May 12th Tues to
May 17th Sun
(No pre-booking required)
First Performance: 7:20pm
Second Performance: 8:10pm 2 performances/
Shomyo is Buddhist music that has been passed down from India since ancient times. Shomyo was brought to Japan during the Nara period until the beginning of the Heian period. Presently, Shomyo is performed as the traditional Buddhist ceremonial music for daily rituals and larger ceremonies, etc. Shomyo has influenced traditional Japanese music such as Yokyoku (music for Noh theater) and Joruri (music for Bunraku theater). Hence, Shomyo is also known as the "Source of Traditional Japanese music".
At beginning of the 13th Century, Shotobo Shoshin, the head priest of Koyasan Sanboin Temple, lamented the fact that even if Koyasan was the Sacred Mountain of Kobo Daishi's place of entering eternal meditation, the main line of Shomyo was not being passed down there. Therefore, at that time, he exerted great efforts to move the main line of Shomyo, known as "Shinryu Shomyo", that was founded by Daishin Shonin, from Nakagawa-dera Joju-in Temple in the Yamato province to Koyasan. Subsequently, Koyasan Shyomyo became known as "Nanzan Shinryu Shomyo" and has been passed down to this day.