Osaka Unique Comic Storytelling
Numerous Rakugo theaters in Dotombori and Tenma disappeared over time. But the beacon of Kamigata Rakugo is not extinguished yet. Rakugo performers polish their art and expand the circle of their fans in temples, shrines and small halls in Osaka city. This year, long awaited permanent Rakugo theater "Temma Tenjin Hanjotei" opened right near Osaka Temmangu shrine in the autumn of 2006. Expand our imagination by following the locations that appear in Kamigata Rakugo and appreciate the live shows in the intimate theater.
|START: Ebisucho Sta. of Subway Sakaisuji Line|
|1.||1 min walk||Temma market and "Senryo Orange"|
|2.||5 min walk||The Osaka Museum of Housing and Living|
|3.||3 min walk from JR Osaka Station & Subway Tanimachi Line Tanimachi 9 chome Station|
|4.||3 min walk from Subway Tanimachi Line Tanimachi 9 chome Station|
|5.||4 min walk from Subway Tanimachi Line Shitennoji Yuhigaoka Station|
|6.||12 min by Subway Sennichimae Line Nipponbashi|
|7.||7 min walk|
1. Temma market and "Senryo Orange"
First, go to Temma, an indispensable place to talk about Kamigata Rakugo. This is because Temma Tenjin Hanjotei, the long awaited permanent theater for Rakugo opened very near the north gate of Osaka Tenmangu Shrine in the fall of 2006. The beacon of laughter has finally been revived in close proximity to Tenjin-san. By the way, let us introduce the stage of a Rakugo in the appropriate environs of Temma. In the Edo era, Osaka was called the "kitchen of the world". 3 big markets consisting of a rice market in Dojima, a fish market in Zakoba, and a fresh produce market in Temma were enjoying good business. In the Rakugo "Senryo Orange", the Red market of Temma, straight south from Temma Tenjin makes an appearance. "Red" refers to fruit as opposed to "Green" for vegetables. In the pre-war era, fruiterers were also called "Red shops". Temma market behind JR Temma Station was rebuilt a few years ago. It is now a part of a high rise building, and still crowded with shoppers in the neighborhood.
Once upon a time during a hot summer, a young master of a big shop fell sick. When asked the cause, he responded "I want to eat a round, shiny, tender orange!" The amazed head clerk went here and there to look for one, but it was out of season and could not find one anywhere. As a last resort, he found one at the orange whole seller at Red market of Temma! But the master of the store says "It will cost you senryo (thousands of dollars)." Well, how does the head clerk manage to...
2. The Osaka Museum of Housing and Living
Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping Street, right near Osaka Temmangu and Temma market is a shopping street 2km in length. Walk to Tenjinbashi-suji 6 chome while watching the shops, and there is a building where the "Osaka Museum of Housing and Living" is located. Inside, the modern town of Osaka from the Edo era to Meiji, Taisho and Showa is displayed in a unique way. Of particular interest is the floor of reproduction of Osaka in the 1830s. Taking up a space of 1,100 m2, it is just like a set of a period drama! There is a draper, a haberdashery store, an imported goods store; go through a small alley to find rows of town houses. Familiar Rakugo characters may appear. A "Town Vaudeville Theater" is held by young performers in the parlor of the pharmacy (irregular).
|Admission||General ￥600, Senior high school and University students ￥300.
* Junior high school students and under, people with disabilities, city residents over 65 years of age admission free (ID required). * Extra fee during the special exhibits.
3. Kouzu Gu Shrine and "Lottery of Kouzu"
Get on Subway Tanimachi Line from Temma environs, get off at Tanimachi 9 chome Station. 5 minutes walk takes you to Kouzu Gu, a shrine connected with Naniwa Kouzu Gu opened by Emperor Nintoku. It is quiet now, and a place for rest for the people in the neighborhood, but lottery tickes were sold here once, and it was thriving with common people wishing for a small piece of good fortune. There is a story in Kouzu Gu.
"Lottery of Kouzu"
The place is an inn in Okawa town, Osaka. There was a man who kept bragging he was a millionaire, but actually he had only a single penny to his name. He bought a lottery ticket with the penny at the request of the innkeeper. Believing he would never win, he promised the innkeeper to share half the profit if he was lucky. The following day, he went to Kouzu Gu. "N-1365, N-1365..." Looking at the winning number, he realizes "Oh my God" I have won!" Well, there the trouble starts... Kouzu Gu appears in the classic Rakugo " Fox of Takakura" and Emperor Sutokuin" in addition to "Lottery of Kouzu". Aiming to be the center of culture as in the olden days, "Kouzu Gu-tei, Kuromon Vaudeville Theater" is held every month on the premises. Newly selected original Rakugo by professional creators "Mogita-tei", "Kotohogi Vaudeville Theater" and "Rakugo group Ichigo" organized by non-professional Rakugo performer groups are regularly held, which are popular among Rakugo fans. A memorial to Master Bunshi Katsura who died in 2005 is on the premises.
|TEL||06-6762-1122 (Registration: 9:00-16:30)|
4. Ikutama Jinja Shrine
Ikutama Jinja is a few minutes walk from Kouzu Gu, commonly called "Ikutamasan" started when Emperor Jimmu came to Osaka from Kyushu and worshipped the gods of the land "Ikushimano kami" and "Tarushimano kami". There is a memorial to Hikohachi Yonezawa, an ancestor of Kamigata Rakugo who performed here. "Hikohachi Festival" is held every September with Kamigata Rakugo performers. Familiar Rakugo artists open stalls, sing, and dance. It is a luxurious fan appreciation day.
5. Isshinji and "Tenjinyama"
Take the Subway Tanimachi Line again from Kouzu Gu and get off at Shitennoji Yuhigaokamae Station. Walk 7 minutes. Isshinji with artistic eye-catching novel design construction and A-Un images was opened in 1185. In the battles in winter and summer of Osaka, it was the headquarters of Ieyasu Tokugawa and it has a long history. It is known by the name of Bone Buddha, Amitabha Buddha made of the bones of the deceased, attracting many worshippers. In the Rakugo "Tenjinyama", skulls make an appearance.
There was a strange man called Gensuke. He said "If people enjoy drinking amid the cherry blossoms, I will drink in the cemetery", and he came to Isshinji of Tenjinyama. He had a drink in front of a grave of a young girl. He picked up a skull nearby and went home. That night, a beautiful girl came to his house and said "Marry me". Hearing this story, his neighbor Yasubei went to Isshinji because he wanted a wife, too...
6. Nipponbashi and "Vengeance at the inn"
It is about time to wrap up. From Isshinji, take Subway Tanimachi Line, transfer to Sennichimae Line to arrive at Nipponbashi. Now appliance shops, Kuromon market, and National Bunraku Theater are nearby, and diverse and various people pass by. This place was the starting point of journeys in the Edo era. Inns lined both sides of the street and strangers met together. There is a story.
"Vengeance at the inn"
One samurai requested a quiet room at an inn in Nipponbashi, Osaka, but the 3 people who came in later from Hyogo called in geisha and became very noisy. They had a whale of a time with sumo talk, erotic talk, etc. One of the three, Genbei, boastfully told a story of another man as if it were his own, "I committed adultery with the wife of a samurai, Hikokuro Koyanagi in Takatsuki 8 years ago. It was I who killed her and her brother-in-law and escaped with all the money." Oh, no! The samurai in the next room called out, "I am he, one and the same, Hikokuro Koyanagi. On the morrow, I shall sever your heads, all three of you at Nipponbashi!" "Heaven help us!"
7. TORII HALL
First of every month is TORII Vaudeville Theater day! How happy for the live Rakugo and music. A tour of the places connected with Rakugo should end at a Rakugo theater. TORII Vaudeville Theater opens on the first of every month at TORII HALL since 1991, 7 minutes walk from Nipponbashi. Planned by Kobeicho Katsura, the performance is filled with variety, young and famous names mixed, and worth listening to a lot. It celebrated its 15th birthday not long ago. A classic performing art of Osaka, it is nurtured steadily in the middle of a building in Minami. It is a small space with a capacity of only 100. Access to live Rakugo and music without microphone is the real joy. To working women and men who are tired, beginners of Rakugo. Let's laugh, and laugh, to rid ourselves of stress!