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Noh: The Rolls of Silk
From: Illustrations of Noh at the Imperial Court
Noh:The Rolls of Silk

After the death of Zeami, those who were active in the Noh world included his nephew On'ami (?|1467) and his son-in-law, Konparu Zenchiku (1405|70?).

On'ami seems to have even surpassed Zeami in terms of technique, and he received the support of the Ashikaga shoguns Yoshinori (1394|1441) and Yoshimasa (1436|90), and shared the Noh world with Zenchiku, who was active as a playwright and theoretician.

Both On'ami and Zenchiku died during the time of the Onin Rebellion (1468|78), which weakened the power of the shogunate and caused many temples and shrines to decline, all of which had a powerful shock upon Noh. In those troubled times, On'ami's son, Kanze Nobumitsu (1435|1516), and his son, Kanze Nagatoshi (1488|1541), together with Zenchiku's grandson, Zenpo (1454|1520), created multi-faceted Noh plays that were visually rich in gaudy action, and that had many characters on stage together, discovering a way out of their difficulties by gaining the support of the general public.

At the same time, Kyogen took on an improvisational character, gaining laughter through the lines and actions on the stage, and there were no established scripts, simply rough outlines of the plots. However, through a patternization and refinement of the strong characters who lived in such a topsy-turvy age, the various familiar elements of Kyogen today were born, and the art advanced through the consolidation of the actors.

The History of Noh & Kyogen.1
The History of Noh & Kyogen.2
The History of Noh & Kyogen.3
The History of Noh & Kyogen.4
The History of Noh & Kyogen.5
The History of Noh & Kyogen.6
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