Lesson Request お稽古のお願い

Today it was back to business as usual at Somemaru’s. He seemed rather energetic at breakfast despite having such a busy weekend, and having to worry about finishing his book. I was glad to see him in such high spirits. After breakfast I gave him a massage.

After cleaning the house we had some time to relax before Somemaru left for an interview with reporters. I have been invited to the University of Tokyo to give a talk on rakugo, and the organizers also asked me if I could give performances in English and Japanese. As I wrote in a previous blog, Somemaru taught me the story Sake no kasu (Sake Lees) informally one night as we were making kasu-jiru (sake lees soup) for dinner. I thought this would be a good time to request a formal lesson for the story Sake no kasu. I checked his day planner and Febuary 4th looked like the best day since he is also giving Somekichi a lesson that day.

In the professional rakugo world it is protocol to perform a story only after you have had formal lessons and have received permission from your master to perform it publicly. I am not a professional hanashika by any means, but since I would like to perform in Tokyo the story that Somemaru taught me, it is only right that I play by the rules of the game. I told Somemaru that I have been working on memorizing Sake no kasu, and would like to perform it in Japanese and English in Tokyo next week. Would he please give me a lesson on the 4th, I asked. “Okay,” was his answer. I was so happy he said yes. Now the pressure is on–not only will this will be my first formal lesson, I also want to show Somemaru that I have some glint of potential as a performer of his art.

I have just three days to be ready!



プロの落語界では、ちゃんとお稽古して、公に噺をする許可を師匠からいただくまでは、高座で発表しないということが儀礼です。僕はプロの噺家ではないですが、師匠が教えてくださった噺を東京でしたいと思っているので、僕もちゃんとお稽古をして、師匠の許可をもらった方がいいと思いました。今朝、師匠に言ったのは「噺を少しずつ覚えてきました。今度、東京でこの噺をしたいと思っています。4日にお稽古をお願いしてもよろしいでしょうか。」 師匠の返事は「はい、いいよ。」でした。OKと言ってくださって、本当に嬉しかったです。と同時にプレッシャーも感じています。初の正式なお稽古ですし、師匠に僕にでも落語を語る可能性が少しでもあるということも見せたいです。



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