Zeami Motokiyo

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Zeami Motokiyo

(zā`ä`mē mō`tō`kē`yō) or

Kanze Motokiyo,

c.1363–c.1443, Japanese actor, playwright, and drama theorist. Son of the itinerant actor Kanami, at the age of eleven Zeami attracted the attention of the shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, who became his first major patron. Later Zeami's fortunes fluctuated with changing political circumstances; at the age of seventy, he was banished to a remote island for two years. As playwright, Zeami wrote works of astonishing poetic resonance, incorporating myth, legend, and literary allusion into densely interwoven imagery. As drama critic, Zeami produced both practical instruction for actors and highly theoretical work which elevates the art of the No theater to the level of court poetry and linked verse.


See studies by T. B. Hare (1986) and M. J. Smethurst (1989).

References in periodicals archive ?
However, when they are assigned to read a story by Bessie Head, poems by Niyi Osundare, or a play by Zeami Motokiyo, they can see that the reading is between the same covers as more familiar canonical authors like Voltaire, Dostoevsky, Eliot, and Kafka, and given the same serious treatment by the editors in the headnotes and explanatory footnotes.
The main structuring device of No, what Monica Bethe and Karen Brazell term "the basic aesthetic principle underlying the No" (Bethe and Brazell 1978, 6), is the Jo-Ha-Kyu pattern, a pattern that the chief artist of No drama, Zeami Motokiyo, found frequently occurring in nature (1974, 191).
Other playwrights represented include Sophocles, Shakespeare, Ibsen, Tennessee Williams, and Zeami Motokiyo.
In Fushi kaden (The Transmission of the Flower of Forms), the first treatise by Zeami Motokiyo (c.
Actor, playwright, and theorist of the noh theater Zeami Motokiyo (1363-1443) wrote 21 treatises on such aspects of theater as the nature of dramatic illusion, audience interest, tactics for composing successful plays, somaticity, and body training.
However, the most influential discussions of literary theory do not take place until somewhat later still, first with the important writings of the great No dramatist Zeami Motokiyo (1363-1443), then, after a gap, with the reflections of the great haiku poet Basho (1644-1699) and the great Kabuki playwright Chikamatsu Monzaemon (1653-1725).