Nanba Grand Kagetsu is the palace of laughter
When it comes to Osakans, they just love the banter of a conversation filled with humor. There is the boke (funny man) who does the interesting stuff and has the funny lines, and the tsukkomi (straight man) who quickly points out the mistakes and corrects them. Osakans think it’s normal to be the straight guy when you get hit with the funny and vice versa. “Yoshimoto” exists at the base of this “comic psychology” for these Osakans. Since its founding in the Meiji Era over 100 years ago, Yoshimoto Kogyo has been renowned for comedy and entertainment by turning out lots of popular artists in the Kansai and Kanto areas. Particularly with “Yoshimoto Shinkigeki” (Yoshimoto New Comedy) where comedians belonging to Yoshimoto Kogyo perform, it’s said to be the essence of Osakan comedy. The venue where that Yoshimoto Shinkigeki is performed is Nanba Grand Kagetsu.
Get well versed in manzai, rakugo and Osakan comedy at Shinkigeki
At Yoshimoto Shinkigeki which has also been called the eyes of NGK, performances are held twice on weekdays and 3-4 times on weekends and holidays. And before the performance, there is rakugo and manzai by famous artists before the main event. The plot of the Shinkigeki takes place at an inn or store, for example. Its particular feature is a simple story in which the performers confront an unforeseen accident. Each of the Shinkigeki members show off their own individual gags on a stage rife with improvisation. For the manzai, rakugo and other comic performances, the stage changes daily.
Enjoy finding souvenirs and Osakan cuisine
After getting to fully know the comedy, don’t forget to look for souvenirs. The “Koko ni mo Yotte Ya” (Drop By Here Too, Eh) shop on the 2nd floor starts off with Kansai area souvenirs with humorous and original goods all lined up! At “Yoshimoto Character Ningyo-yaki Castella” on the same floor, bean paste-filled sponge cake (ningyo-yaki) in the shape of Yoshimoto comedians is sold. The ningyo-yaki, in bite-sized pieces using plenty of milk and not so sweet, is a popular souvenir at Nanba Grand Kagetsu. Also, you have to check out “Chitose”, a venerable shop by the entrance that has continued to be loved by comedians. The “nikusui” soup with stock drawn from bonito and seaweed and plenty of beef and egg, along with the “kodama” rice with raw egg are the things to order. The lineup never stops from opening to closing every day. It’s recommended to fill up the stomach after laughing all day.