Kristine Ohkubo and Kanariya Eiraku, "Talking About Rakugo 1: The Japanese Art of Storytelling" (2022)


Rakugo is a live performance art that has penetrated the borders of Japan and continues to gain popularity overseas. The rakugo stage once dominated by Japanese raconteurs now features foreign storytellers, as well as Japanese performers, both amateur and professional, who endeavor to entertain us in English. The only requirements for rakugo storytelling are a folding fan, a hand towel, and your imagination!

In Talking About Rakugo 1: The Japanese Art of Storytelling (2022), learn what distinguishes rakugo from Japan's other traditional performing arts, become acquainted with its greatest contributors, enjoy some of rakugo's most popular classical stories, and meet the performers of today.

In this episode, the rakugo storyteller Kanariya Eiraku also gives an audio demonstration of a classic rakugo story that has been adapted to a modern-day audience. English translations for other classic rakugo stories can be found in his other book, Eiraku's 100 English Rakugo Scripts.

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Jingyi Li

Dr. Jingyi Li is a cultural historian of nineteenth-century Japan. She researches about early modern Japan, literati, and commercial publishing.

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