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Nightmare Bird

Nue (a night bird / monster)
Court Noble - the Emperor's Chief Advisor
Minamotono Yorimasa ( a Genji family general)
Ino Hayata (Yoshimasa's retainer)
Page Boy

This story is found in Volume 4 of the Story of the Heike. The Nue, though called a "bird" has the head of a monkey, the body of a tiger and a snake's tail. In this play, the stage actions of the monster highlight some of the special techniques found with Mibu Kyogen.

It roams the attic of the palace and has Emperor Konoe (12 th. c.) in its power, making him ill. The Emperor's Chief Advisor has a priest pray for the Emperor's health. The Nue binds him hand and foot, then strips him of his robes.

The Chief Advisor then sends Yorimasa and his retailer after the monster. Yorimasa shoots at the Nue but it escapes. Again Yorimasa with a bow and Hayata with a sword capture the monster and bring it to the Chief Advisor. The Chief Advisor recites a poem praising the victory, to which Yorimasa recites the second half. The Chief Advisor, suitably impressed by Yorimasa's military and literary knowledge, presents him with a sword.