Super Yosakoi Weekend

If ever you’re down Harajuku way on the last weekend of August, be sure to see the Super Yosakoi dance festival. What started in Kochi in 1954 has spread across Japan and is now a highly competitive genre of dance. It booms energy, brilliantly coloured costumes and a level of awesomeness beyond religion. The traditional dance movements combined with modern music make it a spectacle you will probably never be so dumfounded by in your life. Yosakoi means ‘come at night’ though these dances are generally in the daytime.

Men, women and children perform in costumes based on historical attire, popular fashions, or ethnic fashions. Each dancer holds the naruko (or wooden clappers) originally used in Kōchi Prefecture to scare birds away from rice fields. The teams come from different prefectures in Japan and has a limit of 150 participants for each group. There are 200 yosakoi festivals and competitions across Japan.

In Tokyo the Super Yosakoi dance festival is in the Omotesando, Harujuku and Meiji Jingumae areas.

Author of this article

Gabrielle Ewart

Gabrielle is from London and has been living in Tokyo for 3 years.  Her recent foray into blogging has been a chance to find a place to put photos in case of an emergency and do some seriously fun research.  Tokyo is a continuous source of inspiration, every corner you turn there is something intriguing.  For street, amateur and professional photographers Tokyo is infinite.  She is about to publish her children's books on Kindle Fire under her pseudonym, Isis Ixworth.  Check out her writings at, and

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