Actors bowing to audience


Kabuki actors began each new theatrical year with a kaomise or ôface-showingö ceremony that introduced the actors performing at that theater during the coming season.á This ceremony was usually held in November and featured the actors bowing to the audience.á In addition, actors bowed to and addressed the audience to make various announcements.á These prints illustrate kaomise and important announcements, not merely bows at the conclusions of performances.


Actors: Nakamura Shikan II accompanied by a child actor

Date: 9th month of 1833

Theater: Nakamura

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Sh˘z˘


NOTE: Nakamura Shikan II addressing the audience in anticipation of his departing the Edo stage for Osaka


Actors: Onoe Tamiz˘ II addressing the audience


Date: 1820-1846

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Sh˘z˘


Actors: Ichikawa Ebiz˘ V


Date: c. 1850-1852

Publisher: No seal


I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image


Actors: Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII

Date: 1849

Publisher: Minato-ya Kohei



Actors: Iwai Kumesabur˘ III (left), an unidentified actor of the Ichikawa line (center), and Ichikawa Ebiz˘ V (right) bowing to the audience

Date: c. 1849-1850

Publisher: under a single mountain is identified as Hori Takichi of Yushima in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as ďta-ya Takichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)



Actors: Unidentified actor of the Nakamura line and Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII

Date: 1847-1848 (censors Hama and Kinugasa)

Publisher: Koga-ya Katsugor˘


Actors: Unidentified actor of the Nakamura line Date: 1846-1852

Publisher: Ebi-ya Rinnosuke



Actors: Nakamura Utaemon IV and Seki Sanjűr˘ III

Date: c. 1839-1842

Publisher: Fujioka-ya Hikotar˘


I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

Actors: Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII (left) and Kataoka Gad˘ II (right) bowing to the audience

Date: 11th month of 1853

Publisher: Yamamoto-ya Heikichi