Wakasosho Confirmation Announcement Kencha-shiki and Debut Chakai

On Friday, October 9, 2020, a kencha-shiki tea dedication ceremony to announce the confirmation of Tanshinsai SEN Soshi as Wakasosho, the official Urasenke successor-to-be, was held at Daitokuji's Jukoin sub-temple, in the Kita-ku ward of Kyoto city. It was attended by about 90 guests, including Princess Akiko of Mikasa, KUJO Michinari, who is the 36th-gen. head of the Kujo family line and is an Urasenke adviser, Daisosho SEN Genshitsu, Iemoto SEN Soshitsu and Mrs. Sen, along with relatives, members of the Urasenke Foundation board of elders (robun), Urasenke Foundation/Urasenke Tankokai Federation directors, and others. The scale of the event was greatly reduced from the original plan, with temperature checks, hand sanitizing, and social distancing measures in place, in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The ceremony began at 9:30 A.M. Princess Akiko of Mikasa entered the main hall, followed by Wakasosho Tanshinsai with Daisosho, Iemoto, and Mrs. Sen. Wakasosho then sat in the tea-making space, carefully prepared koicha, and offered it to the image of Sen Rikyu. Following the sutra reading and Wakasosho's lighting of incense, the kencha-shiki came to a close with greetings to the attendees by Iemoto, Daisosho, and Wakasosho.

Wakasosho was then interviewed by the press. When asked about his future aspirations, he replied, "The way Tea is practiced these days is undergoing changes, and the sensibilities of the people of the Reiwa era — particularly young people, myself included — are changing. I want to keep that which is good while reconsidering that which no longer fits, and maintain a good balance in doing so."

The confirmation debut chakai was held in several locations within the Daitokuji compound. There were approximately 300 participants, including the kencha-shiki attendees as well as Urasenke councillors, coucillor representatives, special councillors, representatives of Tankokai chapters and of groups which study directly under Iemoto (jikimon), distinguished masters (meiyo shihan), and other such people from across western Japan. There were five separate tea venues (seki), respectively hosted by Konnichian, the Robun (Urasenke elders), the Gyoteibu (Konnichian corps of deputy tea masters), the Jikimon (groups which study directly under Iemoto), and the Tankokai Youth Division National Committee.

◇The Konnichian venue (Jukoin)

◇The Robun venue (Soken'in)

◇The Gyoteibu venue (Hoshun'in)

◇The Jikimon venue (Sangen'in)

◇The Tankokai Youth Division National Committee venue(Zuiunken)

On Tuesday, October 13, 2020, an announcement kencha-shiki and debut chakai were also held at Meiji Grand Shrine in Shibuya, Tokyo.