Ogiri (Professional rakugo storytellers play on words.) (大喜利)

Ogiri (pronounced as ogiri or okiri)

An item that is presented at the end of the day's performance. Kiri (the concluding segment of a Noh play which combines chant and dance) means the end, and the word Kiri is expressed in writing by using Chinese characters of good meanings with a superstitious view of bringing good fortune.

In Kabuki (traditional drama performed by male actors), shosagoto (a dance in Kabuki) is especially presented in most cases.

In Yose (storyteller theater), a theatrical entertainment is performed last often as an alternative to rakugo (comic story telling) or kodan storytelling when the last performer does neither of them. It was played by two or more performers, and a brief story (comic) or a riddle was performed in response to a given topic. It is sometimes performed in the presence of an emcee. The details are described in this section.

It was originally performed last as a bonus for the audience in the theater and was a sideshow act in which more than one performer came on the stage again after all the other performances, and competed with each other on their performance based on a topic given by the audience.

This is relevant for encores in concerts, and phrases such as 'We would like to ask you the audience how you liked the show,' which is still often used on the stage in present theatrical entertainment, may have originated from the concept of the bonus.

The name Ogiri is derived from a word 'ogiri' or 'okiri' according to the Chinese characters and means the last item of the show in classical Japanese popular performing arts including Noh (traditional masked dance-drama), Joruri (ballad drama), and Kabuki.
Actually, the word 'kiri' comes from the phrase 'from the start to the last' and means 'the last.'
The Chinese characters for 'kiri' were applied just to signify that the audience enjoys the play and the performers enjoy the profit.

In these days, the word 'Ogiri' is associated with the item 'Ogiri' in "Shoten" (a TV entertainment program that presents shows such as rakugo stories or manzai, and comic dialogues) that is broadcasted by Nippon Television Network Corporation. Also, an item called 'the Ogiri style' was derived from that program and has been popular among many variety programs and Owarai (comedians show) events where comedians, entertainers, and Rakugo story tellers give comical responses to various topics they had prepared in advance and compete with each other on their sense of Owarai. Based on the program called Shoten, the idea of giving one more zabuton (traditional Japanese cushions used to sit on the floor) to a performer that gives a good comical response and the use of a flip chart and prop, etc., have become common.

Popular topics in Ogiri
AIUEO compositions
Playing riddles
Senryu (humorous or ironical haiku), Tanka, and Dodoitsu (a type of Japanese songs) etc.
Illustrations and songs
Stories in which the last thing that you might want to have or those things that you might like to have are mentioned
Stories in which a question about C, which is neither A nor B, is made; for example, 'This seems like such and such but is not such and such, and it seems like such and such but is not such and such; now I will ask what it is, and the answer is thus and thus.'
That is what it is called in Kamigata (the Kyoto-Osaka region) because the phrase "Benben," an onomatopoetic expression of Gidayu shamisen (shamisen used for Gidayu when reciting dramatic narratives), is uttered as an interjection.

[Original Japanese]