Traditional Japanese music genres have long histories but have changed little in hundreds of
years. In a modern world, it could be perceived as stagnation, but it is in fact the reflection of the
Japanese value of stability. Performances are uniform with great decorum. Music types include
court music, musical drama, chamber music, and chant. Traditional Japanese music is performed
today in recital halls inside great department stores in the Ginza area of Tokyo. The music is
primarily pentatonic with auxiliary pitches.

       What is a pentatonic scale? How would you describe its sound?

Explain the following terms:

        Hogaku                               Sokyoku                              Ryuteki
        Gagaku                               Sankyoku                             Nokhan
        Noh                                  Koto                                 Fue
        Kabuki                               Shamisen                             Hichiriki
        Bunraku                              Shakuhachi                           Sho

Kabuki (theater)
What is the significance of the following:

        Kabukiza                             Chobo                                Kyogenkata
        Degatari                             Debayashi                            O-daiko
        Geza                                 Nagauta

Bunraku (puppet plays)
      Gidayubushi                            Chikamatsu Monzaemon

Noh (theater)
    What are the origins of Noh?
    Who was Zeami Motokiyo? What did he do?

Explain the following:

        Uta                                                     Kotobe
        Hayashi                                                 Fushi
        Taiko                                                   Yowagin
        Kakegoe                                                 Tsuyogin
        Yokyoku                                                 Ko-tsuzumi and o-tsuzumi

Shinto Music
Define the following terms:

        Mikagura                             Wagon                                Shakubyoshi
        Kagura                               Kagura-bue

Buddhist Music
      What is Shomyo?
      What are the Nara and Heian periods? Why are they significant?
      What is Mahayana Mahayana Buddhism
      What are the Ryo and ritsu?

Sokyoku (koto music)
    What is the Kumiuta?
    What is Danmono?
    What is Jiuta?
    What are the three part of Tegotomono?

    What are the togaku and komagaku? How did they come to be?
    What are Kangen and Bugaku?
    Explain the constituent parts to Jo-ha-kyu?

Gagaku Instruments
    What are the different instruments used in Gagaku? What are role or function does each
      play in music?

Deeper Discussion
    Generally, in comparison to Japan, how does our culture regard the performance and
       listening of music 1,000, or even 500-years-old?
    How can the development of Western opera or musicals be compared to the development
       of Japanese genres such as noh and kabuki?
    How may we account for the lack of musical puppet theater in the West, and what might
       be in its place?
    How do the practices of sokyoku and sankyoku compare to their contemporary musical
       counterparts in Europe?
    What is Gregorian chant? How does it compare with Buddhist chant? How does it
       contrast it with Shinto music?
    May we find equivalents to court music in the West? Why or why not?
    How have women been regarded in musical performance in the West in comparison or in
       contrast to Japanese women from Edo to the twentieth-century?

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