Comedian Kazuo Kuwabara Dies at 87

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Kazuo Kuwabara poses as a granny.

Kazuo Kuwabara, a member of the Yoshimoto Shinkigeki comedy company known for often playing an old woman, died of old age on Thursday. He was 87.

His funeral service was held on Saturday by his family and people close to him.

Kuwabara, whose real name was Kazumi Kuhara, was from Kitakyushu. In 1955, he became a student of the popular manzai comic duo Yumeji Itoshi and Kimi Koishi, before launching his own career as a manzai comedian. In 1961, he joined Yoshimoto Variety, the predecessor of Yoshimoto Shinkigeki. He became a leading member of the company and helped to create its golden era together with the late Tetsuo Hara, the late Kyo Hanaki and others. Kuwabara also served as troupe leader for some of the company’s shows.