An Introduction to Japanese Nō Drama

The dramatic art of Nō (sometimes written “Noh”), or Nōgaku, originated in Japan around the 14th century. Although the art form owes it origins to an older Chinese form called sangaku, which came to Japan from China during the 8th century, the rigid discipline and technical aspects of a Nō performance are uniquely Japanese. In fact, many people consider Nō to be an entirely, and uniquely, Japanese dramatic form. Nō is a form of play composed of chanted verses, some of which are spoken by solo actors and others by a chorus. The play is accompanied by four musicians: three drummers and a flutist. Some of

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