Japanese culture in spotlight from March 2-3

THE Embassy of Japan in Brunei Darussalam will hold ‘Japanese Language and Culture Week 2019’ from March 2 to 3 at Times Square Shopping Centre.

The two-day event is open to the public free of charge to introduce traditional and contemporary Japanese culture and lifestyles, as well as promote the Japanese language through stage performances and booths.

The stage performances include dance, singing and a showcase of the Japanese martial art of judo. Booths will provide information on scholarships to Japan, Japanese language classes at the IBTE-CET and a variety of examples of Japanese culture.

The Embassy of Japan will conduct Japanese cooking demonstrations and workshops (sushi and sakura mochi) on stage. Sakura mochi, also known as cherry blossom sweet rice cake is a traditional Japanese spring-time sweet.

At the embassy booth, there will be an activity using origami, the traditional Japanese paper craft, and a workshop of Tsumami Zaiku which is a traditional Japanese craft involving small, square-cut pieces of cloth that are pinched and folded with tweezers. There will be a workshop on how to craft hair accessories.

Sakura mochi and hair accessories are associated with an annual Japanese celebration called Japanese Doll Festival or girls’ day on March 3. The embassy will display several plastic scale models called Gunpla which is from one of the most popular anime series in Japan, Mobile Suit Gundam.

Also appearing at the event is a unique instrumental musician Gakuzinzan from Japan. He will perform live with a bamboo flute (called shakuhachi) which is a traditional Japanese instrument. His activities in Japan and across the world have been highly recognised and he has received many awards including the Japanese Education Minister’s award.

The event is held in cooperation with Times Square, the Japan Foundation, the Continuing Education and Training Division of the Institute of Brunei Technical Education (IBTE-CET) of the Ministry of Education, the Brunei Association of Japan Alumni (BAJA), the Japan-East Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths (JENESYS) Alumni, the Ship for Southeast Asian and Japanese Youth Programme (SSEAYP) International Brunei (BERSATU), and Brunei-Japan Friendship Association (BJFA) Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) and Universiti Teknologi Brunei (UTB) Chapters.