Summer Dance

Obon Odori is held in many local places in late summer, an if you are in Tokyo, do catch the dance in Nippori, Tokyo on September 21-22 with the Coal Miners Dance. Check out Nippori Yume Donya for the schedule.

So, why do young guys in Malaysia dance the Obon Odori? "Girls, pretty girls in kimono!"

Meanwhile in Seattle:

Meanwhile in San Diego:
The Bon Odori continued into the night for a total of 20 dances, including “Bon Odori Uta,” “Tohoku Ondo,” “Ichi Tasu Ichi (One Plus One) Ondo,” “Tanko Bushi,” “Sakura Kappore,” “Memanbetsu Bayashi,” “Shiawase Samba,” “Mottainai,” and a Japanese version of “Beautiful Sunday."

Meanwhile in Argentina:

Yo voy a seguir subiendo videos :) asi q si quieren miren en mi usuario ^^ me alegro q les haya gustado, la verdad s q fue una noche muy linda :D saludos :) 

Meanhile in London, UK:

Meanwhile in Malaysia:
Date: 20th July 2013
Time: 6.00pm- 11.00pm
Organizer: The Consulate-General of Japan, Penang State Tourism Development & Culture office and Bon Odori Organizing committee
Tel: 04-6505136
A traditional and merry Japanese festival that is celebrated with dance and lively drum performances to welcome the homecoming of ancestral spirits.
This festival is a Japanese Buddhist observance that honours the spirit of ancestors, who return once a year to visit their families.
The carnival-like atmosphere at Esplanade is made ever merrier with stalls selling a variety of local and Japanese food, firework displays, Japanese souvenirs, lively performances and games.


Bon Odori festival honors ancestors, celebrates Japanese tradition in Westport

Updated 1:42 pm, Monday, August 12, 2013
  • The Japan Society of Fairfield County hosts a Bon Odori Festival at Jesup Green in Westport on Saturday, Aug. 17. A taiko drum group from the University of Connecticut performed at the festival last year. Photo: Todd Tracy / Westport News contributed
    The Japan Society of Fairfield County hosts a Bon Odori Festival at Jesup Green in Westport on Saturday, Aug. 17. A taiko drum group from the University of Connecticut performed at the festival last year. Photo: Todd Tracy

For the last five years, Junko Burns has been keeping the beat of tradition.
Burns, of Westport, is a member of New York Taiko Aiko Kai, a Japanese drumming ensemble that aims
to impart Japanese culture to present and future
"We want (our children) to understand where they come from," Burns, a mother of two, said. "Japan has hundreds of years of history."
She also believes the Japanese way of life has something to offer the average American: a sense of community.
"Every Sunday, we all come together to practice," she said of the group. "Our members come from all walks of life. It doesn't matter who you are."
It is in the spirit of inclusiveness and cultural preservation that Bon Odori -- a celebration that takes place in Westport on Saturday, Aug. 17 -- is held.
Hosted by the Japan Society of Fairfield County, Connecticut's take on Japan's biggest summer festival features folk dancing, bamboo stalk decorating, origami, water yo-yo, Japanese fashion and drumming by New York Taiko Aiko Kai.
Revelers don an array of Japanese fashions -- from the yukata (traditional summer kimono) to the happi coat (short kimono-style top) to other ceremonial outfits -- as they recreate scenes that unfold in hundreds of Japanese villages each August. Bon refers to the Japanese Buddhist custom of honoring the spirits of one's ancestors. The custom has evolved into a family reunion holiday in which people return to their ancestral homes and visit and clean their ancestors' graves. It has been celebrated in Japan for more than 500 years.
Vernon Beck, president of the Japan Society of Fairfield County, said the festival is "in many ways similar, fundamentally, to the celebrations of other cultures.
"It's much the same thing we do on Veterans or Memorial Day," added Beck, of Ridgefield. "Many people remember their ancestors. Look at any culture and you'll find that to be true."
The difference, of course, is "the Japanese twist."
The festival's most unique and attention-grabbing spectacle is the Taiko drums, which, on the day of Bon Odori, can be heard echoing throughout downtown Westport. At Bon Odori, the alternating rhythms and tones of the booming cylinders are used to honor the dead.
"It's very spiritual," Burns said.
It's also a lot of fun as Burns' son, 10-year-old Samuel, has learned. New York Taiko Aiko Kai is very much a family affair; it began in 2002 when Japanese parents at a Manhattan public school took up Taiko "with a hope to pass Japanese culture to their children," according to the group's website.
The way Burns sees it, with each bang of the Taiko, Samuel taps into his cultural identity and, in turn, keeps the beat of tradition going until the next generation arrives.


Pandabonium said…
Nice post. In Hawaii we have many Bon Odori as there are many temples founded by immigrants of various sects and from various cities around Japan.

Wonderful way to thank those who came before us and a good place for guys and gals to meet as well!

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