luglio 9, 2010
febbraio 26, 2009
Ritratti di Maria Rosaria Coluccia.
E mentre, oggi, Ichimame festeggia il suo primo giorno da geisha io celebro l’uscita del mio romanzo, Diario di una maiko, presentando la mostra Miyabi no Mai e le mie “Lezioni sull’Arte della Geisha” da ZouZou. La coincidenza dei due eventi sarà, per me, fonte di buon auspicio! Non ho dubbi in proposito.
settembre 17, 2008
Flip-flops and changes
Like a marionette.
There’s someone in the shadows
Pulling your strings.
Patto – kawarishi
Omae no kokoro
Kage de ito hiku
Hito ga aru
…Sto leggendo questo delizioso saggio di Liza Dalby e mi ha talmente affascinato da spingermi a proprorle di curarne la traduzione italiana, per una nuova edizione riveduta e ampliata.
Il suo sì mi ha stupito e reso felice, allo stesso tempo. Dunque mi metto subito al lavoro!
Grazie, cara Liza, sarà un onore collaborare con te.
Il tuo cuore
Ondeggia e muta
come una marionetta.
tira i tuoi fili.
giugno 8, 2008
Taneju, 18, From Kyoto, Japan
“I’ve been a maiko or trainee geisha for three years now. None of my family were geisha, and until I was 15 I was an ordinary schoolgirl. Then one day I saw a documentary about maiko and I knew that was what I wanted to be.
I spend my days learning arts, such as Japanese traditional dance and the tea ceremony. I also attend party’s at night where I entertain men and women. My make-up takes over an hour to apply. It was hard to learn at first but after three years I can almost do it in my sleep.
I wear different kimono for every occasion and a complete outfit including jewelry which costs over € 15,000. But the price can be much higher. Wearing a kimono takes a long time to get used to, they are incredibly heavy. And because of the way they are tied it’s hard to move easily. They are so valuable that I worry about damaging them, or even getting them wrinkled. In my bag I always carry a fan for dancing, make-up and powder (they all come from a company called Chidoriya) But I’m not allowed to have a mobile.
I have to go to a special geisha hairdresser all the time: with my hairstyle I can’t sleep on a regular pillow. In the beginning my mother showed me how to sleep on my chin, I couldn’t move my head to the side! If I did it would be straight back to the hairdresser! But now I sleep on a wooden neck platform, although I only sleep more then six hours a night because of my work.
On my days off I’ll go shopping with my geisha mother and litter sister — they are just as much as my family as my real one. I can never wear just normal clothes: it’d look so strange because my hairstyle lets everyone know I’m a maiko.
I go back and see my old friends when I can, and at first we’re all excited to see each other, but we’re so different. They’re in their third year of high school and looking to their future.
But mine is already decided, it was my dream to become a geisha!”
maggio 22, 2008
aprile 15, 2008
A partire dal Festival delle Lanterne, festeggiato nel marzo 1952 presso il vicino Kitano Shrine dedicato a Sugawara no Michizane, ogni anno, nel distretto di Kamishichiken, si tiene la Kitano Odori.
Geiko e Maiko sono sempre le protagoniste ineliminabili nei banchetti tradizionali ma le loro abilità sono molto più numerose: le esibizioni nella musica tradizionale in diversi stili come Nagauta, Tokiwazu e Kiyomoto, la padronanza di strumenti come lo shamisen, il whistle, lo tsuzumi e la perfezione nella danza classica giapponese. Devono inoltre conoscere l’antico dialetto di Kyoto e le tradizionali canzoni popolari che rappresentano un aspetto molto importante dell’intrattenimento nelle teahouses. I clienti abituali ricordano queste canzoni e si divertono molto a intonarle, insieme a loro, durante la serata. Si esercitano, quotidianamente, nella pratica e nella teoria per acquisire tutte le conoscenze e le abilità indispensabili a una geisha e la Kitano Odori è come un grande show aperto al pubblico durante il quale possono esibirsi in modo completo.
勝瑠 ~ Katsuru (maiko), fotografata da Momoyama durante la Kitano Odori 2008.
marzo 12, 2008
Photo: Baika sai (2008) by Dave Lumenta
All girls must have being interested in the life of maiko at least once. Their black wareshinobu hairstyle and long and gorgeous darari obi sash are so attractive. No doubt that there are many maiko experience studio in Kyoto and they are popular. However, it is not so easy to be a real maiko in reality. There are several conditions. If you meet all of them, then you are able to be a maiko!
1. Maiko is an apprentice of professional female entertainer
It is not an ordinary job. Maiko is an apprentice who wish to be full hedge entertainer.
2. The age must be between 15 and 17
It is too late to start the training period when you finish high school (18 years old). The best timing is 15 years old.
3. The height should be shorter than 160 cm
A maiko should not be too tall. When you wear okobo (high wooden shoes), it will add another 10 cm on your height.
4. The weight must be over 43 kg
Because the maiko costume is really heavy, you have to be over 43 kg.
5. Parents’ consent
Because you are under 20, you need the permission from your parents to be a maiko.
6. Fondness to traditional Japanese entertainment
You don’t have to have an experience, but it is important that you have a sense of sound.
7. Fondness to Japanese life style
Everything is Japanese style: kimono, tea ceremony, flowers arrangement, ozashiki (Japanese room) manner and you have to use high wooden pillow when you go to bed. Therefore you must love Japanese style living.
8. Overwhelming patience
While you are in shikomi period (pre-training before maiko), everything must be learned: manners, washing, cleaning, shopping, other trivial things in the life and what is the most important is to learn how to speak Kyoto dialect.
9. No monthly tuition fee required
You don’t have to pay for anything. Everything including living expense, lesson fee, etc. are responsible for okiya.
10. Training period
Including shikomi (pre-training before maiko) and disciple period, you have to expect to spend 4-5 years as a maiko.
These are 10 necessary conditions to be a maiko, and of course this is not everything. Another important point is if you can make a good relationship with your elder maiko and geiko. The okasan (the manager) will strictly watch you while you are in training…
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…Thanks to Dave Lumenta for the Ookini zaidan’s saying:
O – Otagai ni (each other)
O – Omoiyari (to respect others)
Ki – Kikubari shite (to be sensitive to others’ feelings)
Ni – Nikoya Ni (with smile)
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