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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
Website
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Fee: Yes
Description:

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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Mesmerizing

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 starsReviewed yesterday
NGfromPGH
,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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97 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 35: English reviews
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

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 

Helpful?
Thank NGfromPGH
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
134 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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.

Helpful?
Thank Venkat C
Sacheon, South Korea
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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.

Helpful?
1 Thank Jillian T
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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 

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2 Thank ctro
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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

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2 Thank Pik-Kwan C
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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 

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4 Thank Kiku2
Vancouver, Washington
Level Contributor
83 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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 

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2 Thank John L
Sydney
Level Contributor
149 reviews
45 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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 

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2 Thank geebee01
Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
Level Contributor
101 reviews
60 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars 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!

Helpful?
2 Thank ElenSun-Hi
Ilkeston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
192 reviews
145 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 255 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2015

A 4 ½ hour Japanese puppet performance didn’t, initially, sound very thrilling – especially as the performances started at 11am and 4pm - but we thought we ought to sample it & booked online. We are so glad we did. The theatre is signposted from within Nipponbashi subway station is just a few minutes’ walk. The first thing we noticed... More 

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6 Thank Jeffrey F

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