Keisei hako denju (Instruction in a courtesan's secrets: けいせい筥伝授), which premiered in 1/1804 at the Kado Theater, Osaka to great acclaim, was written by Segawa Jokô II (1757-1833) and others. It was an adaptation of Namiki Shôzô's (1730-73) drama Kyûshû kanegamisaki of 1759. Segawa Jokô's script has apparently not survived, although the artist Shôkôsai Hanbei (松好齋半兵衛 act. c. 1795–1809) did produce an e-iri nehon (illustrated playbook: 絵入根本) in 1807 with the actor Arashi Rikan I (嵐璃寛 earlier name Arashi Kitsusaburô II 嵐橘三郎) as Gonroku, a role that also appeared in the play Enshoku akisame monogatari (A risque version of the tale of Akisame: 艶色秋雨 [物] 語) in 9/1804 at the Kyoto Shijô Kitakawa Theater. Other roles included Isoroku and Nagaoka Yusai.. There was also a woodblock-printed e-zukushi banzuke (playbill: 絵尽番付 a Kamigata term for small scenario booklets of 12 to 20 pages with very brief texts and images) that had a stencil-colored (kappazuri: 合羽摺) cover. The booklet was published by Gyokko ken (玉光軒) for the premiere in 1804, and it also illustrated another play on the program — Sugata no hana musume Dôjôji (Appearance of a flower — the maiden at the Dôjô Temple: 容艶花娘道成寺).
Shikan stands in a snowy mountain pass as a river cascades behind him. He holds an enormous fukiya (blowgun: 吹き矢) used for hunting. His red underrobe has a dragon printed in brass metallics, as is the pattern on his blue skirt.
This is one of Hokuei's visually compelling full-length portraits of actors striking mie (climactic poses: 見得) before a painted stage scene. Another impression is in Schwaab, Osaka Prints, no. 165 (see OSP ref. below).
References: IKB-I, no. 2-439; KNP-6, p. 299; OSP, no. 165