Monday, March 21, 2016

UPMC Shadyside Cherry Blossom Festival, April 15.

late-Spring 2015.

Invitations went out last week for the UPMC Shadyside Cherry Blossom Festival on April 15. A Facebook event page has an overview:
This annual transformation of nature will be celebrated on Friday, April 15, during the hospital’s Cherry Blossom Festival - one of the events held in celebration of our 150th Anniversary. All associates and the public are invited to the free festival, which will include tea ceremonies, performances of traditional Japanese music, and more.

A commissioned work of art by artist Hiromi Katayama, formerly of Ibaraki, Japan, and now a resident of the Pittsburgh region will be displayed at the festival. Her melding of traditional Japanese painting with modern styling demonstrates the fusion of past and present.

Raffle tickets to win her painting will be available for purchase during the festival. Proceeds will be donated to the Shadyside Hospital Foundation.
The event starts at 11 in the Japanese garden at UPMC Shadyside. I previously posted pictures from May 2015 and March 2014. A 2008 Japan-America Society of Pennsylvania newsletter describes it as "a quiet and unassuming oasis". And a plaque at the entrance reads:
This garden is a gift from Dr. Kazuo Kodera in honor of nurses. It is a place for health care providers to think about our friends around the world and to reflect on the meaning of our work, which is to care for one another. It is a place to find new friendships, to find new hope, and to find peace.

We hope you enjoy your time here.

September 2005

The Pirates (해적: 바다로 간 산적) at Pitt's Spring Korean Film Festival, March 24.

The Pirates (해적: 바다로 간 산적), the second of two movies showing at the University of Pittsburgh's Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures' annual Spring Korean Film Festival, will play on March 24. The distributor provides a summary::
At the onset of Joseon’s founding, envoys bringing the Emperor’s Seal of State to Joseon lose it to a big whale at sea. A bandit JANG Sa-jung goes out to sea to catch the whale with a big reward on its head. But he soon clashes with Yeo-wol, a female captain of the pirates, and unexpected adventure unfolds.
The movie will play in 4130 Posvar Hall (map) from 4:00 to 7:00 pm and is free and open to the public.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

The Propaganda Game, Coffin in the Mountain (心迷宫) at CMU International Film Festival, March 24 and 26.

The CMU International Film Festival recently announced the schedule for its 2016 iteration, with two movies of special interest to this site: 2014's The Propaganda Game and the 2015 Chinese film Coffin in the Mountain (心迷宫).

Friday, March 18, 2016

Dou kyu sei (同級生) movie at Hollywood Theater, May 8.

The Hollywood Theater in Dormont will show the 2016 Japanese animated movie Dou kyu sei (Classmates, 同級生) on Sunday, May 8.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Kenny Endo Contemporary Ensemble Concert at Manchester Craftsmen's Guild, March 24.

The Manchester Craftsmen's Guild will host the Kenny Endo Contemporary Ensemble for a concert on March 24. The Japan-America Society of Pennsylvania [JASP] explains:
Kenny Endo is a world famous taiko drum artist who has the honor of being the first non-Japanese national to receive the title of Natori (stage name and master’s degree) of Hogaku hayashi – traditional drumming. He has performed for Michael Jackson, Princess Di, opened for The Who, and was recorded in motion-capture suit for James Cameron’s “Avatar.”
The concert starts at 7:00 pm at 1815 Metropolitan St. (map) on the North Side. Tickets are available online and cost $30 for general admission, $25 for students and seniors, and $20 for JASP members.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Papa (洛杉矶捣蛋计划‬) in Pittsburgh, from March 18.

The 2016 Chinese movie Papa (洛杉矶捣蛋计划‬) will receive a limited North American premiere on March 18 and will play at the AMC Loews Waterfront. A summary, from the distributor:
A bumbling Chinese talent manager flies to LA in pursuit of his escaped singer, but winds up with five adopted kids and an important lesson in life.

Chinese film Mountains May Depart (山河故人) at Harris Theater, from March 18.

The 2015 Chinese film Mountains May Depart (山河故人) will play at the Harris Theater from March 18 through March 24. A February 11 New York Times review provides a summary:
Three times in “Mountains May Depart,” the latest from the transformative Chinese director Jia Zhangke, people stand near a river that weaves through the landscape like a snake. In the first instance, three friends light fireworks that send out modest sparks. In the second, only two return to the river, where they ignite a bundle of dynamite. By the third trip, only one of the original three remains, everyone’s life having changed as profoundly as China, a cataclysm that’s expressed by a series of rapid explosions in the river, suggesting a drowning world.

Few filmmakers working today look as deeply at the changing world as Mr. Jia does, or make the human stakes as vivid. The three sending out those sparks are Tao (Zhao Tao), and her two close male friends, Zhang Jinsheng (Zhang Yi) and Liangzi (Liang Jin Dong). An affable, easygoing drifter with an expansive smile, Tao works in a small store in the city of Fenyang (Mr. Jia’s birthplace). Mr. Jia likes a slow reveal and it isn’t initially obvious that Tao is the movie’s emotional organizing principle whose feelings run, surge and erupt. The story tracks Tao and her relations with both Liangzi, who works at a coal mine, and Jinsheng, a budding entrepreneur.
The movie premiered in Pittsburgh last fall as one of two Asian movies in the 2015 3 Rivers Film Fest. Showtimes are now available at the theater's website. The Harris Theater is located at 809 Liberty Ave. in the downtown Pittsburgh Cultural District (map).

Monday, March 14, 2016

Pittsburgh Japanese Film Festival at Row House Cinema, March 18 - 24.

The Row House Cinema will present its first Pittsburgh Japanese Film Festival from March 18 through 24. The four films scheduled are 1949's Late Spring (晩春); the 1991 Studio Ghibli film Only Yesterday (おもひでぽろぽろ) making its US premiere; the 1985 Kurosawa film Ran (乱); and the 2015 "demented rap musical" Tokyo Tribe (トウキョウ トライブ トゥー). Showtimes and ticket information are available on the theater's website.

"Turning Crisis into a Blessing: The Evolution of Japanese Culture through Disaster" colloquium at Pitt, March 18.

The University of Pittsburgh's Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures will present a colloquium by MA candidate Timothy Hogge, "Turning Crisis into a Blessing: The Evolution of Japanese Culture through Disaster", on March 18. The abstract:
The purpose of this paper is to examine three major turning points in Japanese history and the evolution of Japanese culture as a result of disaster. The 1923 Kanto Earthquake, the post-World War II era, and the 3.11 triple disasters will be examined to show not only how Japanese culture has evolved over time in responses to these disasters, but also how some aspects of the culture have remained the same. Government responses, general population responses, film, art, and even literature will all be examined as a means to determine exactly how Japan's culture has evolved over time and how these three disasters represent how Japan experiences what I define as a "culture of disaster". Historical links between these disasters will also be examined such as radiation and food affecting the commerce of Japan. This inter-disciplinary approach to this examination is beneficial in that it examines multiple aspects of the disaster culture instead of focusing on one sole aspect and ignoring the rest of the culture that is occurring congruently with the disasters in question.
The talk will start at 12:00 in 4130 Posvar Hall (map) and is free and open to the public.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

"Strange Beauty: Radiography from Fukushima" at University Art Gallery, March 15 - 18.

The University of Pittsburgh's University Art Gallery will host photographer Takashi Morizumi and his exhibit "Strange Beauty: Radiography from Fukushima" from Tuesday, March 15 through Friday, March 18.