Official Website of Misuzu Yoshimura, Master of the Kamigata-mai Yoshimura School, Nihon-buyo (a Japanese traditional dance from Kyoto and Osaka)
Hello, my name is Misuzu Yoshimura. I created this website to give more information about Jiuta-mai, in the hope that you will enjoy learning more about it.
I will post my performance and lesson schedule, and also share about the various fascinating aspects of Jiuta-mai and Kamigata-mai.
Please feel free to visit my website from time to time.
Master of the Kamigata-mai Yoshimura School
Born in Kumamoto City, in Kyushu, Japan, Misuzu Yoshimura entered a Nihon-buyo (Japanese Traditional Dance) school at the age of three.
She studied Jiuta-mai and Kamigata-mai under Kisho Yoshimura, the sixth generational Head of the Yoshimura School. Now she holds a Master’s License from the School.
Since 2000, she has been giving performances in various places throughout Europe, such as France, Switzerland, Poland, the Netherlands, Belgium, etc. In 2011, she performed “Kodojo-ji” at the United Nations European Headquarters in Palais des Nations, Geneva.
What is Jiutamai(kamoigatamai)?
Jiutamai is one of the traditional dances accompanied by jiuta(old songs in the Kyoto and Osaka area sung to the accompaniment of their own shamisen or koto). Not only jiuta but also many kinds of music like kamigatauta , icchubushi, tokiwazu, nagauta are used as accompaniment to jiutamai. It is called zashikimai because it was danced in a zashiki (a Japanese-style drawing room) of the Imperial Palace or a tea-ceremony house in the Edo era.
Jiutamai is mainly danced alone with a sensu(folding fan), which symbolically expresses many kinds of things from a stick and a candlestick to a natural phenomenon. Turning the body is the main movement. And it is elegant and quiet with beauty, handling a folding fan technically and sometimes jumping. It reveals the psychological portrait with a refined and controlled expression.
Yoshimura School’s dance pieces are divided into some types: hongyomono which is from noh theater, tsuyamono which is about affection of a man and woman, sakumono which is a kind of comedy, and so on. Among many jiutamai(kamigatamai) schools, Yoshimura School ,Umemoto School, Yamamura School and Inoue School are called Kamigatayonryu, the four main schools of kamigatamai.
The founder of Yoshimura School is Yamanouchi Fuku, who was one of okyogenshi, dance instructors for ladies of Imperial Court in Kyoto.
She was famous for sophisticated and refined choreography. Her pupil, Yoshimura Fuji, the first head of Yoshimura School, moved to Osaka, and played a significant role in dance performing arts.
The second head, Yoshimura Yuu, the third head, Yoshimura Yuukou preserved the refined older traditional dance. Their dances were very charming and beautiful. After World War Ⅱ, the fourth head, Yoshimura Yuuki advanced to Tokyo, accepting the invitation from Hanayagi Shoutaro, a famous actor of the Shinpa, a new school of theater. Since then the word, Kamigatamai has been used for this traditional style of dances.
The fourth head Yoshimura Yuuki revived many old dances. He also enthusiastically created new dances. He strove to popularize kamigatamai nationwide as a legitimate form of performing arts, and he received many awards.
Yoshimura School is based on the arts of ‘shimai’ which is an informal dance in Japanese noh theater. It incorporates various traditional performances like ‘utai’ (a noh chanting), Mibukyohgen (noh farce performed in Mibu Temple), ningyo-joruri (a Japanese puppet drama) to name a few. Yoshimura School has progressed to being characterized by its elegant and traditional choreography, and its minutely detailed composition.
The sixth head Yoshimura Kisho lived in the fourth’s house as a pupil for a long time. He inherited the traditional techniques, like all movements from head to toes, breath control and eye movement. Introduction of Jiutamai(Kamigatamai)
Reference: ”General Incorporated Institution The Kamigata-mai Yoshimura School Official Website”
Location: Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Frequency: three lessons per month
All lessons are private, so beginners can learn comfortably at their own pace. For higher-level students, I adjust the instruction according to the level of each student.
For further details about lessons, please contact me (in Japanese or in English) through the contact form below. I will reply with information about the exact lesson location and monthly tuition fee.
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