Nohgaku Workshop for International and Japanese Students
International Student Center opened Nohgaku (Noh and Kyogen Japanese traditional performing art) Workshop for international and Japanese students at Yanagido-kaikan Hall in conjunction with the Gifu University Head Office for Glocalization (GHOGL) on July 19, 2017. Around 60 people participated in the workshop including the summer school students, international and Japanese students, teaching and administrative staff of Gifu University.
Mr. Madoka Mikaka and Mr. Hiromichi Tamoi who perform Noh dramas as main actors called "Shite" in Kanze School*1, and Mr. Kodo Yamaguchi and Mr. Yoshinobu Shigeyama, both of whom are Kyogen drama performers in Okura School*2, were invited to the workshop as instructors.
First, the instructors played one of the representative Noh drama called "Shakkyo." After the performance, they made self-introduction and talked about the history and performances of Noh and Kyogen, as well as big differences between serious Noh plays and comic Kyogen plays.
When the instructors showed five masks of Noh and Kyogen, the audience was surprised by big differences in facial expressions of those masks depending on which angles people see.
The students and other participants practiced how to laugh loudest in Kyogen and chanted "Takasago." They seemed refreshed after giving one of the loudest laughters in their lives. In "Neongyoku" in Kyogen, people's chuckles gradually grew into a huge laughter and reverberated throughout the entire Hall. All participants were given a rare opportunity to experience the Japanese traditional culture firsthand and throughout their bodies.
At the end of the workshop, the instructors helped a summer school student put on two types of traditional Noh kimono. One was a formal, gorgeous kimono for Noh plays. The student appeared on stage wearing the kimono and a special wig. The other kimono represented a menacing demon.
This Nohgaku Workshop of Gifu University offers an invaluable opportunity for people to watch one of the time-honored Japanese cultural activities under the instructions of professional performers.
Media outlets such as CCN Cable TV, Gifu Shimbun Newspaper and Chunichi Shimbun newspaper company reporters interviewed some students in attendance.
The International Student Center and GHOGL continue to hold a number of programs for Japanese culture and traditions and disseminate their attractions both on and off campus in the days to come.
*1: There are five "Shite" schools in Noh: Kanze, Hosho, Kanparu, Kongo and Kita.
*2: There are two schools in Kyogen: Okura and Izumi.
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