C02 General View of Saruwaka-cho

"Yobukodori Waka San-cho Zenzu"
Artist: Yoshifuji O-ban, Colour print, Triptych
Published: in Edo
Ritsumeikan Art Research Center (arcUP4992,4993,4994)

These two pictures is the general view of theatre district named "Saruwaka-cho" which established under the Tenpo reconstruction (1830-1843). Before the reconstruction, there are Kabuki theatres in various areas, such as Sakai-machi, Kobiki-cho, Fukiya-cho. The detailed commentary on the transmit of Saruwaka-cho is here.
These general views tells us that the three leading theatres of Edo were allocated from block 1 to 3 of Saruwaka-cho, Nakamura-za theatre in Saruwaka-cho block 1, Ichimura-za theatre in block 2, and Morita-za theatre (Kawarazaki-za theatre) in block 3. In addition to this, there were also theatres for puppet plays, such as Satsuma-za theatre and Yuki-za theatre.

・About "Yobukodori Waka San-cho Zenzu"
Theatre district was exclusive space as this picture shows us that the whole town was enclosed and 4 wooden gates were settled to limit comings and goings. The colours tell what kind of facilities it is, for example, red for theatres and actors' residents, yellow for shops and restaurants deeply connected to theatres, such as Cha-ya (tea house), Yu-ya (bathhouse), Tabako-ya (tabacco shop), Saka-ya (sake shop). (The uncoloured space might be vacant plots. Ubaga-ike pond is included to this area.)
On each theatre and its Zamoto's house, their crests are printed, for example, "a sumikirikaku (an octagonal shape made by cutting the four corners off of a square) and a ginkgo leaf" for Nakamura-za theatre and Nakamura Kanzaburo's house, "a circle and a orange flower" for Ichimura-za theatre and Ichimura Hazaemon's house, and "two tangled squares and double-comma crests" for Kawarazaki-za theatre and Kawarazaki Gonnozuke's house. While Zamoto literally means an owner of a theatre, but they had halt two other roles in Edo, a holder of performance rights and a leader of a troop. In that period, every theatre had to be authorized by Tokugawa shogunate to run a play officially. Zamoto was a essential position which could apply for, therefore each theatre had set it.
By the way, the three theatres, Nakamura-za theatre, Ichimura-za theatre, Morita-za theatre, are regarded as Edo sanza (the three leading theatres in Edo) in generally, but here is Kawarazaki-za theatre instead of Morita-za theatre in the picture. This is because Kawarazaki-za theatre was Morita-za's hikae yagura which take over the performance right on behalf of when a theatre fell collapse. Hikae yagura and hon yagura made a pair, such as Miyako-za for Nakamura-za theatre, Kiri-za for Ichimura-za theatre, and Kawarazaki-za for Morita-za theatre. The backgrounds of origin of hikae yagura. This system was introduced for the restaurants/shops stood in the theatre district which lived on customers who had come to see stages. If those three major theatre had been closed, those 本櫓の休座は芝居茶屋など劇場周辺で生計を立てている人々にも大きな影響を与えたことから控櫓の制度が誕生した。この控櫓の制度が誕生したきっかけは Morita-za theatre 森田座にあるとされている。当初、本櫓の休座によって多くの芝居関係者から本櫓以外の興行の許可を願い出ていたが、その申請が受理されることはなかった。しかし、森田座の座元より正式な休座届けが提出されたことで控櫓制度が導入されることとなった。森田座は本櫓の中でも一番休座が多く、享保20年より約10年間河原崎座に興行を託している。その後も幾度となく興行不振に陥り、その都度河原崎座が興行を行っていた。猿若町移転時も河原崎座が興行し、安政2年9月まで河原崎座による興行が続くため、この作品は猿若町移転時の天保14年(天保の改革は13年だが実際の移転は14年5月)から安政2年9月までの猿若町の様子を描いたものである。There are not only Kabuki theatres but also theatres for puppet plays, such as Satsuma-za theatre and Yuki-za theatres. 江戸全ての芸能を猿若町に集結させたことがわかる。Yuki-za theatre which stood in front of Ichimura-za theatre had stood 向かいにある結城座は猿若町移転前も葺屋町にて市村座の向かいに劇場を構えていた。中村座の向かいにあるSatsuma-za 薩摩座も移転前は堺町に劇場を構えていたため、1丁目は堺町、2丁目は葺屋町、3丁目は木挽町の町並みをそのまま移したと考えられる。

・"Edo Meisho no uchi Saruwaka-machi no Zu"
Morita-za theatres September Ansei 2 森田座が描かれていることから安政2年9月以後の猿若町の様子を描いた作品である。"Yobukodori Waka san-cho Zenzu" と多少配置が異なるが、red for 紅色は役者、yellow for .黄色は茶屋の位置を示している。町の様子を見ると、劇場前の大通りには大勢の人々が描かれ、猿若町全体の賑わいが伝わる。また、至る所にKataoka Nizaemon and Sawamura Tanosuke 役者の名が入った幟が掲げられており、当時の各座出勤役者の人気どころの名前が並んでいる。This flagこの幟は各役者の贔屓客による贈り物で、幟以外にも様々な品が役者の元に届けられた。()