Kabuki Actor Ichikawa Eno II Dies at 83

Society Culture

Tokyo, Sept. 16 (Jiji Press)--Kabuki actor Ichikawa Eno II, the inventor of modern-style "super kabuki," died of arrhythmia in Tokyo on Wednesday. He was 83.

A native of Tokyo, Eno, whose real name was Masahiko Kinoshi, was popular for his signature techniques such as "chunori" midair stunt and "hayagawari," or quickly changing costumes, when he played as Ichikawa Ennosuke III.

The first son of kabuki actor Ichikawa Danshiro III, Eno debuted at the age of 7 in 1947 under the stage name of Ichikawa Danko III. He assumed Ichikawa Ennosuke III in May 1963.

In 1968, Eno performed chunori in a role as Kitsune Tadanobu in "Yoshitsune Senbon Zakura Kawatsura Hogen Yakata." In 2000, when he carried out the 5,000th chunori performance of flying across the stage and audience, Eno was recognized by the Guinness World Records for "most stage flights performed."

Active on creating new kabuki plays, Eno played in the first performance of "Yamato Takeru," a super kabuki work based on "Kojiki," Japan's oldest existing literary work composed in the eighth century, in 1986. The piece became a smash hit.

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