On October 7, ASIJ’s Japan Center had the pleasure and honor of having Hanayagi Nihon Buyo Masters Hanayagi Noriyuki and Hanayagi Kinchiyo visit the elementary school. Nihon Buyo is a traditional Japanese performance from the Edo period. It incorporates the use of dance and pantomime for entertainment purposes.
Hanayagi Noriyuki was born in Tokyo as the grandson of the late Hanayagi Juraku II, who was one of the two living national treasures in Nihon Buyo. He developed his own distinctive style, which, along with being highly praised, has represented Nihon Buyo as well as all other Japanese performing arts. Noriyuki began learning from his grandfather at 4 years old. Hanayagi is currently the largest school of Nihon Buyo with over 20,000 master practitioners.
Noriyuki and Kinchiyo gave three performances each to grades 1-5. Supporting the Japan Center’s mission of onko-chishin – developing new ideas by understanding the past – this presentation aimed for the students to be immersed in this rich Japanese performing art, use their imaginations in understanding what some of the movements mean and to find the spirit of Japanese omotenashi, the manners we find in modern-day Japan.
The masters were very impressed by some of the amazing questions posed during the Q&A session by our elementary students.