It's time to enjoy Bon dance now.
Bon is Japanese Buddhist custom to honor the spirits of one's ancestors. This Buddhist-Confucian custom has evolved into a family reunion holiday during which people return to ancestral family places and visit and clean their ancestors' graves, and when the spirits of ancestors are supposed to revisit the household altars. It has been celebrated in Japan for more than 500 years and traditionally includes a dance, known as Bon-Odori.(quoted from Wikipedia)
Bon is celebrated mostly from August 13 to 16 or July 13 to 16 in some areas, and Bon dance festival is held around this time of year, July and August.
Bon dance used to have a ritualistic meaning in the beginning, but nowadays it turns to be more casual, more enjoyable dance for people.
There are many Bon dance lovers in Osaka including my friends.
We all start to get excited as Summer comes.
I started my Bon dance season at Misono Universe on July 31.
Right, the day before our dance recital in Osaka. The very same place.
They had an event "Tropical Paradise" on that day and there were many other fun acts.
Here please enjoy some photos of the performance by Mr. Tamanosuke HORAIYA.
What a thrilling show!
He performed the traditional lion dance (upper right). This lion is a symbolic item which cut loose people from evil ties and it did. We are all purified and clean now!
The performer who had the honor of closing this big event was Mr. Kikusuimaru KAWCHIYA.
As he appeared on the stage, the audience, most of them were Bon dance lovers, all went crazy and started dancing!
I made a quick escape from that overheatedness. It was such a fanatic dance drill and too though for me.
With my friends with big smiles who finish that tough drill till the end.
A week later, on August 8, to make a fresh start, I visited Kawaraya-machi playing field for a big Bon dance festival of Chuo-ku.
Can you see a tower like Osaka castle? It's the highlight of this festival.
A singer come up to the top and people would dance along with his live song.
In order to soak deeply in the festival, I have all my belongings with me this time.
Salt tablet, money, key and Pitapa card goes in this small pouch with long shoestring strap and dangle it from my neck.
Other things like towel, folding fan and bottle of tea would tucked in Yukata and Obi!
I'm not encouraging you to do the same for the bottle of tea, because it might make your Yukata look messy and not decent...
At this field, you can enjoy not only Kawachi-Ondo, but many other folk songs as well like Osaka-Ondo, Goshu-Ondo, Yagi-Bushi, Horie-Bon-Uta, etc...
Done! Completed all!
Bon dance, it's so much fun! Why don't you join us dancing in some fields?
Even if you don't know how, once you join in the circle of the dance, nearby elders would kindly tell you it, I promise!