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The Council for Cultural Affairs decided Wednesday to recommend that 37 folk performance arts be added to the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list.

The 37 traditional performing arts, including Bon odori dancing, that have been passed down for posterity in various parts in the country will be recommended to UNESCO collectively as furyu odori.

Chakkirako, a performing art from Miura, Kanagawa Prefecture, that has already been added to the UNESCO list will be included in the group.

The proposal will be submitted to UNESCO in late March following approval by the government.

A meeting of UNESCO’s intergovernmental committee in 2022 is expected to discuss whether to list furyu odori as intangible cultural heritage.

The group of performing arts includes Ayako Odori from the town of Manno in Kagawa Prefecture, Gujo Odori from Gujo in Gifu Prefecture and Rokusainenbutsu from the city of Kyoto.

All of the 37 folk performing arts are already registered as important intangible folklore cultural properties of the nation.

The arts, in which people in festive costumes dance to songs and music played with instruments such as the Japanese flute, aim to offer prayers for the souls of the dead and for rich harvests, rain or other wishes.

This year, 17 traditional construction methods for wooden buildings, which were recommended collectively by the government last year, will be screened for listing.

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