Kabuki is one of several varieties of traditional Japanese theatre, dating from the Edo period. Like other Japanese theatrical styles, it uses music and musical sounds to help tell the story. Not surprisingly, a number of these sounds have found their way into {{Anime}}.

The most common Kabuki sounds to be heard in anime are:
* ''Tsuzumi''. A drumlike instrument that makes a "pon!" sound. In anime it is frequently employed to punctuate a joke or humorous moment, often in combination with a man's voice making an "Ooowoooh!" sound (also from Kabuki). A very traditional instrument, its sound is considered emblematic of traditional Japanese culture as a whole. Although they sound alike, do not mistake the "pon!" of a ''tsuzumi'' for the noise of TheThingThatGoesDoink.
* ''Okawa''. A drum that sounds a lot like a woodblock when struck. In anime one hears either one strike or two quick strikes.

To learn more about Kabuki, visit [[http://www.kabuki21.com this site]].



[[folder: Anime ]]

* ''Anime/TenchiMuyo'' punctuates many of its jokes with Kabuki sounds, and the ''tsuzumi'' and ''okawa'' are heard in the EyeCatch.
* ''Anime/{{Gasaraki}}'' uses Kabuki (and Noh) elements in its [[AnimeThemeSong theme song]] and throughout the series proper.
* ''Anime/SaberMarionetteJ [=To X=]'' emphasizes some of its funnier moments with Kabuki sounds, particularly series of rapid ''tsuzumi'' strikes.
* The 2006 {{OVA}} {{Reboot}} of ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'' has used ''tsuzumi'' strikes to punctuate Setsuna's more {{samurai}}-like moments.
* The anime ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' makes use of Kabuki sounds in background themes. Often taken up a notch with Jiraiya, who not only dresses like someone right out of Kabuki theatre, but also has a habit of announcing himself using common mannerisms. He also moves like a Kabuki actor, most notably the hopping step and slow hand wave.
* Used in the beginning and the end of the 2nd ''Anime/VampirePrincessMiyu'' OAV.
* ''ANime/{{Inuyasha}}'' used Kabuki sounds frequently to establish mood, particularly appropriate given its Feudal Japanese setting.
** Considering the [[ImpossiblyCoolClothes stage clothes]] and stylized fights, they might as well be actually performing kabuki.
* Whenever Kumadori from ''Manga/OnePiece'' speaks, he speaks in verse, and kabuki sounds play in the background.
* Constantly in ''Anime/{{Mononoke}}'' and ''Anime/AyakashiSamuraiHorrorTales''.
* In ''Anime/DigimonTamers'', these sounds accompany the kitsune-themed Renamon's evolution into Kyuubimon.
** In the original Japanese version of ''Anime/DigimonAdventure02'' Hawkmon's evolution to Shurimon is accompanied by Kabuki sounds (sometimes hard to hear over the insert music playing), and Shurimon finishes the evolution footage by striking a classic Kabuki pose (again, a little difficult to recognize since he has shurikens for hands).
* Given that ''Manga/NininGaShinobuden'' is about ninja, it was inevitable that these show up a lot.
* ''Manga/AiYoriAoshi'' likes to use bells for its Kaoi moments.
* ''Manga/SayonaraZetsubouSensei'' thrives on them.
* Can be heard in Japan's ImageSong in ''Webcomic/AxisPowersHetalia''.
* Used in ''{{Franchise/Anpanman}}'' for the Den Den Troupe, a Kabuki troupe, and also for Princess Shirataki, who's servant, Shungiku-san, carries a tsuzumi with him for their travels.


[[folder: Film ]]

* Dr. Furano in ''Film/VampireGirlVsFrankensteinGirl'' conducts his experiments wearing a full Kabuki get-up, so naturally these are heard in the background.


[[folder: Live-Action Television ]]

* The Dum Dum sting from ''Franchise/LawAndOrder'' has possibly evolved from here.
* The Rangers from ''Series/NinpuuSentaiHurricaneger'' had Kabuki-sounds during their transformation sequences.
** Similarly, the [[Series/SamuraiSentaiShinkenger Shinkengers]]' [[TransformationTrinket Shodouphones]] make kabuki noises after being used to draw magical kanji in the air.
** Also [[Series/ZyudenSentaiKyoryuger Utsusemimaru]] Theme also featured kabuki noises when he first morph into ''[[Main/SixthRanger Kyoryu Gold]]''.


[[folder: Musical ]]

* Used in the Kabuki-styled musical ''Theatre/PacificOvertures'', though not frequently.
* [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r0FVIwLE0Aw This]] ''{{Touhou}}'' remix of Yuugi's theme features the "oowooooh" guy.
* When Music/DavidByrne was commissioned to provide interstitial scenes (i.e. "knee plays") for a Robert Wilson stage show, his initial idea was to score them with traditional kabuki percussion. He got partway through, then decided a different approach was needed. The finished version of ''The Knee Plays'' was brass band music. However, the 2007 CD reissue includes five selections of Byrne's original kabuki score, as bonus tracks.


[[folder: Video Games ]]

* Used in the "Sushi-Go-Round" minigame in ''VideoGame/PokemonStadium'', and "Clear Cut Challenge" in ''Pokémon Stadium 2''
* ''VideoGame/FatalFury Special'' uses this in Geese's CPU stage, and ''Real Bout Fatal Fury Special'' has a BonusBoss fight with him as well in his rooftop pagoda. The intro to the fights has several doors sliding open, punctuated with ''okawa'' beats, and the fight music itself (titled "Soy Sauce for Geese") has several tsuzumi beats and the "Ooowooh" voice as well (at least in the RBS version).
** Also from SNK, at least half of the ''VideoGame/SamuraiShodown'' soundtrack is entirely played with traditional Kabuki instruments, in keeping with the general mood of the game (especially where Kyoshiro is concerned, since he's a Kabuki actor). [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7oNxnlg7oI Behold.]]
* The Kyoto stage and Yoshimitsu's forest stage from the first 2 ''{{Tekken}}'' stages with "Ooowooh" to boot. Also, Baek's stage in the second game.
* ''{{Okami}}'' uses a lot of the drum sounds, as well as several Kabuki-style shouts.
* [[VideoGame/StreetFighter E. Honda's]] theme. He's basically the first ever Kabuki-Sumo wrestler. You can hear some ''tsuzumi'' sounds in Ryu's theme as well, though he doesn't have the whole kabuki thing going.
* The various musical themes for the eponymous mask of ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaMajorasMask'' invove eldritch, discordant yet somehow still Kabuki-esque sounds.
** WordOfGod actually states that the music in Majora's Mask was based on Chinese opera.
* In ''VideoGame/{{WarioWare}} D.I.Y.'', one of the drum sets in the music maker is a Japanese-themed set which includes Kabuki sounds.
* In ''The New VideoGame/{{Tetris}}'', the song "Japan" is made entirely of various kabuki sound effects to form a funk/techno hybrid.
* In the ''ShirenTheWanderer'' series, set in feudal Japan, this is used a ''lot''.
* Plugging in four controllers in to a [[UsefulNotes/NintendoGameCube Gamecube]], holding the Z button down on all of them, and starting up the console will play a tsuzumi accompanied by the "Ooowoooh!" noise instead of the normal start up sounds.
* In ''VideoGame/PowerStone'', The Mutsu stage featured the [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JkXWVQ1Y_T0 "Ooowoooh!"]] sound from Tsuzumi in the beginning of the theme .


[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* ''WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles2003'' uses these sounds, especially in relation to Leonardo or [[OldMaster Splinter]]. The "Ooowoooh!" noise is practically [[BigBad The Shredder's]] {{leitmotif}}.