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  • Gagaku Performance: Urayasu No Mai

Gagaku Performance: Urayasu No Mai

  • 27 Apr 2018
  • 1:00 PM
  • Boston Higashi School, 800 North Main Street, Randolph, MA 02368

Gagaku Performance

Friday, April 27, 2018 from 1PM
Boston Higashi School
800 North Main Street, Randolph, MA 02368

Performers from Japan are coming to the Boston Higashi School to share a Gagaku performance of  “Urayasu No Mai.” This dance piece was composed in 1940 to commemorate Japan’s 2600th anniversary of its founding. It is a very new composition in the history of gagaku, and is based on a poem written by Emperor Showa (1901-1989).


            The poem reads:

            Ame tsuchi No Kami Nizo Inoru Asanagi No

            Umi No Gotoku Ni Nami Tatanu Yo Wo.

             (I pray to God, creator of the universe for a peaceful world –

            a world like the calm morning sea.)

The poem was set to music by Tadatomo Ohno, then court conductor of the Imperial Household Agency’s Music Department, who also worked on the choreography.

From ancient times, Japan has been referred to as Urayasu no Kuni, which means “the land of natural beauty, where serenity reigns.” Here, urayasu means “peaceful mind,” and mai means “dance.”

There are two types of mai in this dance: Ōgi no mai, which uses fans, and Suzu no mai, which uses bells as props. These are solemn, graceful dances with a gentle rhythm.

There will be a reception following the performance.


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