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National Bunraku Theater

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Address: 1-12-10 Nippombashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka 542-0073, Osaka Prefecture
Name/address in local language
Phone Number: +81 6-6212-2531
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Fee: Yes

One of the few places where bunraku, traditional Japanese pupper theater,...

One of the few places where bunraku, traditional Japanese pupper theater, can be enjoyed, this theater combines the latest in theater technology with architectural elements from the Edo period in Japan.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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An afternoon at the National Bunraku Theater was a highlight of our trip to Japan. Bunraku began in Osaka and is drawn from kabuki theatrical traditions. It uses elaborate... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed July 26, 2016
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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101 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 36: English reviews
Oulu, Finland
Level Contributor
16 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 28, 2016

Bunraku was for sure a very interesting form of art! Never seen anything like that before. Unfortunately you couldn't understand what they were saying (obviously) if you don't speak japanese... But interesting indeed!

Thank Elina K
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 26, 2016

An afternoon at the National Bunraku Theater was a highlight of our trip to Japan. Bunraku began in Osaka and is drawn from kabuki theatrical traditions. It uses elaborate puppets--large ones, maybe half the size of people--and scenery to act out serious dramas. The main repertoire seems to be from the 18th- and 19th-centuries. The most important caution I want... More 

5 Thank NGfromPGH
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
139 reviews
41 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 20, 2016 via mobile

What a place and what an experience!! Enjoyed the elegant and meticulous performance of this traditional puppet art. All of the performance was in Japanese and it grows on you. Ushers brought us a. English translation of the story which made it more enjoyable. Our friends also helped us with a synopsis. The experience was unforgettable.

Thank Venkat C
Sacheon, South Korea
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 9, 2016

I enjoyed the performance, even though those puppets creep me out a little. The music, costuming, etc, was a great visual.

1 Thank Jillian T
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 21, 2016

Kabuki mixed with the tireless detail of Japanese arts are featured in Bunraku. These are serious plays (same plays performed in kabuki) acted out with elaborate puppets. You can easily get lost in the story and the fine detail of the puppets. Definitely pick up an English audio guide to understand the full story, context, symbolism, and action on the... More 

3 Thank ctro
Level Contributor
16 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 4, 2016 via mobile

Had human sized puppets that are handled by puppeteers who dressed in black. Fun and interesting for all ages. The show is divided into several sections, you can choose to watch one or add sections. Bus pass holder may be able to get a discount, don't forget to ask

2 Thank Pik-Kwan C
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 30, 2016 via mobile

Attending a performance at the National Bunraku Puppet Theatre in Osaka is a highlight. Check the schedules in advance, as the troupe only performs at certain times of the year. It is fascinating to see and hear how the troupe works together to bring these puppets to life. You haven't seen teamwork and discipline until you have seen one of... More 

5 Thank Kiku2
Vancouver, Washington
Level Contributor
83 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 27, 2016 via mobile

The National Bunraku Theater in Osaka is located on Nippombashi Street near the Nippombashi subway station. This is around the busy Dotonbori district. I had heard of the Bunraku art form many years ago, so this was one of the first places I "bee lined" toward upon our arrival in Osaka. Bunraku is a large sized puppet show. The puppets... More 

2 Thank John L
Level Contributor
166 reviews
47 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 26, 2016

If you are in Osaka and have the opportunity to see a real Bunraku performance at this venue - do it. The plays are rather long at around 4 hours which is a bit daunting,but there is plenty going on and it is very interesting to watch the narrator or singer(s) and shamisen players telling the story-even if you don't... More 

4 Thank geebee01
Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
Level Contributor
101 reviews
60 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 1, 2015

The Japanese puppetry is simply amazing. There is something very beautiful about seeing this age old art being so alive in the contemporary Japanese society today. If you are in town, you must not miss this unique opportunity!

2 Thank ElenSun-Hi

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