Eisa 2014

Young men play big drums
Big drummers performs on an alley at night

Nishibaru Youth Association dances Eisa during Bon Festival.
旧盆の最終日(ウークイ)にエイサーを踊るにしばる青年会

The last weekend was Bon festival here in Okinawa.

It is one of the most important family events in the year in Okinawa and more widely practiced than in the rest of Japan. Another thing that makes Okinawa’s Bon unique is Eisa dance.

During the three-day bon festival, local youth groups around the Okinawa island dance Eisa through their communities. Some groups march through the streets until late night with the sound of drums and sanshin, and local residents stay awake to see their community’s young men and women to come by their houses to dance no matter how late it would be.

It’s a special time of the year for Okinawans.

big drummers play drumms and dance around the puppeteer

先週末は、沖縄の旧盆だった。
お盆の行事は、新暦に行われる本土のものよりその伝統が色濃く残っており、とても大事にされ、ウークイ、ナカヌヒ、ウンケーと3日間、各家庭で盛大に行われる。

また、沖縄でお盆といえば、各地域で行われるエイサーである。地域の青年会がエイサーを踊りながら地域を回る道ジュネーは、夕方から夜遅くまで行われる。写真のにしばる青年会は、連日日付が変わるころまで地域を回り、ウンケーの日に終了したのは朝の2時だった。しかし、地域の人々はどんなに遅くなってもエイサーが近くに来るのを待っていたのが印象的であった。

Eisa puppeteer holding the team flag blows a finger flute

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