Do you know “Sarugaku”, a traditional Japanese performing art?

“Noh” and “Kyogen” are traditional Japanese performing arts with a long history. They are performed on the same stage and together are called “Nohgaku”. “Sarugaku” is the former name for the current Noh theater, which is composed of Noh and Kyogen.

What is Noh? 

on song and dance performed by actors wearing masks and beautiful costumes. The story unfolds through spoken word and dance arranged to musical elements. The elements include instrumental music featuring a flute and percussion instruments, as well as vocal music called utai (chanting) in which words are set to a tune. The acting and staging are one of the most refined, and profound meaning is embodied in the slight movements of the actors. Another distinct element of Noh is that the main character is often not a real person, playing roles such as ghosts and spirits.

The story of “The World is Dancing” is set in the Muromachi period (14th to 16th century), and the main character, “Oni-Yasha (later Zeami)”, is devoted to dancing. When we hear the word “dance,” we think of Western dance parties in the olden days and idols and artists in the modern age, but we Japanese honestly felt uncomfortable when “Noh” was called “dance”.

However, as we read the story, we become convinced that, indeed, “Sarugaku(Nohgaku)” is also a dance. “Oni-Yasha is portrayed as a child who is unusually obsessed with the way his body moves and who seems to be constantly thinking about what dancing is.

Birds are shaped to fly.

Then what is the human form for?

In fact, the author “Kazuto Mihara” previously drew a manga titled “Hajime Algorithm” featuring a child immersed in mathematics. He is an artist who is very good at drawing children immersed in something. And since he has been able to depict abstract themes such as mathematics in a way that is easy to understand and, above all, interesting, we believe that he will be able to appropriately depict a worldview such as “Noh” drama, which is also a difficult theme.


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