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Gyoda City , Saitama Related category:
Nagano Sasara Shishimai (The Nagano Sasara Lion Dance) Wakakodama no Shishimai (The Wakakodama Lion Dance)    



Digest: 3 minutes
Entire story: 170 minutes
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Nagano Sasara Shishimai is associated with the Nagano district of Gyda. It is believed that the origin of this lion dance dates back to 1713, when it was performed at the festival of Hisaizu Shrine, the sochinju (local Shinto deity) of Nagano village at that time. Now, the lion dance is performed on the closest Saturday and Sunday to September 18th and 19th. The dance consists of three lions ; Hgan, Nakajishi (the female lion) and Atojishi. In addition, Menka leads the parade as a clown and guide.
At Hisaizu Shrine, sasagakai are performed, while at Chokyuji (Chokyu temple), kanemaki takes place. After that, some lion dances such as Hanawari and Kanemaki are performed at other local venues. Each performance is quite long.
Wakakodama no Shishimai comes from Wakakodama districrt. The origin of this lion dance is said to date back to 1814, when it was dedicated at the grand festival in Suguro Shrine, the sochinju (local Shinto deity) of the village at that time. As with Nagano district, the lion dance consists of three lions Hgan, Nakajishi and Mejishi(the female lion) and Menka. The Wakakodama version differs from the Nagano district one only in that it does without the two additional roles, Chiihyara Okame, a character wearing a plain-looking woman mask and Hyottoko, a character wearing a clownish male mask

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