KSU Japan Festival

2 05 2009

Michael watching the final performances

after the final performanceThis past weekend, April 25th, was the 14th annual Japan Festival at KSU.  As in years past, it was an exciting opportunity for KSU students and members of the Japanese community in Manhattan to share their culture through song, dance, food and various other performance.  We even got to reunite with some past Yosakoi alumni, including Yasu, who came back to perform his magic tricks for the show!

We did two performances, the first of which was in Forum Hall.  Soran Illusion and Net de Yosakoi were both big crowd-pleasers; Yosakoi got to share the stage here with KU’s Eisa group, Kuniko the storyteller and the Ki Daiko taiko group from Olathe.  Later we performed Soran Bushi in the courtyard, and also debuted our new blue happis.  The color really stood out and complimented our performance of a fisherman’s dance.

Several members said that this was the most fun festival they can remember performing in, and for several other memebers, this was their first opportunity to both participate in and see the KSU festival.  After a long day of practice and performances, we met other performers and organizing groups at the International Student Center for food and a raffle giveaway.  It was great to reunite with past Yosakoi members and see all of our hard work pay off with a well-received performance.

KSU Performs at KU Festival

23 04 2009

On April 11th, the KSU Japanese Yosakoi Dance Club performed several dances at the University of Kansas. The KU Japan Festival, which is hosted and run by KU’s Japanese Student Association, featured a variety of performances ranging from Rakugo storytelling to Eisa dance, Japanese cultural skits and a fashion show. Yosakoi performed Net de Yosakoi, Soran Bushi and Samurai. This year’s performance was Yosakoi’s third consecutive performance at the annual KU festival. We were able to introduce new members to the KU festival and share in the Japanese culture presented by our neighboring state university. Yosakoi made the trip to Lawrence into a day trip where we enjoyed the festival performances during the afternoon, and finished the day by enjoying dinner at a sushi restaurant in downtown Lawrence. The event was a fun way for KSU Yosakoi to share our dance in the cultural performances during the festival, and to show appreciation for some of the groups who will be performing in our own KSU Japan Festival this weekend.

KSU Open House

23 04 2009

This last Sat around 2:30 Yosakoi which had been scheduled to perform behind the library and was reassigned to the Union plaza.  Having all met at the Library we used the added time to get as ready as possible. Some people were stretching others reviewing the dances and others just relaxing before dancing in the sun. We went to the plaza a little early to watch the other performances  which included the KC Marching Cobras always a treat.   Then the K-state Tap group and that group broke in half and joined some hand drummers to become the K-state African Rhythm and dance group.  We were up after them and performed 2 dances;  where we had as I would assume a much larger audience than we would have behind the library better sound too.  It was a beautiful spring day barely a cloud in the sky and we were all ready to show our yosakoi pride.  I was able to catch the second dance on VIDEO it was called Net de yosakoi. This is the dance that if some members choose to go to Japan will be the one performed there.  After the dance we dispersed eager to be out of the hot sun. All round this was a great performance and very fun.


Yosakoi Performs at Naka-Kon

7 04 2009

The Yosakoi group were highlighted as guests of honor at Naka-kon 2009. This Anime convention, which is hosted annually, took place this year at the Hyatt hotel in the Crown Center shopping area. Yosakoi members enjoyed an early-morning roadtrip to the hotel, where they registered and had lunch before teaching a workshop. Four members of the team taught Soran Bushi to Naka-con participants while QiuXia vocalized the different steps and ran the music.

After dinner at Kabuki, a Japanese restaurant inside Crown Center, the team returned to the convention and performed 3 dances during an exhibition of Anime costumes and Japanese culture. This was Yosakoi’s debut of the dance Net de Yosakoi. After the performance, while judges were deciding the results of the costume contest, Yosakoi was asked to come back onstage. The group performed Yocchore as a finale to the evening’s performance. After an exhausting but enjoyable day, Yosakoi returned to Manhattan, having debuted their new dance to an enthusiastic audience in a new venue.

WMS Fine Arts Fair Workshop

7 03 2009

Ching, Cami, and Jordan traveled to Wamego to provide a Yosakoi workshop at the annual Wamego Middle School (WMS) Fine Arts Fair on March 7, 2009. WMS students had the opportunity to experience many different workshops including Yosakoi and ranging from a photographer to a jazz band. The three Yosakoi members did six workshop sections for the students and taught them a variety of songs and a brief description of Yosakoi. It was an exhausting and tiring day to teach Yosakoi for four hours straight, but we throughly enjoyed working with and teaching the students.

The Wamego Times even caught a glimpse of our workshop and took a photo of us which happened to land the front page!  (Link and picture coming soon!!! )




KSU Alumni Performance

18 02 2009

Last week, a few members of KSU Yosakoi had the opportunity to perform for the KSU Alumni Board. On February 13th, Barbara, Cami, Ching, Greta and Jordan were able to perform two dances for a small audience in the KSU Alumni Center on campus. The group first danced the Yosakoi Soran, followed by a description of Yosakoi and some of its history. After some self-introductions by the Yosakoi members, and a short question-answer session, the group finished with a performance of Soran Bushi. This was a special opportunity for Barbara, who is part of the Alumni Board, to introduce her co-members to the Yosakoi dance. The board members were very appreciative and asked a lot of questions. It was an energetic, short performance in which the group was able to give a short history of Yosakoi and to share this style of dance with the Alumni board members.

Welcome Back Social Reconnects New and Old Members

18 02 2009

On February 6th, a group of about 12 past and present KSU Yosakoi members met to celebrate a new semester of dancing and getting to know new members. The “Welcome Back” social took place at the Pizza Hut in Aggieville, where members met to eat pizza, play games and socialize. It was a great opportunity for those who have been unable to dance this semester to reconnect with the club, and meet some of the newer members who have joined.