In recognition of the support the people of Atlanta gave to the people of Tohoku in their time of need, and in support of the continued recovery of the Tohoku region, this September the Consulate General of Japan will present two free performances of Iwami Kagura, a dynamic form of ancient Japanese dance renowned for its splendid costumes, amazing special effects, pulsating drum rhythms, and melodic flute.
Iwami Kagura was originally performed by Shinto priests at the yearly autumn festival as a sign of gratitude to the Shinto gods for their help in producing a bountiful harvest. After the Meiji Era (1868-1912), this tradition was handed down from the Shinto priests to the common people, and developed as a traditional folk art performance, known as Kagura. Various types of Kagura have been transmitted throughout Japan, but Iwami Kagura, named for the region in Shimane Prefecture where it originated, remains the most well-known. Iwami Kagura is now widely performed in the region, throughout Japan, and abroad. This performance will be the first time this art form has been showcased in Atlanta.
This tour of Iwami Kagura consists of a group of thirteen performers and musicians from the Iwami Kagura Shinwa-Kai in Masuda City, Shimane Prefecture. Formed in 1975, the Shinwa-kai holds many performances throughout the year and is well respected for its mastery of this ancient, culturally unique art.
This tour of "Iwami Kagura" is sponsored by the Japan Foundation and the Consulate General of Japan and supported by the Center for Puppetry Arts. Further details can be found at the Consulate General of Japan's website at www.atlanta.us.emb-japan.go.jp/kagura.html or by contacting the Consulate at 404-240-4300 or firstname.lastname@example.org.