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Asakusa Awa Odori Festival: Returns After 14-Year Hiatus

Asakusa Awa Odori Festival

Date: 1st Jul, 2023
Time: 6 p.m. and 10:30 p.m
Venue: Asakusa Yokocho & Asakusa Rokku Broadway

A Vibrant and Energetic Dance Festival in Tokyo’s Asakusa Area

Tokyo’s Asakusa district is preparing to host the much-awaited Asakusa Awa Odori Festival on Saturday, July 1st, 2023. The event will take place at Asakusa Yokocho and Asakusa Rokku Broadway. This traditional Japanese dance festival is returning after a 14-year hiatus, bringing back the contagious energy and spirit of Awa Odori to the bustling streets of Tokyo.

The lively Asakusa Awa Odori Festival, one of Tokyo Events in July dance celebrations, takes over the Asakusa area in late July with parades of thousands of dancers moving enthusiastically to traditional Japanese music.

Awa Odori: Buddhist Dance Roots from Shikoku Island

The history of Awa Odori dates back to the 16th century when Tokushima Prefecture was known as Awa. The choreography finds its roots in Buddhist prayer dances from the Kamakura period and kumi-odori, a harvest celebration. Initially created for the “death festival,” a Japanese Buddhist celebration when ancestors’ souls visit the living, Awa Odori has since evolved into a special celebration. Today, it draws approximately 1.5 million tourists each year, becoming Japan’s most popular dance festival.

Exciting Performances and Diverse Group Lineup at Asakusa Awa Odori

The Asakusa edition of Awa Odori promises a spectacular experience with performances by ten dance groups that include professional and local teams. Among them is the Asakusa Thunder Ren team, showcasing their talents and unique interpretation of this traditional dance style.

Visitors can immerse themselves in an electric atmosphere surrounded by stunning traditional costumes and lively music played on instruments like drums, flutes, and shamisen.

Access and Event Details for Asakusa Awa Odori Festival

Visitors can easily access the event venues at Asakusa Rokku Broadway and Asakusa Yokocho via Asakusa Station, which Tobu Skytree Line, Toei Asakusa Line, and Tokyo Metro Ginza Line service. The festivities will occur between 6 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., with downtown Tokushima closed to traffic for the dancing performances.

It is worth noting that accommodation options in the area are limited, so festival attendees should book accommodations early or consider alternative arrangements such as love hotels or renting rooms with residents. To enjoy the entire festival experience, visitors are advised to spend two to three days on-site.

Awa Odori Beyond Shikoku Island: Koenji Awa Odori in Tokyo

The Asakusa version offers a fantastic alternative for those unable to travel to Shikoku Island for the largest and best-known Awa Odori in Tokushima Prefecture. Additionally, a twin festival called Koenji Awa-Odori has been held annually since 1957 in Koenji in Tokyo’s western suburbs (Suginami ward) on the last weekend of August.

In conclusion, this beloved traditional Japanese dance festival is ready to return after its long hiatus. With its spirited performances, captivating music, and colorful costumes, the Asakusa Awa Odori Festival promises an unforgettable experience for locals and visitors on July 1st, 2023.

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