JapanOC has arrived! Following on the success of last year’s festival celebrating Chinese culture, JapanOC was made possible from an amazing collaboration between Henry Segerstrom, Carnegie Hall and the Philharmonic Society of Orange County. This unprecedented festival of Japanese culture will call Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa home through April.
It’s a thrilling season-long festival that explores the fascinating diversity of Japanese and Japanese-American arts and culture with world-class classical musicians, traditional and contemporary dance, jazz and traditional Japanese musical performances. There will also be intriguing films, lectures, readings, museum exhibits, and more.
Highlights from the festival will include world-renowned violinist Midori in recital joined by pianist Robert McDonald, (March 11 at 8 p.m. Samueli Theater); one of the most innovative ukulele players in the world, Jake Shimabukuro, with the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, playing jazz, blues, funk, classical, bluegrass (March 24 at 8 p.m., Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall); and the award-winning Tokyo String Quartet (April 19 at 8 p.m. at Samueli Theater).
You can also attend tributes to composer Tōru Takemitsu (Dec. 19 at 8 p.m., Samueli Theater); and “Noguchi East Meets West” featuring approximately 50 sculptures and 50 drawings, spanning more than 60 years of Isamu Noguchi’s career (Feb. 27 to May 15 at Laguna Art Museum.)
This week you can catch the U.S. premiere of “Shodo Girls!!” exploring the dynamic art of Japanese performance calligraphy Tuesday at 8 p.m., Regency South Coast Village in Santa Ana. Tickets cost $12. The Orange County Film Society will showcase the contemporary Japanese film crafted by Japan’s leading filmmakers, followed by an interactive post-screening discussion.
We don’t want you to miss a thing, and you can find the entire JapanOC calendar here, including venues, tickets and more.
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