Nagauta Shamisen Master, Yojiro Kashiwa III.
Member of the Nagauta Association
Nagauta Kashiwa-Ryu Alumni Association member
Onoe Kikugoro Theatrical Company’s music group
Born in Tokyo in 1983. Son of Isaburo Kashiwa III.
He was introduced to Fumiko Imafuji at the age of 5 and made his first appearance on stage the following year. He spent the next 20 years under her tutelage.
At age 19, I began training as a Nagauta Shamisen master in earnest under Yoshijiro Imafuji.
In October 2003, I made my first appearance in the Kabuki dance Renjishi by Danjuro Ichikawa XII and Shoroku Onoe IV under the stage name Seiichi Kashiwa.
In April 2004, the Kashiwa-Ryu Alumni Association allowed him to use the name Yojiro Kashiwa, and in May of the same year, he appeared in Kanjincho with Ebizo Ichikawa XI at the Kabukiza. Then, in October this same year, I performed in Paris.
I also performed in the Chikamatsuza by Tojuro Sakata IV in Korea and the Paris Opera Performance by Danjuro Ichikawa XII and Ebizo Ichikawa XI. By my mid-20’s, I had performed in three productions abroad.
Through the remaining of my 20’s and in my early 30’s, I changed from being a performer in Kabuki to a free Nagauta Shamisen master, playing mainly in Kabuki, Japanese dances, and Nagauta concerts in Tokyo and around Japan.
In May 2015, I joined the Onoe Kikugoro Theatrical Company music group as a Nagauta Shamisen master for Kabuki.
In July 2016, I made my first appearance as the Shamisen lead for Kabuki musicians (Kuromisu-no-Butaishi) on the Narukami tour with the Association of Public Theaters and Halls in Japan. This tour also saw my first rendition of O-zatsuma at the end of the Kabuki play.
In January 2017, I made my first appearance as lead Shamisen in Boshibari with the Shinshun Asakusa Kabuki.
In August 2020, I made my first appearance as lead Shamisen in Boshibari with the Hachigatsu-Hanagata Kabuki.
I have performed in many Kabuki plays in Tokyo at venues, including Kabukiza, various national theaters, and the Shimbashi Embujo, as well as venues in Osaka, Kyoto, Nagoya, Hakata, and other cities.
I have appeared in the media on the NHK FM Japanese music program, NHK E-Tele Kabuki program, Japanese dance program, and other broadcasts. In April 2014 I appeared in TV Asahi's "Untitled Concert."
My relatives include Isaburo Kashiwa II and Mitsugoro Bando IX (grandfathers), Mitsugoro Bando X (uncle), and Minosuke Bando II (cousin).