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PERFORMANCE: Reflecting Rhythms: From Taiko to Tap with Kazunori Kumagai and Kaoru Watanabe / Houston, TX


This special collaboration that was well received by New Yorkers will come to Houston. The Japan Foundation and Asia Society Texas Center will co-present a performance by the award-winning tap dancer Kazunori Kumagai and the multi-instrumentalist/composer Kaoru Watanabe. Kumagai, who was dubbed the "Japanese Gregory Hines" by The Village Voice, tours all over the world and has won the Bessie Award 2016 for Outstanding Performer. Watanabe is acclaimed for his innovative approach to powerful Japanese drums. Watanabe was a performer and artistic director of the taiko ensemble Kodo for close to a decade. Both of these outstanding artists have devoted themselves to both traditional art forms and to exploring innovative expressions.

The performance takes place on June 1, 7pm at Asia Society Texas Center, 1370 Southmore Blvd., Houston, TX 77004. 

[Photos: (top) Kazunori Kumagai © Makoto Ebi / (bottom) Kaoru Watanabe © Yuki Kokubo]

EXHIBITION: 17th Tokyo-New York Ceramic Competition / New York, NY

05/30/2018 - 06/05/2018

Winning works of the 17th Tokyo-New York Ceramic Competition will be displayed at The Nippon Gallery at the Nippon Club. This annual competition encourages and honors the creativity of ceramic artists in New York and its sister city Tokyo. This exhibition is nominally supported by The Japan Foundation, New York.

The exhibition is on view from May 30 through June 5, 2018 at The Nippon Gallery at The Nippon Club, 145 W 57th St, New York, NY 10019.

PERFORMANCE: Midori Takada / New York, NY


The Kitchen presents a solo performance by masterful percussionist and composer Midori Takada, renowned for her pioneering virtuoso technique that distills rhythms from around the world into minimalist instrumental dreamscapes. This is a rare opportunity in New York to experience one of Takada’s completely unique and transformative live performances at an intimate venue known for nurturing the creation and presentation of new works in multidisciplinary art and experimental music. This event is nominally supported by The Japan Foundation, New York.

This performace takes place on May 21, 2018, 8pm at The Kitchen, 512 West 19th Street, New York, NY. $25 General / $20 Members.

[Photo © Mark Slater]

CULTURAL EVENT: Japan Day @ Central Park


Japan Day will feature a wide range of Japanese traditional and family-friendly activities, popular Japanese cuisine, and stage performances throughout the day. This event is supported through the Center for Global Partnership's Education Grant program.

The event takes place on May 13, 9:30am at the Bandshell Area of Central Park (New York, NY). The main entrance is on 69th Street and 5th Avenue

FILM: Everything Goes Wrong / New York, NY


Japan Society presents a screening of Seijun Suzuki's Everything Goes Wrong (1960). This film about a rebellious teen tapped into the restlessness, frustration and violent energy of Japan's postwar youth with a pronounced visual style that signaled the emergence of the Japanese New Wave. This screening is co-presented by The Japan Foundation.

The screening takes place on May 11, 7pm at Japan Society, 333 East 47th Street, New York, NY 10017.

[Image: © 1960 Nikkatsu Corporation]

PERFORMANCE: Time's Journey Through a Room / New York, NY

05/10/2018 - 06/10/2018

PlayCo presents an English production of Time's Journey Through a Room written by internationally renowned playwright/director and founder of the theater company chelfitsch Toshiki Okada. Marking PlayCo's third collaboration with playwright Toshiki Okada, translator Aya Ogawa and director Dan Rothenberg, this production continues their exploration of his work. This piece reflects the evolution of Okada's writing in the years since the 2011 earthquake in Japan. On May 12, Toshiki Okada will be in person for a post-performance conversation. On May 13, Okada will lead an intensive workshop for actors, choreographers, dancers and physical theater artists at Japan Society. This performance is supported through the JFNY Grant for the Arts and Culture. 

Get special discount tickets on PlayCo's website with the code JF30.

The performance takes place from May 10 to June 10, 2018 at A.R.T./New York Theatres, Mezzanine Theatre, 502 W 53rd St, New York, NY 10019.

FILM: Dear Etranger / Chicago, IL


Yuko Mishima's Dear Etranger (2017) will be screened at the semi-annual film festival Asian Pop-Up Cinema. This film explores issues surrounding the growing number of mixed-marriage families in Japan. It is a touching meditation on love and marriage and what it truly means to be family. This screening is supported through the JFNY Grant for Arts and Culture.

The screening takes place on May 2, 2018, 7pm at AMC River East 21, 322 E Illinois St, Chicago, IL 60611.

CULTURAL EVENT: 2018 Biennial Ikebana Exhibit / Alexandria, VA

05/01/2018 - 05/06/2018

Art and nature come together as The Art League welcomes back the Washington, DC branch of The Sogetsu School for the 17th Biennial Ikebana Show. This exhibition is supported through the JFNY Grant for Arts and Culture.

The exhibiiton is on view from May 1 through May 6, 2018 at The Art League, 105 North Union Street, Alexandria, VA 22314.

[Image George Miller, The Art League]

FILM: A Scene at the Sea / Chicago, IL


The Chicago Film Society presents a screening of Takeshi Kitano's A Scene at the Sea (1991). This minimalist film about a deaf garbage-collector who dreams of becoming a surf champions is one of the most poignant works Kitano made. This screening is co-presented by The Japan Foundation.

This screening takes place on April 30, 7pm at Music Box Theatre, 3733 N Southport Ave, Chicago, IL 60613.

CULTURAL EVENT: Sakura Matsuri 2018 / Brooklyn, NY

04/28/2018 - 04/29/2018

Sakura Matsuri offers over 60 performances and demonstrations that showcase traditional and contemporary Japanese culture. The festival celebrates the Japanese cultural tradition of enjoying each moment during the cherry blossom season. The tea ceremony programs at the Sakura Matsuri are supported through the JFNY Grant for Arts and Culture.

The tea ceremony programs take place on April 28 & 29 at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, 990 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225.

[Photo: Tea masters Soumi Shimizu and Sōkyo Shimizu, leaders of the Sohenryu-Style Tea Ceremony. Photo by Liz Ligon. Courtesy of Brooklyn Botanic Garden.]

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