Profile of Sakurama Ujin
Sakurama Makoto (later Ujin) was born in Tokyo in 1961 as the first grandson of Sakurama Michio, a Living National Treasure of Komparu Noh School. Makoto started his Noh training at the age of 4 under his grandfather, and made his first appearance on the stage at the same age. He was adopted as Michio’s son to become his successor but Michio suddenly passed away when Makoto was still in his 20’s. Then, his uncle, Sakurama Kintaro, took the role of Makoto’s Noh teacher and adopted Makoto as his son.
In 2004, Makoto succeeded the Sakurama family’s great name “Ujin”, which was the name of the father of Sakurama Sajin, one of the great Noh masters in the Meiji Period.
Today, Sakurama Ujin is the 21st family head of the Sakurama family.
Ujin is currently a member of the Nohgaku Performers’ Association and a holder of the Important Intangible Cultural Asset. He has taken the position as a director of the said association in the past. He has made a great achievement in Noh performance in Japan as well as in many foreign countries. He has been playing torchlight Noh performance at Shomyo-ji Temple in Kanazawa-Bunko for more than 20 years. This stage is extremely popular in this district and the tickets are sold out in a couple of days every year.
He has also played Noh in television dramas including Noh scenes such as in "Yashima" - a story about the battles between the most famous two leading samurai families, the Genji and the Heike in the middle ages - ; in "Nobunaga, King of Japan", which was broadcast by NHK; and also in "Takeda Shingen" and "Futari Shizuka". Furthermore, he has been invited as a guest speaker on radio shows.
Between his Noh stages, Ujin teaches Noh (dancing and singing) in Tokyo, Kanagawa, Saitama, Shizuoka, Niigata, Osaka and Kyushu, as well as at the Bungakuza in Tokyo and Dokkyo University in Saitama.