.





下は、1995年9月15日に東京のNHKホールにおいて、リッカルド・ムーティさんが指揮をされたミラノ・スカラ座管弦楽団来日公演による映像ですが、「主よ 永遠の安息を彼らに与え 永遠の光で彼らを照らしてください」という言葉からはじまるヴェルディの「レクイエム」が、多くの人の希望の灯となったら、と思います。

Presently many theaters in the world are being closed due to the virus situation, same as dance performances of Kamigata-mai.

However, there was an announcement that the Scala Theater in Milan is going to reopen with Requiem by Verdi this September.

I humbly pray that the virus is dispelled and the people in the theater world can start working again.

Below is the video of Requiem by the orchestra of the Scala conducted by Riccardo Muti in 1995 in Tokyo. I simply hope that the Requiem that starts with “Grant them eternal rest, O Lord; and may perpetual light shine upon them” will be a light of healing and hope for the world and for the people.



Stay home




Because of the virus situation, many businesses are being closed, same as my classes which are off until the end of the Golden Week Holiday vacation.

Performances are also being cancelled or postponed, so I stay home much of my time.

Even this kind of year had the deutzia (Himeutsugi in Japanese, literally meaning “Princess Flower of April”) in my garden blossoming.



While spending my time mostly cleaning and putting things in order, I found my old shamisen.





I haven’t practiced shamisen for a long while, but as I suddenly had much time to spare, I started practicing…

The piece that I am presently working on is called “The Rhythm of Tea” or Cha-ondo. It is the piece that in the school of Yoshimura you have to master in order to be certified as “Natori”, a stage-name holder.

The interpretation may be different depending on your school. I would like to write down here the one that I have learned.


地唄 茶音頭

世の中にすぐれて花は吉野山 紅葉は龍田 茶は宇治の 都の辰巳

それよりも 廓は都の未申 数寄とは 誰が名に立てし 濃茶の色の深緑

松の位にくらべては 囲といふも低けれど 情けは同じ床飾り

飾らぬ胸の裏表 袱紗さばきの心から 聞けば思惑違い棚

逢ふてどうして香箱の 柄杓の竹は直ぐなれど そちは茶杓の曲み文字

憂さを晴らしの初昔 昔噺の爺婆となるまで 釜の中冷めず

縁はくさりの末長く 千代萬代へ





The Rhythm of Tea

In the world, what is especially beautiful is the cherry blossoms on Yoshino mountain, maple leaves on Tatsuta mountain, and the tea on Uji mountain, which is at the southeast side of the capital.

Yet more important is .. Shimabara which is the red-light district that you like is at the southwest side of the capital, by the way, who started that rumor that I like you?

Matcha tea is deep green, compared with the color of pine (pine is the highest rank of Shimabara courtesans), the frame of a fire pit for tea may be very humble. Yet isn’t the emotion the same when you love somebody?

With my austere emotion, I handle the Fukusa (cloth to wipe tea cups) from my heart.

Seeing you, I noticed that although the water scoop is straight, your heart is bent like the tea scoop.


My sadness is dispelled. I wish that the iron pot will be hot and boiling, until you and I become like an old man and woman in the fairy tale.

I pray that our relationship continues long and eternal like a chain.







The performance that was scheduled on April 18 at SYD Hall in Yoyogi, Tokyo is cancelled. Also the performance to commemorate the succession of the 7th Head Master of the school of Yoshimura is postponed till May 1, 2021. The performance scheduled to be held by the Nihon Buyo Association in August is postponed too.

Various performances are either postponed or cancelled.

I feel sorry about that but I would like to use this time to study new choreographs and scores at home.