The Egret Dancers of Japan

egret

For about 500 years, liturgical dancers in Japan have imitated the movements and appearance of the white egret. The blogger behind Tokyobling was present at one such performance:

These days the ritualized dance called sagimai (鷺舞) takes place in a handful of places around Japan, with slight variations. It is probably one of the most spectacular ritual dances in Japan today. I came across this performance in Asakusa on the morning of the great Jidai Matsuri (festival of the ages) where they had an unannounced performance right in front of the temple. It was hugely crowded and the only thing I could do to get a decent shot was to use a zoom lens from quite a distance, it was too crowded to get anywhere near the dancers at street level, so unfortunately I can’t show you just how cool the look when they mimic the birds and the move in a synchronized group.

Link -via Lustik | Video of the Dance | Photo: Tokyobling


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