Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien nav lang search
Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien
Event Series
October 20, 2021

DIJ lecture on female rakugo performers on Tokyo’s stages

Screenshot suika rakugo

When talking about traditional Japanese stage-arts, many think of men in kimono. In most stage arts, to this day, female performers are either not trained at all or trained but not accepted to perform in their respective schools’ main stages. Today, about 5% of Tokyo’s rakugo performers are female and most enjoy a big fan following. However, the portfolio of rakugo stories has been created by men for mostly male audiences. This presentation gives an historic overview of the development of the involvement of female performers on Tokyo’s yose stages and discusses the different approaches they take on-stage, particularly looking into issues such as modification of stories, voice, tone, appearance and stage persona. This session of the DIJ History and Humanities Study Group is part of the DIJ Gender and Sexuality in East Asia Lecture Series. Details and registration here

Sarah Stark, University of Ghent