The unique feature of the Hikiyama Festival is that performances of kabuki are performed by children, a rarity in Japan. There are 12 kabuki floats called hikiyama with a kabuki stage. Groups of kabuki floats appear in Nagahama’s main festival each year. Yet the performances are usually excellent with the usual Japanese sense of care, professionalism, and putting a huge community and group effort into the productions. Nagahama Hikiyama Matsuri was inscribed as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as one of the 33 Yama Hoo and Yatai Float Festivals in Japan.
- ©John Lander
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