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Arts Toolkit

Arts Toolkit: Drama Idea File



Idea File:

Japanese Theater Traditions

What is Kabuki

Students research styles of Japanese theater and present findings.


What Is Kabuki?

Suggested Uses:

  • Drama
  • Arts and Humanities
  • World Geography

Teaching Concepts:

  • In learning about Japanese drama styles, students increase their understanding of other cultures.

Academic Content

  • Culture: Japan, with an emphasis on Kabuki and Bunraku
  • Drama: use of elements of drama in dramatic works

Lesson Idea

Video: Bunraku; Kabuki segments 1, 2, 3, and 7

  1. Show the Bunraku and Kabuki video segments (segments 1, 2, 3 and 7 from Kabuki) and discuss attributes of these forms of drama.
  2. Have students research other styles of Japanese theater, including Noh and Kyogen.

    The following web sites may be helpful in this research:
  3. Have students compare and contrast these dramatic forms and make generalizations about Japanese dramatic traditions that they can back up with evidence from their research.
  4. Have students prepare presentations or performances of the various styles.

Author: Mary Henson


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