Not only was Zeami a playwright of unparalleled genius and productivity, he was also an actor. About half the currently performed plays in the Japanese Noh repertory are from his hand. Besides composing over 150 plays, he wrote a number of critical works on Noh and its performance. Since his father was the most respected Noh performer of his time, Zeami grew up in the theater and remained with it until he was 59 and entered the priesthood. At 71 he was exiled to Sado Island. Why this happened is uncertain, but we can assume that he was pardoned, because he died in Kyoto. Most Noh plays in English collections are his.