Graceful "Taihei-no-mai" PerformanceGion Festival Naginata Hoko "Kippu-iri" Rites5 July 2015 - Sightseeing/Events
In the Naginata Hoko community of the Gion Festival, the "Kippu-iri" opening ritual was held at the town hall in Shijo-dori Karasumahigashi-iru, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, on July 5. Sodai Naito, the "Chigo," or a sacred child, gave a public performance of the "Taihei-no-mai" dance, which will be performed on the float in the procession held on July 17.
The ritual started at 3:00 p.m., with officers of "Naginata Hoko Hozonkai," the preservation group of the Naginata Hoko float, and its musical accompanists gathering in front of the altar to pray for the safety of the festival. Naito offered the "Kippu," or a special talisman, before the Shinto altar, and then performed the "Taihei-no-mai" dance with Atsufumi Yamashiro and Kazunori Hara who serve as "Kamuro," or child-ministrants. After the board members gave their approval, saying "That's perfect," the three boys lined up at the second floor window of the community hall and danced before the town residents.
Naito performed his role attired in a headdress ornamented with peacock feathers, a long-sleeved, mauve kimono and a pale yellow "Kamishimo" ceremonial dress. While dancing, he leaned far out of the window in time with the Gion Festival music. A crowd of people had gathered in front of the hall and enjoyed the graceful dance performance. Naito said, "I could see my friends. I was happy that many people came and saw our performance."(translated by Galileo, Inc.)