6th Public Lecture

“Records of the Shuni-e Ritual (Omizu-tori) at Todaiji Temple”

The Department of Intangible Cultural Heritage held an annual public lecture at the Heiseikan of the Tokyo National Museum on October 22nd. The lecture dealt with recordings of the Shuni-e Ritual (Omizu-tori), held annually at Todaiji Temple, among materials in the Department’s collection. On-site recordings have continued to be made since 1967, resulting in an extensive collection including more than 400 10-inch open-reel tapes. Some of the recordings were played for the audience in between talks by the invited speakers, Mr. Hashimoto Shoen, Cho-ro (the head monk) of Todaiji Temple, who confined himself to the temple for prayer from the 1960s to the 1990s, and Ms. Sato Michiko, an emeritus researcher at the Institute who played a leading role in the recording work. An exhibition displaying rare materials related to Shuni-e was also featured at the Heiseikan.

The lecture and the exhibition were well-received by 200 or more participants. An overview of the lecture, including interesting stories told by Mr. Hashimoto and Ms. Sato in their talks, will be presented in the next Reseach and Reports on Intangible Cultural Heritage, Vol. 6, to be published in March 2012.

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