Japan Today

Imperial Hotel to host classical dances by geiko and maiko


The Imperial Hotel will host a rare and spectacular show of classical Japanese dances by geiko and maiko - formally educated dancers and entertainers - from Kyoto and geisha from Tokyo, a highly unusual combination of extraordinarily accomplished artists representing some of the nation's most refined schools from its two most respected centers of Japanese dance.

To be staged faithful to traditional presentational practices in The Imperial's vast Peacock Room on the evening of Sunday, July 18, the performances will be followed by a lavish dinner of fine French dishes from The Imperial's kitchens and luscious kaiseki by the world renowned Kitcho, in addition to personal, tableside greetings by the elaborately costumed artists. The review is part of The Imperial's year-long 120th anniversary celebrations and one highlighting the hotel's time-honored Japanese origins.

Kyoto's geiko and maiko to dance at The Imperial are from Gionkobu, the largest "hanamachi" or entertainment district in the old capital, established at the end of the Edo Period. The Gionkobu district geikos’ and maikos' signature dance, the Miyako Odori, hails from the 1872 Exhibition of Arts and Manufactures in Kyoto and has been performed yearly for 140 years thereafter at the Gionkobu's esteemed Kaburenjo theater.

Tokyo's geisha appearing at The Imperial are from the Shimbashi district, an entertainment section of the city of Edo established in the Ansei Era between 1854 and 1860 and by the Meiji Era one of the new country's most active cultural centers.

The Shimbashi Embujo theater opened in 1925 as a venue to practice and perform traditional dance. The Shimbashi geishas performed their signature dance, the Azuma Odori, at the opening of the new Shimbashi Embujo that year.

The Gionkobu geiko and maiko will perform three numbers: "Chiyo no Tomo," "Shakkyou" and "Gion Kouta," the first two of which are iconic "kyomai," or specialty dances of Kyoto, from the legendary Inoue School. The Shimbashi troupe will perform "Seigaiha," "Kiyarikuzushi" and "Sawagi," the latter offered at the 1925 debut of the Shimbashi Embujo.

Aficionados of classical Japanese dance will find the joint performances of Kyoto's Gionkobu geiko and maiko and Tokyo's Shimbashi geisha a highly unusual opportunity to enjoy these two distinctive dance troupes at the same venue at the same time.

The July 18 extravaganza commences in the Peacock Room in the Main Building of The Imperial at 5 p.m. with the French-Japanese dinner service staring at 6:15 p.m. Charges are 28,000 yen per person all-inclusive, and advance reservations are strongly suggested. The Imperial is also offering the show combined with accommodations for guests from abroad or out of town, with the show, the dinner and double occupancy Tower rooms at 74,000 yen, Tower triples at 102,000 yen, deluxe Main Building double occupancy room 81,000 yen and triples at 108,000 yen, inclusive of consumption tax and service charges.

For reservations and details, call 03-3504-1103, Mondays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

© Japan Today

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Wish I could go!!!!!

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God if only i lived in Japan i would go see this show in a heart beat

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I'd love to go but it's really pricey for someone from out of town! But then again, it's umi no hi the next day so you can go crazy... no work the next day.

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ya i live in japan and that would be great to goto but man thats alot of money if u wanna go all out

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formally educated dancers and entertainers -

This must be the decided-upon official definition. I wonder what you call the informally educated.

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I wish I have money tree...!!!

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Wow, this is something I would like to see.

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I have entered into serious negotiations with my wife, which translates as, you may think these prices are expensive as they are, but you have NO IDEA how much this might end up costing me.

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