Yosakoi Festival (高知よさこい祭り)

While in Kochi, the Yosakoi Festival was taking place.  This is a fairly new festival, started after WWII and is a modern version of the Tokushima’s Awa Odori (which we’ll be going to in a couple of days).

About 200 teams from around Japan participate and unlike traditional Japanese festivals there are very few rules – one is that the naruko wooded clappers be used and the other that a portion of the original Yosakoi dance music be included.  The lack of rules opens the door for some creative dancing and costumes ranging from traditonal, samba, rock to avant-garde.  However, in many cases the results are disappointing.

The festival takes place from noon to night in various places around central Kochi – one is a shopping arcade that provides shade and a whiff of air conditioning from the stores.  Kochi is hot and humid, no way to avoid dripping in sweat.

Unlike a traditional festival with live taiko drums, flute, and other instruments.  The music is blasted from a tower of speakers mounted on the back of a elaborately decorated truck that leads each team.  In some cases there is a live band or taiko drums being played from a stage mounted on the truck but in many cases it is a soundtrack but with a live singer.  I didn’t care for this.

However there were some really impressive teams.  One was Jyunin-Toiro (十人十彩) – the second team shown in the video clip below.  Another decent team was Obiyamachi (帯屋町筋) that includes Ryoko Hirosue (広末涼子), the first team shown in the clip:

Some random shots:

This entry was posted in Japan, matsuri, Shikoku, travel. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Yosakoi Festival (高知よさこい祭り)

  1. keltrap says:

    This is so cool! I’ve never been to Japan, but I want to go!

  2. Destiation says:

    A happy occasion, I enjoyed reading this article, and ask your permission to quote and preach to my readers about this experience. Of course by placing a link to your blog. Thanks

  3. ちくですが says:


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