In celebration of Sanshin Day, March 4, I’m featuring a Ryūkyū Koten Ongaku (Ryūkyū classical music) song called “Kajadifū Bushi (かぎやで風節).” It has a bit of history for myself as the first song I learned on uta-sanshin from Katsumi Shinsato-sensei some fifteen years ago and I’ve been playing it ever since. Here’s a little background information on the song from Naganori Komine’s Okinawan Poetry: A Translation of Okinawan Poems from the KUN-KUN-SI (The Textbook of Okinawan song).
There are several different interpretations of the background of this song.
(1) There was a mute prince in the Ryūkyū kingdom. A high ranking clansmen named Ūaragusiku was grieved by this. One day, the prince found out that he was being considered to be the King’s successor. The prince demonstrated that he had just been pretending to be dumb in order to see what was going on among his followers. Watching the scene, the clansmen Ūaragusiku express his joy in this verse.
(2) A blacksmith, or KANJAYA named Okuma, helped Prince Shoen when there was a crisis. After that, when Shoen inherited the kingdom, Okuma became a clansmen. The blacksmith expressed his joy in this verse.
KIYU NU FUKURASHA YA
Today’s joyous occasion,
NAWUNI JANA TATIRU
To what can we compare it?
TSIBUDI WURU HANANU
It’s like a bud waiting to bloom,
TSIYU CHATA GUTU
Touched by the morning dew.
Sample of Kajadifu Bushi.
The 2006 Fuji TV drama series ‘Attention Please’ is returning to television for a second special episode. The series starred Aya Ueto as Yoko Misaki, a young woman training to become a flight attendant. In January of last year, Fuji TV aired the first special, which featured Yoko flying to Honolulu.
This time, Yoko will face new troubles as she flies to Sydney, Australia. The story also involves a major event for the instructor Mikami, played by Miki Maya. Other returning cast members include Saki Aibu, Chihiro Otsuka, and Kotaro Koizumi, though it is not yet clear whether Ryo Nishikido will be back. Yuichi Sato will again be directing.
Fuji TV will broadcast the special at 9:30pm on April 3.
(Link: Second special for “Attention Please” announced – Tokyograph.)
Cool, a second special for Aya Ueto’s “Attention Please.” Actually, I missed both the drama series and the first special so I’m hoping to hop on board for the April special.
Popular utasha (Okinawan folk singer) Kazutoshi “Kaazuu” Matsuda recently performed in two of Okinawa’s New Year’s TV specials: RBC’s “Kouhaku Uta-gassen” and OTV’s “Shinshun! Shimauta no Saiten.” Although both shows won’t air until January (RBC’s one on 1/2, OTV’s on 1/3), Kaazuu is sharing a few pics on his blog which gives us a preview of his performance as well as backstage scenes.
On December 14, Fuji TV will broadcast a drama special titled ‘Churaumi Kara no Nengajou.’ It revolves around Okinawa’s Churaumi Aquarium, which opened in 2002 and was the largest in the world until 2005.
Actor Saburo Tokito stars in the drama as the aquarium’s director. The story begins when he announces the plans for the aquarium’s 7500-ton main tank, inspired by a boy fighting an incurable illness in a Hokkaido hospital.
The supporting cast includes Kenta Suga as the young boy and Hiro Mizushima as a postal worker delivering the boy’s letters to Tokito.
(Via Tokito stars in Churaumi drama special – Tokyograph.)
Saburo Tokito also starred in the J-drama “Dr. Koto Shinryoujo” which was filmed on location in Yonaguni, Okinawa.