Known for its simple and lighthearted form, the traditional Japanese dance Awa Odori dates back more than 400 years, beginning as a freeform dance and chant to honor ancestors. Although this group dance originates from the rural Tokushima region, it is now widely performed around Japan competitively and recreationally. In early August, people of all ages gather to dance “the fool’s dance” at Awa festivals across the country.

Learn about the history, customs and transformation of the Awa Odori dance and festival. The lecture will end with an easy, fun tutorial. As the Awa Odori saying goes, “The dancing fool and the watching fool are both fools, so why not dance?”

This is a FREE event. Pre-registration is suggested.

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About our presenter:

Erin Sonneveldt, Ph.D.Erin Sonneveldt, Ph.D., is director of Insitutional Research and Assessment at North Central Michigan College. She spent a year living in Tokushima, Japan, and has visited several times since, each time learning about and enjoying Awa Odori.