NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

2007/9/28

武蔵御嶽神社 太々神楽 Musashi-mitake-jinja Daidai-kagura Musashi Mitake Shrine Daidai Kagura Dance

Jp En


Kagura is a traditional theatrical dance in the Shinto religion and Musashi Mitake Shrine Daidai Kagura is one of these dances that have been passed down since the Edo period.   Musashi Mitake Shrine sits on the top of Mount Mitake in Okutame, Tokyo.
The dance is said to have originally come from the Masaki Inari Shrine in Arakawa-ku, Tokyo, and it is based on the Izumo-style of Kagura dance.
     The shrine still serves many different kinds of “kou” each of which represents a group of followers.  The people in a kou believe that the highest form of praying to their god is to dedicate a dance and Daidai Kagura is performed on special occasions.
     There are two different types of performing style in Kagura dance.  In one type, masks are worn and in the other they are not.  Masked Kagura has more of an entertainment aspect with clear story lines, many of which are based on popular mythologies from folktales such as Kojiki.   The non-masked dance has a more religious or ritualistic aspect and it is performed to purge the place of evil spirits. These two dance performances used to have 12 titles each, however only 17 in total have survived and are still performed.
     Because Daidai Kagura is dedicated to god, the dancers kneel down and bow at the start and at the end of their dance.  Also, all of these dances are performed facing the image of god.
     Daidai Kagura preserves the essence of true Kagura which encourages people to enjoy themselves while they honor god.         

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address
176 Mitakesan, Oume, Tokyo 198-0175
name
Musashi Mitake Shrine




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