Episode 36: Understudies

Hi everyone! On this episode, Carly and guest violetposies talk about understudies in Takarazuka, and the understudy performances that took place during this year’s Elisabeth.

CLARIFICATION: we mention that Grand Hotel was at the same time as Rurouni Kenshin, but they weren’t running simultaneously; they took place at roughly the same time of year but one year apart.

SHOWS MENTIONED
Elisabeth (Moon 2018)
Debutante
Partial Time Travel
Rurouni Kenshin
Cocktail

ACTRESSES MENTIONED
Seira Hitomi
Ayanagi Shou
Mana Haruto
Takumi Hibiki
Haruno Sumire
Miya Rurika
Tsukishiro Kanato (Reiko)
Kazama Yuno
Akatsuki Chisei (Ari)
Sou Kazuho
Ayaoto Sena
Souma Seren
Ayaji Yurika
Ran Naoki
Sakihi Miyu
Hoshikaze Madoka
Yumeshiro Aya

GLOSSARY
Shinjin Kouen: a special “rising stars” performance each Grand Theater run in which all the roles are played by actresses with 7 years experience or less.

Special #15: The Golden Age of Takarazuka (1950s)

Hi all! A short episode continuing the history of the Takarazuka Revue, this time focusing on the 1950s. Please enjoy, and don’t forget to join the conversation on the blog, Facebook, or Twitter! Thanks!

Sources for this podcast episode:

  • 「夢を描いて 華やかに」(Painting Dreams Gloriously: Takarazuka Revue’s 80th Anniversary)  ISBN 4-924333-11-5
  • 「すみれ花歳月を重ねて」(Gathering Up the Years of the Violets: Takarazuka Revue’s 90th Anniversary) ISBN 4-484-04601-6
  • 「虹の橋 渡りつづけて 舞台編」(Continuing Over the Rainbow Bridge  Stage Volume: Takarazuka Revue’s 100th Anniversary) ISBN 978-4484146003
  • 「虹の橋 渡りつづけて 人物編」(Continuing Over the Rainbow Bridge People Volume: Takarazuka Revue’s 100th Anniversary) ISBN 978-4484146010

Songs used in this episode (from 「宝塚歌劇~戦後編~」Takarazuka Revue ~After the War~ album):

  • “What Is Your Name?” (What Is Your Name?) 1954 – Kasugano Yachiyo, Aratama Michiyo
  • “Farewell Song” (The Himeyuri Monument) 1953 – Akashi Teruko, Aratama Michiyo
  • “Today Is a Happy Sunday” (Swing High, Swing Low) 1951 – Koshiji Fubuki, Minami Yuuko, Utashima Utame, Akashi Teruko

Video link:

This is from an 80th anniversary video released by Takarazuka in 1994. The short 3 minute clip features Kasugano Yachiyo appearances from 1950s shows, including “Yu the Beautiful” (1951) and an ad for “A Vast Land of Roses” (1953) The link is on a Chinese vid site.

Images of the 1950s

The Grand Theater in the 1950s had two balconies! (From The Story of Takarazuka, published mid-1950s, personal collection.)

They had a really insane schedule of performances and appearances for the 1956 second Hawaiian tour  (From the Hawaiian Tour Album, personal collection).

The early 1950s marked the beginning of color GRAPH covers. Takarazuka Graph covers of the 1950s regularly featured musumeyaku stars (personal collection).

Urashima Utame (Jan. 1952)

Yachigusa Kaoru (Aug. 1952)

Tsukushi Mari (Nov. 1953)

 

They published small pamphlet programs in English for the 1950s Grand Theater  performances. Here are the covers of several, as well as some bio blurbs of the stars that were inside them. Funny reading. (personal collection)