Teruyuki Kagawa Is Suspected of Sexual Assault, and Ennosuke Ichikawa Is in the Hospital — A String of Mishaps at a Prestigious Kabuki Theater | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Teruyuki Kagawa Is Suspected of Sexual Assault, and Ennosuke Ichikawa Is in the Hospital — A String of Mishaps at a Prestigious Kabuki Theater

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Ennosuke (left) and Kagawa head to a long-established eel restaurant in Asakusa, Tokyo. Photo taken in June ’20.

The unexpected news must have shocked all of Japan.


Ennosuke Ichikawa (47), who was found unconscious at his residence on May 18, On the same day, the show’s start time was set for that day at 11:30 a.m. His manager traveled to Ennosuke’s residence in Meguro-ku, Tokyo, when the actor failed to show up at the Meiji-za Theater that day. Ennosuke was found in a partially underground closet, dazed and in shock, with his mother, Nobuko Kinoshi (75), who was lying in the second-floor living room, along with Danshiro Ichikawa, his father, 76.

A letter that appeared to be a suicide note was left close to where Mr. Ennosuke had collapsed. It was addressed to a man he knew by his real name, Takahiko. Mr. Ennosuke’s health appears to be in good condition despite being rushed to the hospital after responding to the calls of the paramedics who had already arrived on the scene.

His parents, unfortunately, passed away. Danshiro-san was discovered dead at the hospital where they were taken, and Nobuko-san was discovered dead at home, both of them lying side by side on the floor with a futon covering them from the neck down. Both were dressed in pajamas and had no apparent wounds, according to a reporter from a major newspaper’s society section.

The Ministry of Justice gave Ennosuke the name “Ichikawa Ennosuke IV” in June 2012. He took over as the Omodakaya clan’s leader. But the family’s problems go beyond just Ennosuke’s being rushed to the hospital. Teruyuki Kagawa (Ichikawa Chuguruma, 57), Ennosuke’s cousin, was accused of sexually assaulting a hostess at a Ginza nightclub in August 2022 by Shukan Shincho.

The two graduated from a prestigious boys’ school.

Besides being members of the Sawasabaya clan, Ennosuke and Kagawa have something else in common.

Besides being members of the Sawasabaya clan, Ennosuke and Kagawa have something else in common.

They both graduated from Chiyoda Ward’s prestigious Gyosei High School in Tokyo. Numerous other Kabuki actors have come from this school. Kankuro Nakamura XVIII, Kichiemon Nakamura II, Yajuro Bando, and Koshiro Matsumoto X. The University of Tokyo’s graduate school is called Gyosei.

Gyosei is a boys’ preparatory school that annually admits 50 students to Waseda and Keio Universities and about 10 students to Tokyo University. Mr. Ennosuke also received his degree from Keio University’s Faculty of Letters. At the University of Tokyo’s Faculty of Letters, Mr. Kagawa received his diploma.

Why do so many children of Kabuki actors and actresses enter Gyosei? Nobuyasu Morigami, director of the Morigami Education Research Institute and an expert on junior high and high school entrance examinations, explains.

Gyosei is the only Catholic school for boys in Tokyo, founded by a French order called the Society of Mary. The school rules are strict and teachers are strict with students. Discipline is highly valued. The Kabuki world also requires adherence to traditional manners, so there is probably an affinity between the two.

Our fundamental policy is to provide an integrated education from elementary school onward, even though we also accept applications for junior high school (we also have a kindergarten).  In the elementary school entrance exam, consideration is given to the child’s family background and roots in addition to their academic aptitude. Families with a well-known Nashien family are greatly favored in entrance exams.

Ennosuke caused controversy despite having attended a prestigious university and being well-known in the Kabuki community. What will happen next is what’s interesting.

There may have been an attempt at suicide by the Ennosuke family. The parents’ deaths were attributed to psychotropic drug poisoning, according to an autopsy of their bodies. When they were discovered, they were foaming at the mouth, and there was vomit and diarrhea close by, indicating that they appeared to have consumed a significant amount of sleep-inducing drugs.

The fact that Mr. Sarunosuke also had vomit marks strongly suggests that he had used drugs as well. We had a family meeting, he said, telling the police. The will stated that the estate would be inherited by someone other than a relative. The investigation will now focus on determining whether all three family members committed suicide or if it was assisted by someone, according to a society department reporter.

A well-known Kabuki actor started a huge uproar that is still a mystery. The entire nation, not just the people involved, is closely watching to see what will happen next.

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