NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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さいとりさし Saitorisashi Saitorisashi

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Saitorisashi is a traditional dance that has been carried down over the ages in Tottori. Saitorisashi means the person who captures, or the act of capturing, a small bird, which was traditionally used by the nobility as bait in falconry.

A long time ago, people, who been granted the license or pardon to engage in saitorisashi, gained power and brought ruin to the land. It is said that the saitorisashi dance originated when ordinary folk, in order to oppose the tyranny of feudalism, started to dance and sing in a Kyogen style (a comical form of theater) at drinking parties and so on. Shortly after, the idea of saitorisashi changed, from capturing birds to 'capturing' a wife or happiness, and was passed down as a congratulatory kyogen.

The dance is performed by four or five people, all wearing happi coats and headbands, while holding the stick of Torimochi, and hanging a license of pardon on their waists. The humorous outfit, accompanied by the energetic singing and dancing, results in a very pleasant, and enjoyable atmosphere. Saitorisashi is an important traditional performing art, which has been passed down from the Edo period.
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