Sarah Kolinovsky/ABC
  • Geisha entertain their clients in the exclusive, members-only teahouses of Kyoto, Japan. The teahouses remain traditional and private – "Nightline's" cameras were only allowed in when the clients were away.
    Sarah Kolinovsky/ABC
  • Tourists and locals alike who cannot gain entry to the teahouses can sometimes catch a lucky glimpse of a geisha walking the streets of Kyoto as she moves from appointment to appointment.
    Sarah Kolinovsky/ABC
  • Tomitsuyu, in pink, is a maiko, or a geisha-in-training. A year ago, she was a regular teenager playing trombone in a community band, but now has a new instrument – this traditional drum.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • The teachers who give lessons to maiko, like this drum master, are responsible for maintaining the traditions of ancient Japan, even as those traditions fall out of favor. One hundred years ago, there were 80,000 geishas in Japan, but today, there are fewer than 2,000.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • Tomitsuyu says she grew up dreaming of becoming a geisha, the way many American girls dream of being princesses.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • When she’s on the streets of Kyoto, Tomitsuyu is often flocked by tourists and locals looking to snap photos of her. She says the experience makes her feel like she is Mickey Mouse at Disneyland, and that people forget she is training to be a professional entertainer.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • Geisha have their own stylists to help them dress in their complicated kimonos and fix their hair and makeup. Stylists are traditionally men, because working with the heavy kimonos requires a lot of strength.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • If you think high heels are hard to walk in, try these traditional geisha sandals, called "okobo," on for size.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • Geisha use a variety of skills to entertain clients, including dancing, and even playing drinking games. Alcohol flows freely for clients through the teahouses of Kyoto.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • Tomitsuyu, a geisha-in-training, is still a teenage girl underneath the makeup and kimono. She says she enjoys listening to Bruno Mars and misses wearing jeans and t-shirts.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC
  • The elegant kimonos, like couture gowns, can cost anywhere from hundreds to tens of thousands of dollars.
    Victoria Thompson/ABC