Noh, kabuki, and bunraku are representative
of Japanese classical art. They are called
"Gakugeki", meaning "music dramas", because
they contain elements of both music and plays.
The three art forms have acquired a world
wide recognition for their high artistic
The Kansai Gakugeki Festival Association
has organized this "Kamigata Renaissance
Gakugeki Festival". Our purpose is to reconsider
traditional value as well as artistic appeal
in Noh, Kabuki and Bunraku to wider global
audience. In this light, we aim to further
develop Japanese classical art for future
The 21st century is a propitious time
at which to hold a festival centering on
the three main music dramas. We wish to
appreciate once again their classical value
and realize a global appeal for today's audiencea.
By reviving classical art and creating new
art forms today, we are to revitalize society
through the energy of artistic movement.
Through such cultural excitement, can we
restore the Kansai area's influence on society
and revitalize whole Japanese society?
"Gakugeki Festival (music drama festival)"
is held in various locations in the Kansai
area. The reason for selecting the venues
is that all of the three main music dramas
originated in Kansai. To be more specific,
Nohgaku (Noh music) started from sarugaku
of medieval times, which is associated with
the holy rituals of the Nara Kasuga shrine
and Kohuku temple. The origin of Kabuki
is that Izumo No Okuni performed in Kamo-riverbank of Kyoto in 1603, the beginning of
modern times. Bunraku started from Gidayu
Ningyo Joruri, which was established as a
performance by TAKEMOTO Gidayu, CHIKAMATSU
Monzaemon and TAKEDA Izumo in Dotonbori of
Osaka in the Genroku period.
We wish to review these performing arts in
their original birthplace, the Kansai area,
utilizing its many advantages. The festival
also encourages the creation of modern music
dramas, while acknowledging their origins.
We hope that a great many people will attend
the performances of "Gakugeki Festival" and
participate in the events with us, sharing
interests and perspective. Through such
participation, we hope to expand our thoughts
in Classical perfroming art. Welcome to
the festival, and we hope you will join and
enjoy the events.