Thursday, June 18, 2015
Yosakoi Soran 2015 in Sapporo
Every year we have a "yosakoi" festival in Sapporo. Yosakoi means team dancing in colorful outfits. Teams are usually made up of 100 to 200 dancers, who all do synchronized team dancing to techno versions of old Japanese folk songs.
This festival is now very popular, so hundreds of teams participate. This means that you cannot get a hotel room during the week this festival happens unless you book well in advance. It also means that Sapporo is full of people coming only for the festival, and since the festival also blocks off several of the main streets in Sapporo, citizens who are not interested in yosakoi find the festival very irritating. It is difficult to get anywhere, and all the restaurants are full etc. So most citizens stay at home as much as possible during these days.
I like watching the dancing, though. Some of the teams are really fun. I recently met a girl who used to dance for one of the famous teams (the team that won this year) and when she and one woman who loves watching yosakoi started talking, I was lost immediately. Apparently the "professional" yosakoi fans look at very different details that I do, haha.