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The World Shakuhachi Festival 2018 brings together many of the world’s best performers of the shakuhachi, the Japanese bamboo flute, from all continents. It presents, at highest level, a broad cross-section of traditional and contemporary solo and ensemble music for shakuhachi. As an instrument, the shakuhachi is known by many people, but without being named or recognised. It has put in appearances in many film soundtracks, including the final Harry Potter films, and is on the other hand enjoyed by many because of its deeply meditative quality. The instrument is, however capable of a broad range of music, from quiet to energetic and stimulating, alone, and grouped with other instruments, from Japan and elsewhere. The broad spectrum of its music will appeal to music lovers from all walks of life and with all tastes, from traditional to modern, from meditative to ‘world music’.
The WSF2018 will offer an unique opportunity to experience the world of shakuhachi close up and in a variety not seen before in the UK or Europe. Our schedule is bursting with a wide range of concerts, workshops, lectures, talks, exhibitions, screenings and informal gatherings, bringing together around 40 top-level shakuhachi performers from Japan and another 40 from other countries to play and teach. Whether you are a seasoned shakuhachi professional, an enthusiastic hobbyist or simply interested in discovering new cultural and musical territory, WSF2018 is the place to be.
The Art of Gaman is a stunning new play. It was a finalist in the American Playwriting Foundation’s prestigious Relentless Award.
Tomomi, a young Japanese woman stands at the hull of a ship staring out across the water to her new American life in the years prior to the Hiroshima bombing. There are stars in her eyes and a crackling radio pulled to her chest as she drifts towards a country, and a future, that resists her arrival.
The Art of Gaman is an aching exploration of displacement and loss of cultural identity when you find yourself in a country that considers you an enemy. When forgetting your past is shameful, but remembering brings even greater pain, Tomomi must harness the strength to find beauty in the struggle and carve out a new life for herself and be true to who she really is.
The Art of Gaman was one of 6 plays shortlisted for the American Playwriting Foundation’s prestigious Relentless Award.
Starting the 12th October and running until 15th December, Adam Isfendiyar will be holding a photography exhibition about the life of an Ainu (indigenous people of Japan) man in Hokkaido. He has been working on this project for over 2 years with Kenji Matsuda, giving an insight into the modern Ainu and the continuing legacy of the recent past since the Japanese took over Hokkaido at the end of the 19th century. It will be showing at The Brunei Gallery, SOAS and entry is free!
Saké is a versatile beverage that can complement food just as well as wine. It is also an excellent drink to be enjoyed on its own. No wonder, then, that this national drink of Japan is growing in popularity in the West.
At the event, a saké expert from VSF Wine Education will showcase 6 of the sakés from VSF Shop’s portfolio to demystify the wonderful world of this Japanese drink.
VSF Wine Education is the first and only wine school in London dedicated to the Chinese and Japanese communities. Accredited by the Wine & Spirits Education Trust (WSET) as an Approved Programme Provider, the school has been actively cultivating wine, spirits and saké appreciation and enjoyment in London.
Apart from running training courses, VSF Shop sells a wide range of sakés, from the highly sought-after Dassai (獺祭) and Tatenokawa (楯野川) to artisanal labels such as Konishi (小西酒造), Aizu Homare (会津 ほまれ) and Hayashi Honten (林本店).
On the day of the event, you’ll be able to sample various styles of Japanese saké (Junmai Daiginjo, Daiginjo, Ginjo, Honzojo, Futsushu, etc.) as well as an assortment of Japanese food to pair with the tipples.
You can also purchase your newly found favourite saké on-site at discounted prices. Whether you are a saké enthusiast or absolute beginner, this is a great chance for you to taste different styles of saké hailing from Japan in one go!
At the door: £45 / person
Online reservation: £35 / person
Early bird tickets (limited quantity): £30 / person
The event “Understanding & Appreciating Japanese Saké (Rice Wine)” will be held on Saturday 13th October 2018 from 2-3pm, 3-4pm and 4-5pm (3 sessions), with max. 18 persons per session. For enquiries, please email us at email@example.com. Visitors are encouraged to take the Overground (Rotherhithe Station) or Underground (Canada Water Station) to arrive at the venue. Anyone under the age of 18 years old will not be permitted entry.
World Rugby Museum adult ticket £12.50. Concessions available.
It’s super easy to get started with making books at home, and there’s loads to explore once you get going. In this two hour workshop you will learn how to make a simple book using a Japanese 3-hole binding structure.
You will come away from the workshop with a book, some basic theory and technique, and some pointers on next projects to think about.
Like sushi and sashimi? Why not take our one-day sake course to understand the different styles of saké and get top tips to pair your Japanese dishes with the right saké? We’ll also teach you how to make a bottle of mirin (a condiment similar to sake) for you to take home and pair with your food!
17 March, 9am to 5pm. Details & registration: https://bit.ly/2LXnyDl
#VSFWineEducation #Sake #Saké #Nihonshu #FoodPairing
London’s newest flower school is up and running at the world famous Battersea Power Station.
With classes available for all ages and abilities, a session with one of our experienced, fully qualified instructors is an ideal introduction to floristry. Established in 1876 and with experience as a luxury florist for over 140 years, a class with one of our tutors is an opportunity to learn with the world’s best.
Organising a party or corporate event? Our state-of-the-art facilities offer groups the perfect setting for an informal, fun and informative session. Get the creative spark flying and learn about different floristry techniques, flower types and design methods. Produce your own bouquet to take home, design wedding flowers and complete a composition of your very own making.
With a number of different course options, from single sessions to longer 3 week courses, all our activities can be tailored to your needs.
About Moyses Stevens Flowers:
Informed by history, inspired by the modern world, Moyses Stevens has long been a driving force in British floristry, constantly exploring new styles while retaining a core commitment to creating beautiful, classical designs. In 2019, we are as dedicated to producing incredible bouquets as we were at our conception in 1876.
With six stores across London’s most chic neighbourhoods, including a flagship design school at the redeveloped Battersea Power Station, Moyses Stevens are at the forefront of the capital’s burgeoning floristry scene.
Learn everything about saké in a saké brewery in action, right in London!
VSF Wine Education is joining hands with Kanpai Sake Brewery (the UK’s first sake brewery) to run this course that will provide you with a detailed understanding of the production methods that affect the style, quality and price of saké. Upon completion you will be able to assess sakés accurately, and use this information and your understanding of sakés to make authoritative recommendations. 18+19+25+26 May 2019. Details & registration: https://bit.ly/2seHf0a
#Nihonshu #Sake #Saké #London
Grimeborn Opera Festival
8pm 23rd August
3pm 24th August
8pm 24th August
Origami and music. A multi-media opera installation. Verity Lane‘s two-part project draws on her 10 years’ experience of living in Japan, exploring classical Japanese traditions with a uniquely avant-garde twist.
A brand-new performance project with music, stories and concept by Verity Lane, Origami Soundscapes: Flower, Bird, Wind & Moon explores ancient symbolism and Japanese birdsong, featuring a large-scale origami performance by Coco Sato, percussion, shakuhachi and storytelling.
The Crane reimagines a Japanese folk story about a magical crane that takes human form, set around Hokkaido’s Otowa Bridge. This mystical opera installation explores traditional Japanese aesthetics through a blend of Noh theatre conventions, traditional and contemporary dance, avant-garde music and animation.
Sung in English and Japanese without surtitles.
Music and Libretto (English and Japanese) by Verity Lane
Supported by Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation
Verity Lane/music, words, creative directer
Coco Sato/Giant Origami
Born in Tottenham and spending nearly a decade in Japan, visual artist, composer and writer Verity Lane specialises in creating highly visual performance installations for traditional Japanese instruments. and beyond.
Her recent multi-media projects include A Thousand Bamboo in a Dancing Wind (performance installation for 300 shakuhachi, 2 dancers, projection and performance poetry, commissioned by The World Shakuhachi Festival, held at Goldsmiths, 2018), Yugenism: Animated Soundscapes of the Japanese Sublime (supported by Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation and Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation), and Japanese Sandscapes: The Tale of Mt Fuji where she worked with artists including Ko Ishikawa (sho/Reigakusha), Etsuko Takezawa (koto/shamisen) and Kaho Aso (traditional Japanese dance/kotsuzumi). Both projects saw Lane launch herself within London’s avant garde music scene, selling out venues across London.
Coco Sato is an award-winning Japanese artist based in the UK. Her work uses origami to change the way people see the world.
Mirei Yazawa is a performance artist based in London.
Beibei Wang is a genre defying percussionist based in London.
Tomoko Komura is a London based performer from Japan, trained at the London International School of Performing Arts with an MFA in Lecoq-based Actor-Created Theatre (2006). She has performed and toured in shows by award-winning theatre companies such as Theatre Ad Infinitum (Ballad of the Burning Star), Theatre Témoin (Jukai) and Out of Chaos (Out of Chaos).
Kiku Day is a shakuhachi player based in Denmark.
Hester Dart is a London based contralto and graduate from the University of Leeds. They study with Prof. Neil Baker and are currently finishing their second year at the Morley College Opera School. Hester is particularly interested in promoting the work of
LGBTQ+ composers and musicians. They would like to contribute towards a more inclusive and accessible environment within classical music and opera.
Rowan O’Brien is a renowned animator and 3D artist from the West Coast of Ireland. He mixes sketches, objects, computer animation, and video in his work. He has screened and exhibited work across Europe, South Korea and Japan, where he lived and studied Japanese fabric craft known as oshie.