Noh Dance Essay

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4.3 Costumes
Another important element that contributes in the representation of the female “shite” in Sakuragawa, is costumes. Costumes not only provide a way of portraying the main female role, but also they help to visualize shite’s transition between Mae-shite to Nochi-shite. (Feminine Madness in the Japanese Noh Theater 81-86).
Noh costumes are not a real representation of the character on stage, but they can imply different aspects of the character. In order to do so, Noh Theater has some rules to follow. This rules are regarding the combinations of the costumes and if the audience is educated enough about this aspect of Noh they are able to determine age, social status, gender personality and even the occupation. (Kinishita,Akira). This is the reason why in Sakuragawa, as shown below presents a change of clothes representing the transformation of the shite and it is another element contributes to the
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One of them is “Kakeri” a short Noh dance that qualifies under the category of “anguish dances” in Noh Theater and it is present in the second act of the play. In contrast the second one is “Iroe” a “color dance” that contributes to the “refinement” of the female shite. (Historical Dictionary). Dances are generic in Noh theater and general context is needed in order to be able to understand the range of emotions and the meaning behind the dance. In the case of “Sakuragawa” dances are a way of showing the evolution and change that the shite has from the first act “mae-shite” to “nochi-shite”. (Katyokai, Yoyogi) Dances follow the pattern of the music and the movements, they are completely abstract. All the dances are based in the same movements, but the change between them could be seen in the tempo. For example when the shite is performing a “kakeri” dance the tempo and mood are completely different than in a “Iroe” performance, but the movements still generic (Traditional

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