Yosakoi Dance Festival in Kochi City is one of the most exciting events you can experence!
What makes this festival unique and memorable?
If you ever get the opportunity to visit Kochi Prefecture you must try to coincide with the Yosakoi Summer Dance Festival which is held on the second weekend in August. This dance festival first started in 1954 and has spread to over 200 places in Japan, as well as in 33 countries and regions around the world.
I was able to attend a very special performance in Tokyo which was live streamed on Youtube to the world, a brilliant way to share this art form within these challenging times of covid.
You can watch the performance and I'm sure you will get a sense on why this dance is so popular and more than that, feel the electricity and excitement that I felt being there. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCA2qUECdUhGq6wMNqX7jU7w
Yosakoi Museum gives you all year access to the festival
Another way to learn more about Yosakoi is to visit the museum located in central Kochi City. You can see displays of the festival from the first time to today, the medals that the dance groups win, the costumes, the posters from year to year promoting the event and a lot of historical memorabilia. What you should absolutely do is learn the dance with an interactive giant screen that will teach you the movements step by step and when you have mastered the dance, you should design your personalized 'Naruko' wooden hand clappers to take home as a souvenir or to use whenever you have the chance to show off you new dance moves! Here is the link to the museum, it's only in Japanese but you can follow the Facebook page to coordinate if you hope to join the festival in the future. http://www.honke-yosakoi.jp/
An explosion of music, color and dance energy!
The streets are alive with the big truck boombox music pumping into the air, the dancers are moving with a very unique combination of grace mixed with high energy movements and this combination of loud music and joy creates a energy and electricity in the air. Very addictive, for me I have been to the festival five times and hope one day to have to courage to join my local dance group that performs in Kochi City yearly. Maybe, I need to stop dreaming of doing and just do it! If you want to learn how you can join a dance group or to start your own, contact the Kochi Prefecture Information Center and they can guide you in the right direction. https://visitkochijapan.com/en/see-and-do/10021