Yoshihama Yoroi Kenbai

Yoshihama-yoroi Kenbai

A dynamic and up-tempo Hane-kenbai (hopping sword dance)

  • Traditional Arts

  • Yoshihama, Sanriku-cho, Oofunato city, Iwate prefecture

About the Yoshihama Yoroi Kenbai

Yoshihama Yoroi Kenbai is an up-tempo dance with dynamic movements, reason why it is also called Hane Kenbai (jumping sword dance). It dates to at least 200 years, but details are lost since the master of the time (stage name: Shimo) lost the written record, costumes props and properties in a fire in the 8th year of Showa (1933). The dance was no longer performed after the second world war, but was revived by the local youth volunteers in the 23d year of the Showa era (1948).

The site where they offer the dance starts from the house where it is their first Obon since a family member deceased. Yoshihama Yoroi Kenbai was registered as an intangible cultural property of the former Sanriku town in the 58th year of Showa (1983). After the fusion of Sanriku town with Oofunato, the dance became an intangible cultural property of Oofunato city.

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