- June 15th, 2015
[Yosakoi Soran Festival in Sapporo] One of Largest Yosakoi Festivals in Japan That 2 Million Tourists Visit
- Yosakoi Soran Festival
- Odori Park Venue
- List of Activities
- Sapporo One-Day Bus Tours
- Sightseeing Taxi
- Canoe Tour
- Outdoor Activities
- Horse Trekking and Horseback Riding
- Japanese Kimono Rental and Lolita Fashion
- Ninja Experience, Calligraphy Experience and Tea Ceremony Experience
- Pottery Experience and Craft Experience
- Flower Arrangement
- Skiing and Cross-country Skiing
- List of Accommodations
Yosakoi Soran Festival
Yosakoi Soran Festival (YOSAKOIソーラン祭り) in Sapporo is a dance event mixed "Yosakoi Festival (よさこい祭)" in Kochi with a song of the herring fishing "Soran Bushi (ソーラン節 * Folk Tune Interjected as the Refrain of Soran)" familiar to Hokkaido people. Mr. Gaku Hasegawa (長谷川岳) was moved by the vibtrant Yosakoi Festival in the Kochi, and planned and designed the same dance event in the Hokkaido. The event was held for the first time in 1992, and audience was about 20,000. But it becomes a big event that about 2 million tourists visit the Sapporo at present. Open period is early June, and about 300 dance teams dance to win Yosakoi Soran Champion (YOSAKOIソーラン大賞) during 5 days in about 20 venues including Odori Park (大通公園), a main venue, in the Sapporo.
Odori Park (大通公園) is in the very center of Sapporo city, and is located between Sapporo Station and Susukino. Offices and commercial facilities are built around the park, and it is just at very center of the big city. But 92 types 4,700 trees such as lilac, Japanese elm and cherry tree are planted, and fountains and flower beds are built, so the park is well-known as a place of relief for Sapporo citizens as well as tourists. The park has been chosen as one of The 100 Best Roads in Japan (日本の道100選), Japanese City Park Best 100 (日本の都市公園100選), The 100 Best Townscapes (都市景観100選) and Japan's Top 100 Historical Parks (日本の歴史公園100選), so it is one of the most famous parks in Japan. Read More
The Yosakoi Festival that is an origin of the Yosakoi Soran Festival is a dance event held in the Kochi in 1954 to compete against Awa Dance Festival (阿波おどり), one of the 3 major bon dance in Japan, in Tokushima. The Yosakoi means "Come here in the evening" in old Japanese, and uses Yosakoi-bushi (よさこい節), an old folk songa in the Kochi, as a motif. Seicho Yosakoi Naruko Odori (正調よさこい鳴子踊り) designed by 5 major traditional Japanese dance school in the Kochi was unveiled as well as the Awa Dance Festival with the traditional Japanese dance. The Awa Dance Festival has about 400-years history. When I watched the movie below, I felt the dance was very vibtrant.
Mr. Eisaku Takemasa (武政英策), a famous composer, made lyrics and music of the Yosakoi Naruko Odori used in the Yosakoi Festival on the basis of the Yosakoi-bushi. He allowed everybody to arramge the Yosakoi Naruko Odori freely, and suggested dancers have a dance by using a clapper, and those are the origin of the Yosakoi Festival at present. Because the Yosakoi Soran Festival inherited the Yosakoi Festival was a success, various original Yosakoi Festivals are held all over Japan. In addition, localized Yosakoi Festival is held in Ghana, Africa. It is possible that the Yosakoi Festival having high degree of freedom spreads throughout the world.
Sapporo (札幌) that about 1,960,000 people live is the largest city in Hokkaido. Although there are various theories, its origin of the name is "Dry Big River (乾いた大きな川)" in Ainu language. A population of the Sapporo is the 4th largest city after Yokohama, Osaka and Nagoya in japan, and the population accounts for 36 % of Hokkaido's population! So the Sapporo has been flourished as the center of the Hokkaido. The area of the Sapporo is 1,121.26 km2, and is about as big as Hong Kong, and is the 7th largest city in the Hokkaido. The Sapporo is also famous as a tourist city, and about 15 million people come. As for a climate, it is hot that temperature rises to nearly 25 degrees in a summer, but it is easy to live without moisture. I always feel a little cool. It is cold that temperature falls to nearly -10 degrees in a winter, and amount of snowfall sometimes has more than 1 m. Read More
Odori Park Venue
Odori Park Venue is the largest venue in about 20 venues in the Sapporo. Roads from east to west along the Odori park are closed, and the dance teams dance and parade on the roads. A main stage is built at West 8-chome, and the dance teams dance on the stage, and the final is held here. The audiences usually enjoy a dance only from the side because a lot of dance teams dance along the roads. But the audiences can enjoy the dance from the front at the West 8-chome. Admission free. There are charged seats, too. There are public restrooms, but there is no free parking lot. In addition, North Food Park (北のフードパーク) is built, and visitors can savor tasty foods of the Hokkaido. It is crowded with a lot of the visitors.
The features of the Yosakoi Festival is that dancers with elaborating dance clothing and makeup have original designed dances to music by using the clapper. In the case of the parade, an accompanist truck (地方車) is added. A lot of the dances are performed in a colorful manner, and I think that all the dance teams need is standing out. In addition, the systematic dance is required, so the action synchronized with the musice is hilight. Acrobatics dance is performed, too.
According to a rule of the Yosakoi Soran Festival, one dance team (up to 150 people) dances in perfect order. Each dance teams devise ideas to express "Impression and Spirit" of the examination standard by the dance, and aims at the championship. It may be said that the event is Rio's Carnival for the Japan. A lot of oversea people join the event, and it became an international event recently.
Atmosphere of Yosakoi Soran Festival Can Be Watched on Youtube
|Admission fee||Free of charge *There is pay seat|
|Parking lot||A parking is not provided|
|Business hours||10:00-21:30 * Business hours change depending on days|
|Regular closing day||From mid June to early June|
|Home page||Home page is here|
List of Accommodations
Refer to following websites for the accommodations in the Chuo Ward. You can get information regarding online reviews and photos.
A page of Sapporo is here
By the way, Club Tourism (クラブツーリズム), a Japanese tour travel agency, provides various types of tours such as day trip tours or ordinary tours. In the case of bus tours, tourists do not drive their cars themselves, so they can savor alcohol. Choosen tourist attractions are national parks such as Rishiri and Rebun, Shiretoko, and popular tourist places such as Furano and Biei, and some activities such as hiking and fruit picking are also enjoyed depending on seasons. If you are interested in tour trips, you should visit the club tourism's website for details.
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