It was the 8th year of Keicho (1603) when Iyeyasu Tokugawa was ordained Shogun, the highest General, and laid the cornerstone of the long Tokugawa Shogunate. It was also the same year when Okuni from Izumo made her first performance in public, mimicking the style of a kabuki-mono, at Kitano-Tenjin Shrine in Kyoto, which was called kabuki-odori and was a real start of the long histry of kabuki in Japan. Okuni\u27s kabuki-odori consisted of vivacious dancing and gay songs with amusing stories, the features found in later kabuki. She acted an outlaw who boasted of being a bandid wearing a hilarious costume and playing aroud with teahouse girls. Such sexual transformation was a theatrical expression of eroticism. By mimicking a kabuki-mono, an anti-social gengster, she expressed the feeling of populace who were obliged to survive through the change from the Wartime of Nobunaga and Hideyoshi to the Peacetime of lyeyasu. Her audience rightly sensed the coming of a new theater, completely different from the traditional noh plays of kyogen comic plays, and gave a big applause to each performance of Okuni, However, the more popular kabuki became, the stricter the Tokugawa government became. In spite of the fact that they meddled into kabuki performance one way and anather, kabuki tactfully outlived their oppression and survived to be a more powerful theatrical existance. The present paper is a part of a coming volume, Kabuki no Seishin (The Spirit of Kabuki), which I am now writing

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