Edo String Puppetry & Comic Storytelling What Bunshichi Mottoi Did in Edo Old Town

江戸糸あやつり人形 × 落語「人情噺 文七元結」

December 20(Wed), 2017
Doors open at 18:00, Performance at 19:00

KFC Hall(Kokusai Fashion Center, Ryogoku, Tokyo [google map]

江戸っ子の気質―短気、意地っ張りで喧嘩っ早く、涙もろく正義感あふれ義理堅い―や江戸下町の生活風俗を色濃く感じることができる古典落語 「文七元結」を、380 年の歴史ある「江戸糸あやつり人形」(東京都無形文化財/国記録選択無形民俗文化財)で上演します。ロビーでは、芝居に出てくる「文七元結」の現物や、江戸糸あやつり人形の史料・人形の展示を行い、終演後には、人形に実際に触れていただける体験も実施します。
(体験は先着 30 名。当日、ご入場の際に受付でご予約下さい。) 年末の風物詩「文七元結」を、物語ゆかりの土地・両国で年末に観る、江 戸の風俗・文化を感じていただける体験・鑑賞プログラムです。



The play, What Bunshichi Mottoi Did in Edo Old Town, richly conveys Edokko characteristics—short-fused, feisty, stubborn, sentimental, righteous and loyal—and the life style of Edo old town. It will be performed with Edo string puppetry (Intangible Cultural Assets of Tokyo Metropolitan Government/Intangible Folk Cultural Properties that need measures such as making records). An exhibition of the cultural items in this play, historical records, and puppets will also be held. After the performance, the audience is invited to try manipulating the puppets. This visual and experiential program offers a winter wonderland of Edo customs and culture.

What Bunshichi Mottoi Did in Edo Old Town


  • A famous traditional comic storytelling piece has been transformed into a puppet show. Enjoy a slapstick success story filled with the laughter and tears of Edokko townspeople.
  • In four scenes: “Chobei’s Home”, “Private Matters at the Kadoebi House”, “By the Okawa River”, “Chobei’s Home”
  • Original play: “Bunshichi Mottoi” by Encho Sanyutei; revised by Magosaburo IX; supervised by Magosaburo XII.
  • Puppeteers: Magosaburo XII, Chie Youki, and other Edo string puppe- teers
  • Synopsis: A plasterer called Chobei loves to gamble. At the end of the year, he abandons work and comes home in the early hours of the morning. His debts grow shockingly. His loving daughter, O-Hisa, sells herself to a house in the Yoshiwara licensed quarters in exchange for 50 ryo* to pay his debts. In tears, Chobei promises to reform. On the way home with the cash, Chobei comes across Bunshichi Mottoi, a sales clerk at the Izumiya, who is attempting suicide by drowning. He tells Chobei that if he had 50 ryo, he wouldn’t have to die. As a fellow Edokko, Chobei takes pity on Bunshichi’s hopeless situation. What then does Bunshichi Mottoi do?! A winter’s tale to melt your heart will give you glimpses of down-and-out living, a gorgeous courtesans house, an absurd encounter at the river, and more.

*50 ryo is a euphemism for an impossibly large amount of money.


An exhibition on the Edo Marionette Theatre YOUKIZA will be held in the lobby of the theatre. Precious historical items include an illustrat- ed map of the five official theatres of the late Edo period, premodern flyers, and traditional puppet heads. Illustrated information on What Bunshichi Mottoi Did in Edo Old Town will also be on display. A free Bunshichi Mottoi souvenir is available for audience members, too.


A short post-performance workshop will be held for 30 persons who wish to try working the marionettes.
Please book at the door on arrival at the theatre. Post-performance booking is possible only when there are openings left.


Edo Marionette Theatre YOUKIZA

(Intangible Folk Cultural Properties that need measures such as making records/Tokyo Metropolitan Area Intangible Cultural Property)
Since Youkiza was founded by Magosaburo I in 1635, its history has spanned some three and a half centuries. The current leader is Magosaburo XII. Today`s Youkiza continues to thrive, preserving traditional marionette repertory and skills, as well as performing new plays and magic lantern shows, touring abroad, and holding international projects. Youkiza can boast of having per- formed in many areas around the globe.

Ticket Sales / チケット取扱い

Sale on: 4 September (Mon.) / 発売日:9月4日(月)

International Purchase / 海外からも購入可能なプレイガイド

Domestic Purchase / 国内向けプレイガイド

  • Tickets Today
    (International tourists ticket stations are in Ginza, Shibuya, Omotesando, Asakusa, & Shinjuku)
  • Confetti
    (For English) / カンフェティ (英語ページ)
    0120-240-540 (Weekdays 10:00~18:00)
  • Youkiza Office
    (special website for online booking) / 結城座 (特設サイト内でのインターネット予約対応)
    Online Ticketing Order Form

Inquiries / お問い合わせ

Inquiries in English should be made via email only.

042-322-9750 (平日 10:00-18:00)

Credit / クレジット

  • Organized by Arts Council Tokyo (Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture)
  • Supported by and in cooperation with Tokyo Metropolitan Government
  • Supported by Visit Sumida Tourism Office
  • Produced by Public-interest incorporated Foundation
  • Edo Marionette Theatre YOUKIZA