Noh and Kyogen : The Performing Arts in Samurai Lord

The Tokugawa Art Museum

Ceremonial Noh in Owari Tokugawa Family's Households

Noh Costume, Thick Outer Robe (Atsuita-karaori), unknown, Edo period, 17th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum
Noh and Kyogen
Since Noh performances formed an integral part of household ceremonies and entertainment for guests, the Noh stage was an essential element of every Daimyō household.
Noh Mask, Ko-omote, Traditionally attributed to Zekan Yoshimitsu, Traditionally attributed to Zekan Yoshimitsu(1526?-1616), Edo period, 17th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum

In Edo period, noh became a ceremonial performance staged for official event. The Samurai Lord invited noh performers and prepared a stock of masks, costumes, and props for various noh performances.

Noh Costume, Thick Outer Robe (Atsuita-karaori), unknown, Edo period, 17th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum

The strong voicing, the choreographed movement of masked actors, and the instrumental music played by a flute, and drums, make noh among the most abstract stage art in the world.

Noh Costume, Thick Outer Robe (Atsuita-karaori), unknown, Edo period, 17th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum

The types of Noh costume worn for a given role in a given play are set.

Noh Costume, Thick Outer Robe (Atsuita-karaori), unknown, Edo period, 17th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum

Thick robes "atsuita" are made of heavy material.

Noh Costume, Outer Cloak (Chōken), Edo period, 19th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum

The Samurai Lord not only enjoyed attending noh but also sought to take lessons in the performance of the song, dance, and instruments such as hand drum and flute.

Noh Costume, Outer Cloak (Chōken), Edo period, 19th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum

This is the outer cloak called Choken. This cloak suggests the armor of a warrior-courtier and evokes the elegance of a woman's dance.

Hand-Drum Body (Ko-tsuzumi Dō) with Container Box, Muromachi period, 16th c., From the collection of: The Tokugawa Art Museum

Almost all the noh instruments in the museum belonged to and were played by the head or other members of the Owari Tokugawa family.

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Exhibit created by the Tokugawa Art Museum.

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