October 10, 2014/ 7:30 PM - 8:30 PM

David Henry Hwang Theater East West Players Los Angeles CA

One-Man Kabuki Storyteller Kunitoshi Kineya U.S. Tour

Kunitoshi Kineya, a one-of-a-kind Nagauta shamisen player, will come to the US in October for a US tour.

Nagauta, which literally means “long song” in Japanese, is a classical style of Japanese music which traditionally accompanies Kabuki Theater. Kunitoshi specializes in performing pieces from the Nagauta repertoire on the shamisen, a three-stringed fretless lute.

His concert will consist of two parts: the first will be a shamisen demonstration in which he will explain the significance of Nagauta music.  In the second part, he will perform “Kurozuka”, a classic Kabuki piece.

Kunitoshi Kineya has been active for nearly 40 years performing and composing pieces on the shamisen, a traditional Japanese instrument. He began playing Nagauta shamisen when he was just eighteen years old, after being captivated by its fascinating tone and rich history. It was not long before he decided he would become a professional player and performer. He has performed with leading Kabuki actors including Tamasaburo Bando among many others, and has also composed stage music for not only Kabuki Theater groups, but for original theater plays of his as well.  As a solo performer, Kunitoshi has made it his mission to inspire an appreciation for Nagauta in those who may not know about or have any particular interest in the art form. Kunitoshi accomplishes this by putting an emphasis on the fun aspects of Nagauta and by using his enthusiasm on stage to engage younger audience members in this traditional music. Audiences everywhere are mesmerized by his immense talent and engaging stage presence. sha

Japan Foundation323.761.7510


Sponsor(s): , Japan Foundation & The Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles