Miyajima Bugaku Miyajima Noh
shrine is built on the sea. It is the Heike clan’s attempt to create
Ryugujo (dragon palace castle, a paradise in the sea), in this world. If
you are not one belonging to the Heike you are not human – so the
Heike boasted once. But their prosperity vanished. The battle of
Dannoura (1185), which is located around Kanmon Channel close to this
shrine, is well known as the Heike’s last stand against the Genji.
Realising the inevitable end the leader of the Heike began to clean the
boat by throwing away everything into the sea and drowned himself by
putting dual suits of armour on him. Following him all the noble women
threw themselves into the sea including the Emperor Antoku, who was only
eight years old then. It is said all over the sea was coloured with
beautiful kimonos of such poor women that looked like a painting in
are numerous stories and legends on the Heike’s fleeing soldiers or
drop-out soldiers (ochiudo) across
which had been carried down by biwa hoshi (Japanese lute playing
minstrels) over centuries. You will be surprised a variety of people
living in broadly scattered areas claim that they are descendants of the
traditional Bugaku, ancient musical court dance has been handed down
through the generations from the days of the Heike clan. Gagaku (elegant
is the oldest type
of Japanese traditional
When gagaku is an accompaniment for the dance, it is called bugaku,
ten centuries back the Heike clan must have watched the bugaku on the
very stage of
left side dance (Chinese), uses red coloured costumes, and Uhomai,
the right side dance (Korean), green coloured.
drama stage (butai) of
is the only stage in the whole country that uniquely rests upon the sea.
Normally the area under any Noh
butai is hollow and buckets of water are placed beneath the stage to
provide proper resonance for the dancers' stamping feet. Here
at Miyajima, as the tide becomes higher the
stage lies over water.
actors use the treasured shrine costumes.
Copyright (C) : Kari Gröhn
All rights reserved.