Japan trip 2016 – the last day, tameshigiri (test cutting)

On my last day in Kumamoto we were invited to come to the home and dojo of the soke of the Unkou-ryu to practice tameshigiri or test-cutting. Yamamoto-sensei and Uehara-soke took me, Sakaguchi-san, Mori-san and Tazoe-kun to the house where we had lunch with the soke and a top disciple, Ms. Nakamura. After lunch we went to the outdoor dojo where we practiced tameshigiri.




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Japan trip 2016 – Nishiki-Machi Matsuri enbu


Last enbu of the trip at the Nishiki-Machi Matsuri (festival). – October 29, 2016.

The founder of the Taisha-ryu, Marume Kurando, retired to farm in Nishiki, a hamlet in Hitoyoshi when he retired from service with the ruling Sagara han and died there in 1629. His memory is still revered so Taisha-ryu is honoured to demonstrate for the local government every year at the annual festival and at other events.

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Japan trip 2016 -Hitoyoshi Cultural Center enbu

On October 17, the city of Hitoyoshi held a benefit to help victims of the Kumamoto earthquake which struck six months earlier. It was a showcase of traditional Japanese arts including the Martial Art of the Taisha-ryu which was founded in the area nearly 450 years ago. Happily, my only job on the day was to take photos. Here are a few them both backstage and from the audience.

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