Nakano Nanazumai Preservation Society

Iwaizumi Town, Iwate

Nakano Nanazumai is a folk performance art handed down in the Omoto Nakano district of Iwaizumi Town. It is said to have origins dating back to the 1840’s , when Kitaro Kudo, who was called Kagura Tayu ”Master of Kagura Sacred Dance” at the time, created it by using the beginning portion of a kagura dance as its basic inspiration. The performers include 7 pairs of dancers doing 7 different dance segments that are named Dogu-tori, Yoko-hane, Chirashi, Tatakai, Tsuttōtsu, Sansoku “Torii-gakari”, and Dogu-osame. At the time, these were performed as kagura sacred dances, but as times changed, they became integrated into the village festival. Nakano Nanazumai is a gallant and lively dance entreating an abundant harvest, big catches in the sea and the general safety of the village. The strong and graceful dance imagines the hard work of preparing new fields, then raising precious crops, and finally thankfully celebrating that year’s harvest all together with fellow villagers.