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This Week in Japan, March 5-11, 2018

Every Monday we serve top picks for this week’s events in Japan. To list your event, contact the editor of GaijinPot.

By 1 min read

From a traditional doll stroll to cutting-edge performance art, there’s something for everyone across the archipelago. If you’re planning or organizing something cool, send us an email to have your event listed here.

Monday: Doll stroll (Nara)

Hina Doll Festival

Each year in spring, Japanese families celebrate Girls’ Day by displaying hina ningyo dolls. In the historic village of Takatori-cho in Nara Prefecture, over 100 families have developed a tradition of showcasing gorgeous hina dolls for tourists. Visitors stroll the atmospheric street leading to the Takatori Castle Ruins, where wood houses with black tiled roofs crowd the roadside. On weekends, the village comes alive with tea ceremonies, music, a local farmers’ market and many other attractions. Festival maps are available at Tsubosakayama Station.

When & Where
Feb 26-March 31
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Kintetsu Line, Tsubosakayama station, Nara Pref. - Map
More Info

Tuesday:  Conceptual art (Osaka)


The History of Space-Time 3 Stages Accomplished by Cosmic Sensibility, or Infinitely Distant Memories

Artcourt Gallery presents The History of Space-Time, a solo exhibition of new works by Hitoshi Nomura. With a unique perspective that sees the passage of time in objects, Nomura pursues possibilities through his engagement in a conceptual dialogue with nature. He uses photography as his primary method, capturing the movement of objects and the order of the cosmos, while also working with meteorites, DNA, and plant fossils to shine a light on life and the origin of the universe.For this exhibition, Nomura has chosen three events that he believes are the most significant in the Earth’s history, which spans from the birth of the universe 13.8 billion years ago to the birth of mankind. He has created around 25 works related to the time, light, and phenomena of each event that will all be displayed together.

When & Where
11 a.m.-7 p.m.
7 p.m.
Art Court Gallery, Osaka - Map
More Info

Wednesday: Terror train (Tokyo)

Onryu Haisen VR (Haunted Abandoned Railway Line VR)

This VR attraction at Tokyo’s suburban Toshimaen amusement park brings together two of Japan’s favorite obsessions: railroads and revenge ghosts. The pitch is that you are a railway inspector on an abandoned line when you are attacked by an evil spirit. You must get the better of it by exorcizing the demon while simultaneously (and in diligent Japanese fashion) accomplishing your goal of inspecting the tracks. In Japanese only.

When & Where
Feb 28-March 8
10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Toshimaen, Tokyo - Map
More Info

Thursday: Tradition meets avant-garde (Tokyo)

Setsuhi Shiraishi calligraphy performance

Calligrapher Setsuhi Shiraishi will showcase “live calligraphy” in a multidisciplinary performance that will also feature avant-garde dancer Yu Kimura, pianist Soleiyu Eye and trumpeter Yusuke Kawamura. Shiraishi has presented live calligraphy worldwide, and specializes in shodo, a distinctly Japanese form of the art. She wields an ink-dipped brush to create fantastical Chinese kanji and Japanese kana characters, producing large-scale works in a performance setting.

When & Where
March 8
8 p.m.
Atelier Q, Tokyo - Map
More Info

Friday: Guitars plus (Fukuoka)

Anla Courtis

Argentine guitarist Anla Courtis of Argentine experimental music group Reynols will perform live in Fukuoka. Hailing from Buenos Aires, Anla Courtis studied classical guitar, piano, theory and composition. He possesses a degree in Communication Science from the University of Buenos Aires, where he presents an annual music workshop. Courtis has played electric guitar in a range of bands and in 1993 founded Reynols, issuing over 100 CDs, records and tapes worldwide. Backing him are local acts Jyurin, S/T, Tonchi Pickles, Semi and Shayne Bowden.

When & Where
March 9
8 p.m.
IAF Shop, Fukuoka - Map
More Info

Saturday: Teutonic beats  (Tokyo)

REBOOT 20th Anniversary

Evergreen Japanese techno event Reboot celebrates two decades of scene-leading beats ’n’ bleeps. Helmed by veteran DJs and promoters Q’hey and Mayuri, the anniversary event welcomes to the decks special guest, producer Sian. The Dublin-born DJ runs the cutting-edge imprint Octopus, and blends influences ranging from entomology, cosmology and marine biology, to the social impact of the rave generation into his hypnotic productions.

When & Where
March 10
10 p.m.-5 a.m.
Contact, Tokyo - Map
More Info

Sunday: Trial by fire (Tokyo)

Hiwatari-sai (Fire-walking Festival at Mt. Takao)

Takaosan Yakuoin Temple atop Tokyo’s Mt. Takao holds its annual fire-walking festival. At the festival, believers first pray for the safety of family, traffic and body and then follow yamabushi (Shugendo practicing monks) to walk barefoot over a sacred fire that is smoldering. Spectators may also participate in the barefoot walking after the fire has been put out. By that time, the actual temperature of the path is only slightly warm to step on and there is no worry of burning their feet. If you would like to participate, it is recommended to bring a wet towel or something else to clean your feet with.

When & Where
March 11
1 p.m.
Takaosan Yakuoin Temple - Map
More Info

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