Ryoishi Toramai Preservation Society

Kamaishi City,Iwate

Ryoishi Toramai is said to have originated in the mid-Edo period as a prayer for a safe voyage and bountiful catch. Although the entire region suffered significant damage from multiple tsunamis and many valuable records were lost, the dance form has been passed down without alteration to this day.
It is primarily performed during the Ryoishi Festival (regularly held at Itsukushima Shrine) and other events in Ryoishi Town.
The distinctive features of Ryoishi Toramai include the movements of the tiger head, footwork, and the interchange of dancers during the performance. The accompanying music, such as the sounds of the taiko drums, the tones of the clear flute, and hand cymbals along with shouts (“dome”) harmonize with the dancers as they vigorously swing the tiger heads, while their footwork resembles the stomping of sumo wrestlers.