The Noh Plays of Japan (Tuttle Classics)
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
The Noh Plays of Japan is the most respected collection of Noh plays in English.
The classic Japanese plays can be read for their great literary merit and also provide the reader with an understanding of a unique theatre art and important insights into the cultural, spiritual and artistic traditions of Japan.
The Noh Plays of Japan, first published in 1921 and justly famous for more than three-quarters of a century, established the Noh play for the Western reader as beautiful literature. It contains Arthur Waley's exquisite translations of nineteen plays and summaries of sixteen more, together with a revealing introductory essay that furnishes the background for a clear understanding and a genuine appreciation of the Noh as a highly significant dramatic form.
Noh plays live on as a magnificent artistic heritage handed down from the high culture of medieval Japan. Among the major types of Japanese drama, the Noh, which is often called the classical theatre of Japan, has had perhaps the greatest attraction for the West. Introduced to Europe and America through the translations of Arthur Waley and Ezra Pound, it found an ardent admirer in William Butler Yeats, who described it as a form of drama "distinguished, indirect, and symbolic" and created plays in its image.
action.) Then he offered the boy a broad-brimmed hat. USHIWAKA And Ushiwaka eagerly grasped it. Today, he said, begins our troublous journey's toil. CHORUS (describing the journey and speaking for USHIWAKA) Past the creek of Awata, to Matsusaka, To the shore of Shinomiya I travel. Down the road to the barrier of Osaka walking behind pack-ponies, How long shall I serve in sadness these hucksters of gold? Here where once the blind harper* lay sorrowing On a cottage-bed, far away
tomorrow, if you like. USHIWAKA Please make it now. I am traveling in a hurry and cannot wait. HATMAKER Very well then; I will make it now. What size do you take? USHIWAKA Please give me an eboshi of the third size, folded to the left. HATMAKER I am afraid I cannot do that. They were worn folded to the left in the time of the Minamotos. But now that the Tairas rule the whole land it would not be possible to wear one folded so. USHIWAKA In spite of that I beg of you
By every jade outrun. VILLAGER (seeing the GIRL standing sadly apart) Poor child, come back again. (She comes back to her father's side.) Listen, Kagekiyo, there is something your daughter wants of you. KAGEKIYO What is it she wants? VILLAGER She tells me that she longs to hear the story of your high deeds at Yashima. Could you not tell us the tale? KAGEKIYO That is a strange thing for a girl to ask. Yet since kind love brought her this long, long way to visit me, I
temple? BOY I have not been able to come because my mother has been ill. TEACHER I had no idea of that. Please tell her at once that I am here. BOY (calling into the house) Mother, the Master is here. MOTHER Ask him to come in. BOY Please come in here. TEACHER It is a long time since I was here. Your son says you have been ill. Are you better now? MOTHER Do not worry about my illness. It is of no consequence. TEACHER I am glad to hear it. I have
word is uttered, but the sharp rap sounds with the thimbled finger as on a box and the stumpy little thud of the bare hands follows, or coincides, from the second drum and both players give a crooning whoop. In some way, which I can't catch, that rhythm surely plays into the measure of the recitation when it comes and into the movements of the actors when they come. You know how people everywhere will persist in justifying the admirable in an art on the ground of the beautiful ideas it presents.