To wrap up our Orientation program, we organized an Obon celebration! Obon, or Bon Festival, is one of the major holidays in Japan and is a time to honor the spirit of one’s ancestors. Celebrated either in mid-July or mid-August (depending on the region of Japan), it is often commemorated with the Bon Odori (Bon Dance). Here at UWC ISAK Japan, our returning students choreographed their own Bon Odori, taking from classic dances and adding a little modern spin to it. For many of our new students, it was a fantastic induction into Japanese culture, as well as a great time of fun and bonding with the entire community.
Ayana (Class of 2019, Japan), shared with us that her favourite part of the celebrations was how people gradually got together and learned the dance throughout the night. “It is always awkward since people are new to the Bon Odori, but it is amazing how people can quickly learn and enjoy them in the end!”
“It was the perfect event to start off a new school year! I had so much fun not only dancing but wearing a yukata and celebrating one of the most important events of the year. I was so happy that many of the international students really enjoyed wearing the yukata or happi for the first time; I will remember their smiles forever! I want more opportunities to introduce my culture to other students as well as learning about their cultures.”
– Yuina (Class of 2021, Japan)