Kitsunemai, fox dancing, appeared in the old Edo (today’s Tokyo), in the district of Yoshiwara. The performances were part of New Year’s celebrations, to emphasize the importance of winter and honor the coming of the new year. It has been associated with New Year’s Eve celebrations ever since.
Yoshiwara Kitsune are easy to recognize in their bright kimono and nô fox masks. A fan in one hand and a little bell in the other, the dancers enchant their audience.
Though it had almost vanished for many years, the dance has been brought back to life by the Yoshiwara Kitsune Shachu troupe since 2011. They perform over 40 times a year in shrines, at weddings, in embassies, or at festivals. Yoshiwara Kitsune Shachu perform to the music of Japanese flutes, taiko (drums) or kane kettledrums.
Don’t miss Yoshiwara Kitsune Shachu’s show on the Sakura stage and give in to its enchanting rhythms.