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83 6 • Rō-Giō (Giō at the Prison)| Michael Watson Introduction Rō-Giō 籠祇王 (Giō at the Prison) is a genzai play in two acts. It formerly was part of the Kita school repertoire, but it is no longer performed. The playwright is unknown. The shite of Rō-Giō is Giō, the famous shirabyōshi 白拍子 dancer from Heike monogatari, but little in the play is derived from the source text. Rō-Giō bears close structural and thematic resemblance to Morihisa, also translated in this volume: it opens with a michiyuki 道行 (travel song), has a dance as its visual center, and turns on a miraculous last-minute reprieve granted by the deity Kannon. The order of the dance and reprieve are reversed from Morihisa, creating a somewhat more suspenseful climax. Rō-Giō opens with Giō, and her attendant traveling from the capital to Kogawa, in Kii province, where Giō’s father has been imprisoned. They are met by a man from Kowaka who has been charged with guarding Giō’s father. Giō is at first unaware of the nature of her father’s crime. The guard agrees to let her meet with her father in exchange for a dance: Giō’s fame as a shirabyōshi has reached even this remote village. Giō is united with her father and learns of his crime: while he himself was serving as a jailer, he freed an innocent man, an act Giō praises. The two lament their imminent parting, and the guard intervenes to request that Giō dances. Although weighed by her sorrows, she is prodded into performing by her father. She dances, and then the execution is to take place. Miraculously, however, the sword cannot hit its mark—it has been shattered, we are told, by Kannon’s divine intervention to protect the innocent. Oyler_Like Clouds_TXT_8.5X11_NXP.pdf Tuesday, Apr 08 2014 15:38 84 6 | WATSON We can presume that part of the visual pleasure of this play lies largely in Giō’s dance; combined with the drama in the last-minute reprieve involving the popular salvific deity Kannon, Rō-Giō was most likely quite effective in performance. Moreover, the juxtaposed themes of freedom and captivity, captor and captive, and parent and child suggest a rich complexity of emotional entanglements and their moral consequences that give unusual complexity to this piece. Oyler_Like Clouds_TXT_8.5X11_NXP.pdf Tuesday, Apr 08 2014 15:38 Rō-Giō (Giō at the Prison) | Translation 85 Rō-Giō (Giō at the Prison)| Translated by Michael Watson Fourth-category genzai nō in two acts. Formerly performed by the Kita school. Time: Third Month, year unknown Place: Kogawa in Kii province1 Author: Unknown shite Giō tomo Attendant tsure Giō’s Father waki Man from Kogawa2 Man from Kogawa I am so-and-so from Kogawa in Kishū. Now then, I had an argument with a certain person from the neighboring village. A great number of people were captured and many trophies taken. One of the prisoners who was still young was put under the guard of a local man. Because he let the prisoner escape last night, this guard has himself been made prisoner. I intend now to make sure that Rō-Giō 籠祇王. This translation is based on Haga Yaichi and Sasaki Nobutsuna, eds., Kōchū yōkyoku sōsho, vol. 3 (Hakubunkan, 1915; reprint edition, Rinsen shoten, 1987), 593–99. The divisions between prose and sung passages follow a Kita 喜多 school utaibon 謡本 libretto kindly provided to me by Richard Emmert. Kita Rokuheita, ed., Rō-Giō (Wanya shoten, 1923). 1. The information concerning play category, time, and place follows Kita, RōGi ō, n.p. The province of Kii 紀伊, referred to in the text as Ki 紀, Kishū 紀州 or Ki no kuni 紀の国, is now Wakayama prefecture. Kogawa 粉河 is located in the modern city of Kinokawa 紀の川, and is known for its ancient Tendai temple, Kogawa-dera 粉川寺, third in the series of thirty-three Kannon temples visited by pilgrims on the ancient route known as Saigoku sanjūsansho Kannon junrei 西 国三十三所観音巡礼. 2. In Kita school tradition, Giō wears a young woman’s mask (ko-omote), a brocaded outer robe (karaori) over a kimono (haku), and hat (Shizuka eboshi). She holds a black fan and has a sutra tucked in her robe. Her father wears a mizugoromo cloak and a plain under-kimono (muchi nōshime) and carries a crystal rosary (juzu). Kita, Rō-Giō, n.p. Oyler_Like Clouds_TXT_8.5X11_NXP.pdf Tuesday, Apr 08 2014 15:38 86 6 | WATSON he is strictly guarded. Is anyone there? Guard...


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