Men clad in sarashi white cloth compete bravely throughout the town, while elaborately decorated yatai floats are paraded around as if a magnificent historical picture scroll unfolded.
The Furukawa Festival offers two contrasting atmospheres: dynamic and tranquil. Driven by a desire to make as many people as possible discover the joy of this festival, the Hida Furukawa Festival Exhibition Hall was created.
Here, visitors can experience the culture that has been developed along with the festival by the participants, those who support and look after them, and all other people living in Furukawa.
You should join in the festival inside this building.
The reopening of the Hida Furukawa Festival Exhibition Hall scheduled for Saturday,
April 11 will be suspended for the time being in order to prevent the spread of new coronavirus infection.
Open is scheduled for Monday, June 1st.
We apologize for any inconvenience, and thank you for your understanding.
It is a privilege to narrate an audio guide for the Hida Furukawa Festival Exhibition Hall. Among numerous festivals in Japan, the Furukawa Festival is known for its two contrasting atmospheres: dynamic and tranquil. I introduce to you this unique festival, as well as the culture of Furukawa in which the festival was born. I hope you will enjoy a wide variety of items displayed here along with my narration.
Born in 1977 in Gifu Prefecture. Since his acting debut in the 2003 TBS drama Kogen e irasshai (Welcome to highlands), he has appeared in numerous TV dramas and films, showing a distinctive presence. His recent films include Honnoji hoteru (Honnoji hotel) and Hirugao (Belle de jour) in 2017, and Haruka no sue (Haruka’s pottery) in 2019. For TV dramas, his works in 2019 include TV Asahi’s Yasuragi no toki: michi (A peaceful time: road), YTV’s Watashi danna o shieashiteta (I shared my husband), and NHK’s Kore wa keihi de ochimasen (This is not a reimbursable expense).
In the Okoshi-Daiko (rousing drum), half-naked men clad in sarashi white cloth carry around a frame-mounted turret on which a large drum is perched, shouting out and making the rounds of Hida’s Furukawa town.
The stars of this event are the men beating the large drum on the turret. The role of drum beater is a once-in-a-lifetime honor and what every shrine parishioner yearns for. The event kicks off with several hundred men singing a celebratory song in chorus. Immediately after that, a fierce offensive and defensive battle begins surrounding the Okoshi-Daiko, and the festival heats up at once.
The yatai floats of the Furukawa Festival are acclaimed as the height of Hida craftsmanship.
Its beauty has resulted from the perfect fusion of the cultures of Eastern and Western Japan. The yatai brought in from Edo were enhanced by the highly skilled craftsmen of Hida, and with the addition of karakuri ningyo (mechanical marionettes) from Kyoto evolved into a distinctive form of art centered on elaborately decorated yatai floats.
The way the yatai floats are paraded around is as if a historical picture scroll unfolded. In the Yomatsuri event held after nightfall, each float is paraded with its paper lanterns lit, creating an ambience of quiet and elegant beauty in contrast to its daytime liveliness.