Fukuda Lion Dance
Location: Fukuda, Kita-Akita City
Site(s) of performance: Fukuda Inari Shrine and Fukuda Shishimai Hall
Date(s): August 14
This shishimai (lion dance) seems to belong to the School of Ise Dai-Kagura. The role of one lion is performed by two people. Around 1805, a villager learned the kagura at the town of Noshiro, where it had been brought from the Kyoto area by sea and river. The numbers include the Introductory Dance, Earth Dance, Exorcism Dance, Lady Dance, and Tornado Dance. What is characteristic of the dance here is that in the Introductory Dance, the player of sasara (a wooden percussion instrument played with a rubbing stick) comes out of the body of the lion as if he were being born from it. The sasara player has a comical appearance, with his head and cheeks covered with a hand towel, and jumps around the lion while creating scrubbing sounds with the sasara instrument.