上方Rakugo

Kamigata rakugo is a form of traditional Japanese comic storytelling at home in Osaka and the surrounding areas. The art is narrated by professionals — today both men and women —  called hanashika or rakugoka. The art as we know it as today is a product of modern times, but it can be connected to a number of related traditions that date to the Edo period (1600-1868) and earlier.

Though the art is often referred to as simply rakugo in the local area, it is more widely known as Kamigata rakugo since there is a Tokyo-based variety of the art with its own well-established and distinct traditions.

There were several points in the twentieth century when Kamigata rakugo came close to “extinction,” but, thanks to dedicated hanashika,  scholars, and (of course) fans, Kamigata rakugo managed to survive and even enjoyed a couple of booms along the way. Today the art is enjoying yet another boom. There are more than 200 hanashika active in Osaka, and a new generation of fans is eager to attend shows.

Want to learn about artistic family crests? Click here!

上方落語は大阪とその周辺を中心とした日本の伝統滑稽話芸です。噺家、または落語家と呼ばれる専門家(プロ、現在男性も女性も含めて)が噺を語ります。今日知られている落語は近代の産物ですが、落語につながる話芸伝統は江戸時代とその前に遡ります。

現地では「落語」と呼ばれることが多いですが、その他の地域では「上方落語」として広く知られています。東京を拠点とし根付いている「落語」とは区別されます。落語の伝統がそれぞれ異なるからです。

20世紀には、上方落語が消滅してしまう恐れも何度かありましたが、熱心な噺家、学者、そして(もちろん)ファンのおかげで、上方落語が復活し、落語ブームを迎えることもできました。現在、再び落語ブームだと言えます。大阪で活躍している噺家の数は200人を超え、新しい時代を迎え、落語ファンが落語会に熱心に足を運んでいます。

噺家の定紋について知りたい方はこちらへクリック!

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