Notes on specific plays - 'Yamamba'

Yamamba - Masks (click on image for full-sized image)

The Yamamba/Yamauba (Mountain Crone) Mask. Note the gilded eyes.

from Noh Masks by Toru Nakanishi (Hoikusha, publ. date uncertain)

The two variants of how the Mountain Crone dresses -- one with long black hair, the other with white hair. Tyler writes, "In the Kanze, Komparu and Kongo schools, the Mountain Crone may wear a white wig rather than a black one, in which case the play acquires greater dignity since the shite is then truly an ancient woman." (Japanese No Dramas, p. 314)

The Mt. Woman wears either the Fukai ('Deep Well') Mask, on left, or the Omi-onna ('Woman from Omi') Mask, on right (The Fukai mask is from Noh Masks by Toru Nakanishi, Hoikusha, publ, date unknown; the Omi-onna mask is from a web site about kyogen and noh, link: nohmasks_women )

... A group of Omi women masks has a very interesting effect on stage

from a web page of a Noh mask carver, link: nohmasks_momijigari.htm

The mask of the dancer (yujo) is that of the young woman (ko-omote)

Yamamba - Scenes (click on image for full-sized image)

On the left, Yamamba seated while she and the chorus describe the mountains where she lives (Tyler, p. 324-326); on the right, Yamamba dancing with fan as the chorus describes her transformation into a spirit (Tyler, p. 326 'and clouds that screen the distant view ...'; S-NKBZ 59:579 )

(from Sugiura Toyohiko's [Noh master] homepage. link: noh_sugiurahomepage )

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