Festivals & Events
Shonai Kagura 庄内神楽
Demons, maidens, and a traditional local dance with lively music to give thanks to the gods
The Shonai Kagura is a traditional dance performed regularly in the town of Shonai, Oita . The yearly Shonai Festival began in 1990 and is held on November 3.
- The sound of whistles and drums played in fast, lively rhythm by 12 groups
- Sacred dances called Fukayama-ryu kagura and Inuyama-ryu kagura, performed by one of two kagura schools, Shonai and Asono
- Experiencing the local culture with people taking part in the festival
How to Get There
You can get to the festival by train and then a short taxi ride.
Demons, maidens, flutes, and drums
This festive dance has been practiced for more than 200 years. It is thought to have begun in 1778 as an offering from the local shrine priests to the gods. There are many performances by the 12 kagura groups, and schoolchildren also participate.
Kagura is a dance that tells stories. There are many different kinds of kagura throughout Japan, with Shonai Kagura being one of its most famous.