Article ”Even at 80 years old “Eyaa!” ” (Okinawa Times)
Even at 80 years old “Eyaa!”
A full house kobudō demonstration
Published in the Okinawa Times newspaper on November 27, 1961
With the support of the Cultural Heritage Protection Committee, the Ryūkyū Shimpō and the Okinawa Times, the Okinawa Kobudō Association sponsored the “1st Okinawa kobudō demonstration” at the Naha Theater on January 26 from PM1:00. Next to Chief Executive Ōta (1), Naha City Mayor Kaneji, even mainland sightseeing tour groups present on the island at that time showed up. The venue was thus extremely crowded on both the first and second floors, with even people at the windows.
Demonstrations included “Passai” and “Kūsankū” etc for karate as well as Sai, Nunchaku, Kama, Kiai-justu, Taiho-justu etc., altogether close to 80 items that are not usually performed in public. The performers participated from all over the island, including Minami Daito, and unique martial arts that were hidden in various regions were introduced. Young performers were mixed with elderly seniors such as 83 years old Nohara Kamaichi (Kochinda Village), 82 years old Irei Matsutarō (Koza City), and 79 years old Kina Shōsei (Koza City). The seniors displayed powerful technique that surpassed that of the young performers and their performances received great applauses.
Words from Chief Executive Ōta: I think it was meaningful to have a demonstration to preserve the old martial arts passed down from our ancestors. There were many things that I had never seen before. Through the excellence displayed today, I feel that we have gained pride and confidence in the culture of our ancestors. It can also be said that old martial arts are loved not only in the city centers but also in the entire Ryūkyūs. I would be happy if this could be the driving force for a new cultural creation.
(1) Ōta Seisaku was the Chief Executive of the Government of the Ryūkyū Islands from October 1959 to November 1964.