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parade ((パレード):

The parade is the final scene of a Takarazuka performance.

Most iconic and recognizable in main-theater performances, a parade at the Grand Theater or Tokyo Theater displays all performers descending the Grand Staircase while waving shan-shan and singing an upbeat version of the theme song. The parade begins with an etoile in the spotlight, surrounded by the youngest members of the troupe in rockette costumes. Following this is a series of stars — popular otokoyaku and often musumeyaku — singing in small groups as they descend the staircase. They are flanked on either side by the rest of the troupe, usually in groups of threes or fours, starting from the underclassmen and continuing on to the upperclassmen. The order and number of stars featured in the center varies significantly depending on the style of the performance and the ranking of stars within the troupe, but generally the nibante and often the sanbante are distinguishable because they sing alone in the center of the staircase. The last to descend are the top musumeyaku and then the top star — the top otokoyaku is always given a spotlight for her solo.

Two memorable features of parades are the shan-shan and the feathers. "Shan-shan" is often used by fans as a catch-all phrase for whatever the seito are holding in their hands, but sometimes they have feather fans instead of true shan-shans. The parade feathers can be worn by all performers or only a select few, largely dependent on the stylistic choice of the director. In almost every case, however, the nibante, top musumeyaku and top star can be seen wearing a truly impressive array of feathers attached to their backs.

Once everyone has descended the staircase, the featured stars and select upperclassmen come forward along the ginkyou while the rest of the troupe sings on the main stage. When everyone has returned to the main stage, they finish the final song and the curtain is lowered, thus ending the performance.

Every main theater performance has a parade; even if there is a show first followed by a play, there is still a small finale section and a parade.

In national tours or other non-Grand Theater performances that include a full-length revue, a similar parade is performed with a smaller staircase.

In Bow Hall or other small-theater performances that do not include a full-length revue, the final bows are still sometimes referred to as a parade. However, in such performances there are no shan-shan, feathers or staircase.


Note: The final procession of a top star leaving the theater after finishing her sayonara kouen may also be referred to as a "parade".


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Created by lokai. Last Modification: Friday 13 of June, 2014 05:53:37 PDT by zaraphena.

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