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A photo from a performance of a Noh Theatre piece. A masked actor stands centre stage while several musicians sit behind him upstage.

Daily Helping for June 26th, 2023 – Noh Theatre – Funa Benkei

Last year I wrote about Noh Theatre as part of my deep dive into Kabuki Theatre. This year I had the opportunity to visit the Noh Museum in Kanazawa, Japan, where I had the good fortune of going on a private tour given by one of the city’s official tour guides. When I say that my trip to Japan was a magical experience, this is what I’m talking about.

It should come as no surprise that I loved everything about my visit to this museum. I loved my tour, and I especially loved seeing the masks, costumes, and set pieces up close. But most of all I loved that I was able to see a recording of a performance of Funa Benkei, a Noh play dating back to the 15th century. My guide was able to translate what was happening onscreen, and while it wasn’t the same as watching a live performance, it was most definitely the next best thing.

Unfortunately, much like the geisha performances, my schedule didn’t line up to attend a Noh Theatre performance while I was in town. Thankfully the museum provided a wonderful alternative. I suppose I now have yet another reason to return to Kanazawa in the near future. Can’t wait!

Suggestions for artists I should check out? Please contact me with your ideas. I hope you enjoyed your daily helping of art!