Hanamichi. The “Flower path” is a raised passageway that joins the stage on the audience’s left and passes straight through the auditorium. This is Kabuki’s most characteristic stage element. It is used not only for entrances and exits, but actually forms an integral part of the stage; many important moments are acted here.
The word hanamichi is used in a different, but related, way in colloquial speech. As a colloquial expression, the word implies that a person has arranged all his affairs and retired from public life, much as a Kabuki actor playing the lead takes his exit on the hanamichi amidst the applause of his devoted fans.
KABUKI ENCYCLOPEDIA by SAMUEL L. LEITER
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