Matsumoto Koshiro (Father) – Fujima Noriko (Mother) – Ichikawa Somegoro (Brother) – Matsumoto Kio (Sister) – Matsu Takako – (also including the most kawaii family’s pet dogs Mush, Roku, Toto, Bon-chan)
Matsumoto Koshiro (Matsu’s father) was born in August 19th, 1942. When America took over Japan in the 1940s, Kabuki was once forbidden in Japan, they almost lost their national treasure. But then, an American military general watched Matsu’s great grandfather in a kabuki play, and he was amazed. So the American general allowed kabuki to continue exist in Japan. If not because of Matsu’s great grandfather, kabuki will already be extinct by now. Matsu’s great grandfather was also the first kabuki actor who bold enough to step over to musical theatre. It used to be a taboo for kabuki actor to act in modern/musical plays besides kabuki itself (not to mention to be a TV star!).
Back when he was young, Matsumoto Koshiro had a strong interest in western musical, so he eventually took the role in The King & I. By that time, he already lost hope that he could ever return to kabuki. He thought he could never act in a kabuki play ever again. But eventually, he could and since then, many kabuki actors crossover to other entertainment world….modern plays, musical, TV dramas, widescreen movies, etc. So, if not because of Matsu’s great grandfather and father, we might not be able to see Ichikawa Ebizo, Nakamura Shido, Ichikawa Somegoro, etc on TV^^
He was once offered a role in a BROADWAY MUSICAL titled “Man from La Mancha” when he was 27 years old. He was shocked and he doesn’t know what to do, back then. “Should I take the role? Coz the play will be ALL IN ENGLISH, and I can’t speak english at all,”. And if he fail acting the role good enough, it would not only embarrass himself, but Japan would also be in shame….as he is the first Japanese actor to act in a Broadway musical. Even though he hesitated and kinda scared, he boldly took the role. Then, he ask help from an acting tutor in New York, who once learned kabuki from his father when he was in Japan. Since he has to learn English from ZERO while the play is in 1 month, his acting tutor told him to memorize ALL ROLE’s DIALOGUES in the play. So, he’d know when the other actor or actress miss the lines. He was told, “It is TO ACT, not to think,”. And Matsumoto Koshiro eventually played his role wonderfully and got a surround applause from the audience. In 1990, when he was 48, he got the leading role in The King & I once again, and this time, in LONDON’s WEST-END!! All the casts were British, except himself. He’s done lots of kabuki plays, contemporary musical stage plays, dramas, movies and CMs. He worked many times with his children Somegoro, Kio and Matsu in so many projects. He still active. Thus, even until now…. Matsumoto Koshiro is nicked as THE KABUKI KING. His kabuki family clan, is the most popular one in Japan. Truly a great and accomplished man. His reputation really precedes him and he’s earned it!^^
Fujima Noriko (Matsu’s mother) was born in year 1945 at Fukouka. She was the daughter of a doctor family. She came to Tokyo to enter Keio Gijuku University, Culture faculty. Kagawa Kyoko (actress) introduced her to Matsumoto Koshiro, and they got married in December 1969. Noriko-san is the president (shacho) of Matsumoto Koshiro’s joint stock corporation. She released 3 books so far, the titles are Koraiya’s Wife (published by Mainichi Daily), Family Break (published by Hochi) and My Daily Life With Kimono (published by Bunka Shuppankyoku).
Matsumoto Kio (Matsu’s elder sister) was born in 15 October 1971. Graduated from Women’s Art Junior College. She appeared few times in TV dramas ( 2000 Ashita wo Dakishimete, 2004 Ryoma ga Yuku and 2006 Nobunaga’s Coffin), a cameo in April Story 1997 movie and stage plays (Change Ring, Natsu Hotel, Matoryo-Shika, Bunny Tears, La Mancha no Otoko).
Ichikawa Somegoro (Matsu’s elder brother) was born in January 8th, 1973. His notable TV dramas as leading and guest were (2000) BRAND, (2000) Food Fight, (2001) Rocket Boys, (2002) Yoisho no Otoko, (2004) PRIDE and (2008 ) Ryokiteki na Kanojo. Meanwhile his wide-screen movies (1997) Welcome Back Mr McDonald and April Story, (2004) Ashurajo no Hitomi, (2005) Semishigure and (2009) Next Sunday. Somegoro also active and in famous kabuki plays, taiga dramas, and musical plays. He played a role in his first Kabuki stage and in his first TV drama (together with his father) at the age of 5. Somegoro played the role of Hamlet at the age of 14, as the youngest Hamlet in the history. By his 20’s, he is considered one of the major young Kabuki actors of his generation, with proven trackrecords and the noble good look.
Somegoro married with Sonoko Seki. Sonoko was an English graduated from Colombia University in New York. After that, she entered Manhattan School of Music taking jazz music study – Bachelor of Music… But it was halfway.. got to stop and return home. And yes, Sonoko is coming from wealthy family – running business as luxury foreign car dealers, real estates and restaurants. Her family home at Setagaya Ward. But her father passed away and her mother had to help out by operating restaurant.
Ichikawa Somegoro married with Sonoko Seki on 23 November 2003 and had been blessed a baby boy named Fujima Itsuki on 27 March 2005 to be the next heir of Matsumoto Family. Then the couple got a baby girl Fujima Kaoruko on 11 February 2007.
Last June 2007, Fujima Itsuki (around 2 years old) made his first debut in a kabuki play, in Kabukiza theatre, together with his grandfather, Matsumoto Koshiro. And recently (2009), Itsuki-chan appeared again, attending the press conference.. which got quite big spotlight from media. Yappari~ that’s our young prince – our lovely third generation, na.
(*all above sources were from
collection of KMFZ and nuralisya-own-digging. thnx yanie for the big help^^)