The hyōshigi(拍子木?) is a simple Japanesemusical instrument, consisting of two pieces of hardwood or bamboo that are connected by a thin ornamental rope. The clappers are played together or on the floor to create a cracking sound. Sometimes they are struck slowly at first, then faster and faster.
Hyoshigi are used in traditional Japanese theaters, such as Kabuki and Bunraku theater, to announce the beginning of a performance. The kyogen-kata usually plays the hyoshigi at the start of comedic plays. It can be used to attract the attention of the audience by conductors for theater and even athletic and juggling performances. Hyoshigi are also used to stress confusion  and other dramatic moments  in the play.