Message From Onoe Kikugoro VII

I'd like to offer you a warm welcome to the Otowaya website.

Kabuki is a genre of Japanese theatre with a history stretching back four hundred years. The main purpose of this website is to provide an introduction to the history of the house of Onoe Kikugoro and the Kabuki actors who have borne the hereditary stage title Otowaya. Over the long historical period from the birth of Kikugoro I down to the present day, generation after generation of actors in this lineage have carefully handed on the plays and roles bequeathed to them by their forebears.

One of the most important tasks of actors has been to read the mood of the times with the utmost sensitivity and to recreate their stage performances in this light.

There are aficionados of the Kabuki theatre who like to refer to Kabuki actors as 'thoroughbreds', but it might be more apt to refer them to as 'work horses'! The work of a Kabuki actor involves relentless toil, month after month. But it isn't a task that can be hurried. Actors appear on the stage aware that they must advance little by little, step by step.

I hope that this website will provide you with the opportunity to enhance your enjoyment of our stage presentations.

Onoe Kikugoro VII

October 2009