NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

2007/3/29

盛岡さんさ踊り Morioka-sansa-odori Morioka Sansa Dance Festival

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Morioka Sansa Dance Festival in Morioka City of Iwate Prefecture is a Bon Odori, a Buddhist dance festival held every year to honor the deceased spirits of ancestors.
It takes place each year at the beginning of August and is one of the biggest festivals with a spectacular dance comprising of more than 30,000 performers.
“Sansa” is said to come from the word to cheer, but there is no clear record of the origin of the dance and a few different legendary stories have been passed down. One of them is that the dance festival was started to honor Mitsuishi for slaying a demon. Another is that the dance was introduced by Nichiren Shounin, the founder of the Nichiren religious sect.
The dance festival evolved into a dance style called Nanbu Teodori or Southern Hands Dance during Edo Period, in which performers increasingly used their hands to keep a rhythm. The style was similar to the one seen today and the dance spread to other areas of the region.
This dancing parade consists of many dancers wearing yukata kimonos with brightly colored waist sashes and drummers who are said to number more than any other  parade in Japan. The festival is a popular event to bring cheer and celebrate the summer in Morioka City.

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Morioka, Iwate Prefecture
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Morioka Sansa Dance Festival




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