I was lucky enough to participate in the 2017 Shibuya Ohara Festival, which marked the 20th anniversary of the event. There were over 2,500 dancers from over 60 teams. My team was the first ever international team to participate, and we were very pleased to receive the award for best new entry!
The first half of the parade is a competition where the dance teams are judged on their performances of the two main dances 'Shibuya Ondo' and 'Ohara-Bushi'. This is followed by a half hour break in the parade while professional dancers and acrobats perform to remixes of traditional Japanese music, which was very impressive to watch.
In the second half of the festival, the audience are invited to join the parade so if you've ever wanted to learn Japanese dance - this is the perfect opportunity! Any member of the public can join so try and pick up the dance in the first half and then join in!
If you are in Japan in late May I hope you will visit the Shibuya Kagoshima Ohara Festival to get a glimpse of traditional dance from Kagoshima and to cheer on the International Ohara team!