Enjoy Unique Japanese Theater Experiences!

Theater is a great form of storytelling where people can express their creativity and talent on stage. In Japan, theater is a great tradition of cultural arts. The costumes, music, and expression all require time, dedication, and talent. Today, both modern and traditional Japanese theater is embraced both in Japan and around the world. Here are some of the major types of theater in Japan.

Noh Stage at Itsukushima Shrine

Itsukushima Shrine’s Noh stage, often referred to in English as the Itsukushima Shrine Noh Stage, is a historic and cultural feature located on the island of Itsukushima (also known as Miyajima), which is part of the city of Hatsukaichi in Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan. This Noh stage is an integral part of Itsukushima Shrine, a Shinto shrine that is famous worldwide for its floating torii gate and its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.ushimajinja Nobutai

Noh is a type of traditional Japanese theater that combines dance, drama, and music. In Noh, wooden masks are worn to show the actor’s emotions to the entire audience, no matter where they sit. Noh is performed by only five schools and has been passed down through the IEMOTO system for centuries. The costumes used in Noh are heavy and intricate and relate to the dramatic theme. Everyone who performs Noh is male, as the traditions in this type of theater have existed for a long time.


Kabuki is another type of Japanese theater that involves masked male actors. This dance-drama type of theater is an exciting event with food and drink. The actors take years to master and develop their acting skills and style. Once they have mastered Kabuki, the actor can take the name of his teacher. Since Kabuki is usually passed down through generations of a family, the teacher is usually the actor’s father or grandfather. Kabuki is considered one of the most famous forms of Japanese theater and has been an important part of Japanese theater culture since the 17th century.



Kyogen is a traditional type of comic theater that focuses on the characters of a master and his servant. This type of theater is exaggerated and satirical, trying to make the audience laugh. Typically, Kyogen acts are short and are used as an intermission between the main show for a bit of comic relief. Because of the short length of the skit, Kyogen doesn’t use masks or heavy costumes.

By Kayley Hill

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