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Kyoto Minamiza Theatre

#159 of 1,108 things to do in Kyoto
Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 198 Nakanomachi Yamatooji Nshi-iru, Shijo Ohashi, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto 605-0075, Kyoto Prefecture
Name/address in local language
Phone Number:
+81 75-561-1155
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours

MINAMIZA Theatre is one of the earliest of the seven officially licensed...

MINAMIZA Theatre is one of the earliest of the seven officially licensed Kabuki theatres built in the early Edo period in the Shijo Kawara area in Kyoto, even before Tokyo and Osaka, and continues to present Kabuki across over 400 years of history.

===Notification of closing Kyoto Minamiza Theatre===

We appreciate your patronage towards our performances.

We investigate whether we need to start construction for anti-earthquake reinforcement of Kyoto Minamiza Theatre, so that we close it for a while.

It takes time before we can announce the future plan of the theatre.

We appreciate your understanding.

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Small-group Kyoto Walking Tour including Traditional Japanese Snacks and Drinks
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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We just came back from an EOY kabuki performance in Kyoto's most famous kabuki theatre, a beautiful building in the Gion district. It was a medley of acts from various well-known... read more

Reviewed 18 December 2015
Sydney, Australia
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68 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 11: English reviews
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
144 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 December 2015

We just came back from an EOY kabuki performance in Kyoto's most famous kabuki theatre, a beautiful building in the Gion district. It was a medley of acts from various well-known kabuki plays. Of course, it was all in Japanese but with the book we bought at the theatre and the wealth of non verbal cues we managed to follow... More 

3 Thank Fell0w_Traveller49
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
2,073 reviews
1,377 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1,550 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 November 2015

The show was really good a real flavour of Japanese theatre - but a good job we had a English programme or we would have struggled to understand a good part of it. The seats are rather uncomfortable so dont expect american cinema recliners here they are small and rather hard so be prepared

5 Thank swift314
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level Contributor
41 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 July 2015

One does not need to know Japanese to enjoy Kabuki. It requires years of training. Beauty is the aim not reality.

Thank Jim T
Wayland, Massachusetts, United States
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 March 2015 via mobile

Mostly drama with lots of spoken word so difficult to appreciate most of the show. Costumes were superb as well as the sets. Dancing and acrobats were okay. Much of the show takes place in the audience in the orchestra section so sometimes unable to see everything from the balconies.

4 Thank Tim D
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 March 2015

After a disappointing experience at the Gion corner, myself and my partner did a bit of research back at the hotel and came across this theater. We were not disappointed, we had a fantastic time!! This was worth every yen, the show lasted for almost 4 hours, and we were entertained for every moment. For the particular show there was... More 

6 Thank Pixie B
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
78 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 January 2015

First taste of kabuki theatre - fascinating experience, but pretty incomprehensible. Googled the story to get a sense of what was going on. Seats not built for large westerners, so we jumped at the interval.

2 Thank AlanHoumann
North Attleboro, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
261 reviews
82 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 120 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 September 2014

We came for a performance of kabuiki theater and were very impressed. While we did not understand a word of it (the performance did not have any english headsets available for rental) and the story was hard to follow (the very brief program guide in english did not really give a good outline of the story), we nonetheless really were... More 

8 Thank HawaiiNut02760
Kerava, Finland
Level Contributor
26 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 July 2014

There was a rare geisha performance in the Minamiza in July which we went to see. They had geishas and maikos performing from each region. It was very traditional, the kimonos and movements were exquisite and we enjoyed it a lot. Some people found the music quite sleepy though... I heard that geishas and maikos usually have performances every spring... More 

9 Thank lene67424
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
97 reviews
56 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 June 2014 via mobile

This Kabuki Theater is located near to the Gion Train station. I really did enjoy the kabuki play especially if you are found of knowing more Japanese arts and culture. This place you shouln't miss to visit. An experience of the real drama and creative way of expression of Nipponggos.

3 Thank CarlaTortal
Level Contributor
301 reviews
60 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 186 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 May 2014

We went to an introduction to kabuki presentation. I would have given this 5 stars except that the first half of the program--explanations and demonstrations--was available only in Japanese. The second half consisted of two different and interesting dances. Very colorful and a good way to spend 90 minutes. The theater, while old, has been refurbished inside and is quite... More 

2 Thank paokano

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Staying in Gion

Neighbourhood Profile
Gion is Kyoto's famed Geisha District (called "Geiko" in Kyoto). Though Gion's many tea houses and entertainment restaurants are closed to foreigners, Geiko and Maiko in their traditional makeup with gilded hair in full kimono can be seen drifting the streets on their way to and from work, where they fan dance, sing, and play instruments for customers. Gion lights up at night, when the ancient-looking streets glow with lanterns along the river, where weeping willows catch the starlight and the air is warmed with conversation. Groups pass through to populate the restaurants and bars along the riverfront, but Gion still manages to be a mostly quiet district, due in large part to limited automotive traffic through many of its streets. Gion is a wonderful place to indulge in Kyoto's local and customary cuisines, and is best enjoyed after dark.
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