1. Bibliographical and philological research on materials held by the Noh Theatre Research Institute
Leaders: KOBAYASHI Kenji and MIYAMOTO Keizō
Reports on the activities of research projects for 2018
The project marked the end of six years with the following activities.
･ A research meeting on “The Potential for Research on Noh Materials” (October 21) introduced a wide range of new approaches to noh studies, from Japanese linguistics, Buddhist studies, history, to the bibliographical study of woodblock editions that transcend traditional forms of noh research. Presentations were made by MIYAMOTO Keizō, OCHIAI Hiroshi, TAKAHASHI Yūsuke, and TOYOSHIMA Masayuki. See the report (p. 2). The work led by Toyoshima on the philological study of noh transmissions resulted in a publication by TAKEMURA Asuka, UNO Nagomi, and IKEDA Kumi, “The chart of fifty sounds in noh transmissions” (Nihongo no kenkyū, vol. 14, no. 4).
･ Full support was given to a research project led by NIIMI Minoru at Musashino Arts University analyzing typographic design, book creation, and cover design of Kōetsu noh libretti (early Edo period) from the perspective of visual arts. Help was given in planning and co-sponsoring the exhibition on Japanese-style books printed in the Japanese language held in November and December. MIYAMOTO Keizō participated in a lecture meeting, speaking on the topic of “Kōetsu noh libretti in the history of noh printing” (Nov. 4).
･ Work continued from 2017 on a catalogue of the noh-related materials from the former collection of the Yamazaki family of Kōryū school shoulder drum performers. Originally the catalogue was due to be published in 2019, but required more time than expected. It will be published as soon as possible.
Reports on the activities of research projects for 2017
The interdisciplinary study of noh materials has many kinds of hidden potential. Different attempts to mine that potential are examplified by the following studies carried out this year:
KOBAYASHI Chigusa, “The versatility of medieval noh recitation and the reconstruction of the Christian printing of Extracts from the Taiheki: The Kumawakamaru section of Extracts from the Taiheki and the noh play Danpū.ʼʼ How were the Extracts from the Taiheki originally read aloud? This was an attempt to reconstruct the recitation style of Extracts from the Taiheki printed on the press of the Christian missionaries. The reconstruction was carried out with reference to the intonation, pauses, and other features of noh recitation. A reconstructed performance was recited by FUKUŌ Kazuyuki, waki of the Fukuō school.
“Disseminating information about Noh studies via the Web, present and future: From digital resource archives to new approaches to content creationʼʼ (Symposium). This was an introduction to new initiatives of the National Institute of Japanese Literature, Ritsumeikan University Art Research Center, and JPARC. We held a wide-ranging discussion about the significance, potential, and future prospects of using the web.
Research into the noh materials formerly of the Kōryū kotsuzumi Yamazaki household. TAKAKUWA Izumi and NAKATSUKA Yukiko are leading an investigation into the collection of kotsuzumi and ōtsuzumi drums, noh libretti, and herititary documents passed down in the Kōryū kotsuzumi Yamazaki school that flourished in the Edo period. More than two hundred noh-related items will be included in the catalogue. The data was collected in the 2015 project “Drums brought back to life’’ (yomigaeru kodō), see Journal, vol. 3. The catalogue is expected to be published in 2018.
Reports on the activities of research projects for 2016
This year the following research projects were conducted with the goals of reprinting and publishing literature to support Noh theater research and to carry out interdisciplinary studies based on this literature.
・ A workshop titled “Noh treatises from the perspective of Japanese linguistics” was held in October. Prof. TOYOSHIMA Masayuki of Sophia University served as the commentator. Scholars from Kanazawa University, Japan Women’s University, Kyoto Prefectural University, Shinshu University and Ochanomizu University discussed the possibility of conducting research utilizing database of Noh treatises, the relationship between description of vocal description in old utai treatises and current utai singing styles.
・ KOBAYASHI Chigusa (ex-professor of Tokai University) conducted a workshop “Ōkura-ryū script Akutarō in the late Edo period and its vocal reproduction.” YAMAMOTO Norishige and Norihide, Ōkura-ryū kyogen performers, performed Akutarō based on the script stored at the Seijo University Library.
・ A large 380-page report of studies of the literature of modern Noh history entitled Kindainihon to Nōgaku (Modern Japan and Noh) was published. In addition to reports of a seminar held in FY2013, new contributions from Associate Professor ITŌ Maki of Meiji University and Deputy Director Johng Wan, SUH of the Institute of Japanese Studies at Hallym University were added.
Reports on the activities of research projects for 2015
The major aims of this project are to publish typographical reprints of basic sources for Noh theatre research, and promote interdisciplinary research based on them. This year we published two collections of typographical reprints (related to Ōkura Torakiyo and Komparu Yasuzumi). A December research meeting on early Edo-period utaibon attracted the attention of researchers in the field of Noh theatre research, the history of publishing, medieval literature, and philology. We digitalized more than twenty valuable historical sources and added them to the Institute’s digital archives. A symposium on early-Edo period utaibon, with an exhibition, is being planned for next year with the cooperation of Keiō University’ Institute of Oriental Classics (Shidō Bunko). Next year we will publish separate volumes on the Noh Theatre Seminar of 2013 on Noh theatre in the Meiji era, and the 2014 symposium and exhibition of materials transmitted by the Komparu family.
Into the second year of our activities
In addition to continuing the comprehensive survey of materials transmitted by the Komparu family, we held a research meeting on early utaibon, and continued work towards the production of typographical reprints of Noh-related materials by Komparu Yasuzumi and treatises handed down in the Kyogen Ōkura family. A database of the Institute’s Hannyakutsu Bunko and other documents has been made public at the following address: http://nohken-komparu.hosei.ac.jp/. A symposium and exhibition of the Komparu family materials is planned for September.