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Miss Sansa dancers chosen for festival 2024

The Yomiuri Shimbun
From the first row on the left: Kaho Kamihira and Sayuri Otsubo; Back row: Kiko Kawamura, Kanako Hironai and Ruriko Sotoyama

MORIOKA — The dancers for this year’s “Miss Sansa Odori” have been announced. The final judging of the five who will lead the Morioka Sansa Odori Festival parade took place on May 11 at Plaza Odette in Morioka.

Candidates for the position must be women who are single and between the ages of 18 and 28. They must live in Morioka or neighboring towns and villages. This year there were 64 candidates – 16 more than last year – and the 12 who passed the preliminary screening went on to the final jury, which was open to the public.

The five dancers are Kaho Kamihira, a student at Iwate University, 20; association worker Sayuri Otsubo, 23; company employees Kiko Kawamura, 24, and Kanako Hironai, 25; and Iwate Medical University sixth-year student Ruriko Sotoyama, 23.

“It was a complete surprise and honestly I’m happy,” says Kamihira, who has never danced Sansa before. “I want to do my best so that all five of us can dance in harmony.”

They will begin practicing in June in preparation for their debut performance at an event at Morioka’s Mitsuishi Shrine in late July. After the festival in August, they will continue to promote Morioka and Iwate tourism in Japan and beyond.

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