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Hiraki (開き)

Hiraki refers to the idea of release in vocals or forms. During the forms, or kata, the performer extends their arms to the side of their body, moves back a few steps, and then returns the open arms to the side of their body. The hiraki is often preceded by sashikomi or shikake, a form in which the performer takes a few steps forward while extending their hands. In this case, the sashikomi serves as tension, and the hiraki as release. In the vocals, for kotoba with no notes listed, the place where the accent falls within the phrase is set, and known as the hiraki.

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