Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Soran! Soran! Soran! Yosakoi!

Okay, so the Sapporo Snow Festival gets all of the fame and notoriety, but it's the Yosakoi Soran Festival that is the most awesome, colorful, and energetic high-light of the festival calendar year here in Sapporo! As I mentioned last year, this festival is a five-day frenzy of some of the most amazing dancing you'll ever see. Seriously, it's like all of the shackles of the longest winter ever simply melt away with every shout of "Soran!"

Sapporo holds Japan's largest Yosakoi Soran festival, hosting some 300 teams with about 50,000 dancers! How can you not get pumped up and ready for a whole new outlook on life with 50,000 dancers running about your town!?!

Dancing on a costumed and choreographed Yosakoi team may seem a little breezy, but some of these folks spends MONTHS practicing everyday...they're hard-core serious! Among all of the sweat and hard work however, they look like they're having the time of their lives, which is pretty darn awesome:

Even Coke has jumped on the bandwagon to quench all of your Yosakoi needs (and caffeine fixes):

The best part of this year's festival was that I got to participate on a team as well! Remember what I said about the hard-core serious months-of-practicing stuff? Not really up my alley. Good thing there's the Hokkaido JR team...we not only learned our dance in an hour, but we also got to perform on the same day! Who's hardcore now!?

Our Nippon Ham Fighters naruko. Naruko clappers are required for every team performance in the festival:

Our team consisted of about 50 members altogether, but here are the "Hokkaido University students" (ahem) represented in all their glory:

You don't really get a true appreciation for Yosakoi until you perform your dance about five times down about five blocks under a blanket of intense sun! Um, TOTALLY worth it! It's amazing fun, and one-day is just the right amount of devotion for me:

And with that, the summer festival season has officially kicked off here in Hokkaido!


floraldoll said...

hihi.. me again,

Love your shots again :)

I am planning to go Osaka & Hokkaido late Nov/Dec this year. Will be there with my hubby and my two boys.

Any place that I should not missed in Hokkaido?

Million thanks.

ThiessenTwosome said...

SO SORRY about this incredibly late reply! I've had incredible problems with being able to view my blogger comments, and yours have just shone through today! If you're still on board with needing some info, just shoot me an email at: thiessentwosome [at] gmail [dot} com

Enjoy Japan~