Konparu Hachijo (金春八条)

Hachijo KONPARU (September 30, 1886 - May 17, 1962) was the 78th soke (head) of Shite Kata Konparu school (one of the five Shite Kata schools). He was a noh actor. His real name was Mitsutaro. He called himself Hachijo after he retired.

He was born in Nara Prefecture as the first son of Shichiro Koun KONPARU, who was the 76th soke. His younger brother was Eijiro KONPARU (the 77th soke).

His first noh stage performance was in 'Mochizuki' in 1870 and played kokata (child's role), but he injured his foot when he was 19 years old, and his leg movements were never smooth after that. For this reason, his younger brother Eijiro took over soke when his father died in 1910; however, he removed himself from the soke position and Mitsutaro then became the 78th soke in 1914.

He was not very popular because he based his performances in Nara Prefecture, the Konparu school did not have much influence for a long time, and in Tokyo, Banba SAKURAMA and Kyusen SAKURAMA, a father and son team, of the same school were attracting attention. However, later in his life, Tetsuji TAKECHI highly valued his performances, making him highly recognized among professionals. Being inspired by that event, Mitsutaro committed himself to high quality noh plays for 10 years after the war. He let his first son, Nobutaka KONPARU, take over soke in 1951, started to call himself Hachijo in 1954, retired from noh performances, and died in 1962.

[Original Japanese]