Tokyobling's Blog

Akita Kanto Festival Performance – Furusato Matsuri

Posted in Japanese Traditions, People, Places by tokyobling on January 19, 2013

Every year in August up in Japan’s northern Akita prefecture there is the traditional Aktia Kanto Festival, a harvest festival that uses long bamboo poles with painted lanterns in amazing balancing acts! The poles and lanterns (that are lit at night) weigh about 50kg each, but of course there are even heavier, I have heard of some that weigh about 80kg! These are held in one arm, or balanced on any part of your body that you can think of, and carried in parades. As part of their tourism drive, a team of festival performers travel to Tokyo a few times a year, so although I have never been to Akita I have seen performances of this festival a few times. I took these photos at last year’s Furusato Matsuri at Tokyo Dome, a huge baseball stadium between Korakuen and Suidobashi stations. If you have free time in Tokyo today I recommend visiting the event where you can sample food and drinks and festivals from all over Japan in one handy spot! The daytime tickets are probably nearly sold out now, but the night time tickets are even cheaper, so even on a budget it shouldn’t be too expensive. I’ll post more photos of this amazing festival later on, but please excuse the poor photos, I was using a 50-500mm “Bigma” Sigma, the original widow maker and back breaker tele zoom lens. Absolutely not suitable for indoor photography!














7 Responses

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  1. amadl said, on January 20, 2013 at 6:55 am

    I’ve seen a Live ‘performance’ of this, it was nerve wrackingLy terrific!


    • tokyobling said, on February 1, 2013 at 3:00 pm

      Isn’t it? I always expect it all to topple over the next instant… or the bamboo pole to crack! (^-^;)


      • amadl said, on February 1, 2013 at 3:14 pm

        LoL I did that too! You just can’t heLp it, I guess.. But LuckiLy none of them happen *phew*


  2. Amy said, on January 21, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    That is so impressive! Thank you for sharing!


  3. Timi said, on January 22, 2013 at 9:19 pm

    Oh wow, I would love to see this live 😮 They are amazing, and it looks like as if they hold a pen or something 😐


    • tokyobling said, on February 1, 2013 at 3:06 pm

      If a pen was 50kg of bamboo and paper! (^-^;) I wish I was this strong…!


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