Yamamoto Tojiro (山本東次郎)

Tojiro YAMAMOTO is a professional name for a kyogen performer of the Tojiro Yamamoto family of Okura school, which is handed down generation to generation.

Refer to the section on the kyogen Okura school for the origin of the Tojiro Yamamoto family.

The first generation

Tojiro Norimasa YAMAMOTO (September 25, 1836 - November 28, 1902) or in real name Norimasa YAMAMOTO.

He was born as the third son of Kasuke Yasunao AKABA, a feudal retainer of the Bungo Nakagawa clan in Edo. After being ordered by the clan to take kyogen training at the age of 11, he became a disciple of Magozaemon MIYANO and then Kenkichi KOMATSU. He named himself To YAMAMOTO in his later life.

His oldest son took the name of Tojiro YAMAMOTO the Second.

The second generation

Tojiro Noritada YAMAMOTO (September 2, 1864 - September 1, 1935) or in real name Noritada YAMAMOTO.

He was born in Edo. He was the oldest son of the first Tojiro. He was named Yasujiro YAMAMOTO and Yasutaro YAMAMOTO, and then took the name of Tojiro YAMAMOTO the Second in 1898.

His adopted son took the name of Tojiro YAMAMOTO the Third.

The third generation

Tojiro Norishige YAMAMOTO (September 26, 1898 - July 26, 1964) or in real name Norishige YAMAMOTO.

He was born in Taketa-machi, Oita Prefecture. In 1929, he graduated from the Department of Chinese Philosophy, Toyo University. He was adopted by Tojiro YAMAMOTO the Second. He, or Susumu KAWACHI, took the name of Tojiro YAMAMOTO the Third. He was the author of 'Aikyogen no Kenkyu' (The Study of Comic Interlude in Noh). He toured around schools throughout the country in order to promote the kyogen.

His oldest son took the name of Tojiro YAMAMOTO the Fourth. His second son was Noritada YAMAMOTO and the third son was Noritoshi YAMAMOTO.

The fourth generation

Tojiro Norihisa YAMAMOTO (May 5, 1937 -) or in real name Norihisa YAMAMOTO. He is the administrative director of the Suginami Nohgakudo (Noh theater).

He was born in Wada, Suginami Ward, Tokyo. He is the oldest son of Tojiro YAMAMOTO the Third. In 1961, he graduated from the Department of Japanese Literature, Kokugakuin University. He made his debut in 1942, playing the shite (a main role) in 'Shibiri' (Pins and Needles). In 1972, he took the name of Tojiro YAMAMOTO IV with a revised piece 'Shishimuko' (The Lion Husband). He is the author of 'Kyogen no Susume' (Suggestions for Kyogen).

Major prizes he received include: the Art Encouragement Prize in 1964. The Minister of Education Award for Fine Arts in 1992 and 1993. The Hosei University Noh Drama Prize in Memory of Kanze Hisao in 1994. The Medal with Purple Ribbon in 1998. And many others.