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Cultural Enrichment Activities - Magome & Ena Trip

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The Ancient Nakasendo Post Town of Magome

On May 8th, NUCB students visited two post towns in Nakasendo, one of the major routes connecting Tokyo with Kyoto during the Edo period.

In the morning a group of students from India, France, Indonesia, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Nepal, and the Philippines stayed in Magome where traditional food stands selling gohei-mochi, freshly-baked rice crackers, chestnut snacks, and souvenir shops lined up on both sides of the road.

Hiroshige Art Museum, Ena City

In the afternoon, they headed to Hiroshige Art Museum located in Ooi-juku, the city of Ena. The museum was founded in memory of Utagawa Hiroshige, who was considered the last great master of Japanese Ukiyo-e, one of the most important art forms during the Tokugawa period. In the museum, students experienced the process of making a woodblock print, a technique best known for its application in the Ukiyo-e.

Meiji Tenno Ooi Anzaisho

A while later, they visited the ‘Meiji Tenno Ooi Anzaisho’, a historical heritage where the Meiji Emperor used to stay. Some community volunteers explained the structure of the building, the furniture, and the tools that are used in the past, and finally, there was a previous Kabuki actor teaching students the ending posture of Kabuki performance.

Kabuki involves sophisticated costumes, eye-catching make-up, outlandish wigs, and arguably most importantly, the exaggerated actions performed by the actors.

The event offered not only a precious opportunity for the students to explore the culture that is not easy to find in Nagoya city, but also a chance to interact with the local community people who take pride in their history and tradition.