We had our annual chakai at the Maiden Theatre in the Botanic Gardens on Sunday, 13 October 2019.
We were fortunate enough to have beautiful weather. Our theme this year was Reiwa, the name of Japan’s new Imperial era.
As our theme was “Reiwa”, tea utensils having an auspicious meaning or a relationship to the Imperial family were chosen. Examples include a stand called Kotobiki-dana (Felicitation stand) and a tea container named Goshoguruma (Ox cart). There were six sessions starting from 11am as usual. For each session, temae people performed beautifully, while commentators provided detailed explanations and mizuya/hakobi people worked efficiently. With great teamwork, everything went smoothly on the day, and I believe our audience enjoyed the warm hospitality we provided in the traditional Japanese way. Thankyou to all the people who worked in the honseki section for your co-operation and dedication. Without your hard work, this event would not have been successful.
This year’s annual chakai titled “Reiwa Chakai“ celebrating the arrival of a new era in Japan. Reiwa is a combination of two Chinese characters chosen from the introduction of thirty-two poems about plum flowers in Manyoshuu — the oldest collection of poems in Japan. Eri means beautiful and wa means gentle and harmonious. The utensils were selected to enhance the feeling of celebration including the orchid which appears in the introduction and shou-chiku-bai. Shou-chiku-bai is the most popular auspicious trio. Shou is evergreen pine, the symbol of longevity and eternity. Chiku is a fast-growing bamboo. Bai is a plum which can flower even in snowy cold weather showing the power of life.
Seventeen members worked hard running the misonodana-seki. All of them did their best to complete their tasks. Everything went very smoothly and successfully thanks to everybody’s dedication.