Welcome again to JJNN for Tuesday July 22nd, 2008. Today is entertainment day.
I won't keep you in the dark about today's news story. Today I will be talking about shadow art (man that was bad). The original story can be found here. A city in central Japan called Gero city built the first place in all of Japan were people can come and see shadow art. The name of the place is Gero-onsen-gasshou-mura. That is a mouthful so I will just tell you the gist of the name. I means the Gero spa prayer village. Now, this doesn't actually have anything to do with prayer, it is just a weird name for a place.
The point of this new place is to let the locals and anyone else that wants to visit know more about the area. They will use shadow art to tell the stories that have been passed down in the area. They will also be educating everyone about other famous places in the area. I am thinking this would be a good place to take elementary school students for a filed trip. Below you can see a picture of some of the shadow artists at work (I think those are foxes).
The group that is going to be putting on the performances is called Kakashi-za. They are fairly well known in Japan it seems. Take a look at some of the stuff they can do.
This next clip is from a music video. It takes a little while before the shadows come up, but when they do come up it looks good.
The shadow art shown in the two clips is a little bit different from the art that can be seen in Gero city. The two clips are more for entertainment value than anything else, but the art at Gero city is part of a story they want to hand down to the next generation. People have to go to great lengths to hand down culture now days.
Any way, it is now time for the word of the day. Today's word is 影絵(かげえ). It is pronounced kage-e and means shadow art. I think the only shadow I can make is a bunny, and even that looks a little bit sickly.
That's it for today. See you next time at JJNN.