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Ishigami Bangaku

Location: Ishigami, Obonai, Tazawako, Semboku
Site(s) of performance: Kakehi Shrine and Ishigami Community Hall
Date(s): August 14 and the Saturday closest to November 9
Designation: City-Designated Intangible Folkloric Cultural Property
Category: Shishimai and Bangaku
According to legends, Ishigami Bangaku was brought here to the family of Taguchi Jinkichi, by some of the survivors of the Minamoto family after the suicide of Minamoto Yoshitsune in 1189, whose victory in the Genpei War (1180–1185) turned to tragedy. There was a written record on its origin that was unfortunately lost in a flood in 1896. Ishigami Bangaku consists mostly of a warrior dance, including many stories from the Genpei War and the exploits of Minamoto Yoshitsune and his faithful follower Benkei. Some dances are danced with masks and others without masks. Music is played with big drums as well as Japanese flutes and hand gongs. Most dance numbers are accompanied by chants.

About Shishimai and Bangaku