“Allegiance” film to show on December 13, 2016

George Takei’s musical film “Allegiance” to show in Tucson (and elsewhere nationwide) on December 13.



“Their loyalty was questioned, their freedom taken away, but their spirit could never be broken. Rejoice in one family’s triumphant story of hope, love, and forgiveness in the new Broadway musical: Allegiance.

Inspired by true events, Allegiance is the story of the Kimura family, whose lives are upended when they and 120,000 other Japanese-Americans are forced to leave their homes following the events of Pearl Harbor. Sam Kimura seeks to prove his patriotism by fighting for his country in the war, but his sister, Kei, fiercely protests the government’s treatment of her people. An uplifting testament to the power of the human spirit, Allegiance follows the Kimuras as they fight between duty and defiance, custom and change, family bonds and forbidden loves. Legendary performer George Takei — (Star Trek, “Heroes”), who was himself an internee as a child, stars alongside Tony® winner Lea Salonga – (Miss Saigon, Mulan) in this enthralling and epic new musical.
But as long-lost memories are unlocked, Sam finds that it is never too late to forgive and to recognize the redemptive power of love.”

 Playing in Tucson at Oro Valley Marketplace, Foothills 15, El Con 20, Century Park Place 20.  See movie theaters for details on December 13.
Theater locations:

Fourth Annual Autumn Ikebana Exhibition at Yume Japanese Gardens

ikebana-picture-iiiFourth Annual Autumn Ikebana Exhibition – Nov. 20, 21, 22, 23, 25, 26, 27, 2016

Yume Japanese Gardens, 2130 N. Alvernon Way, Tucson, open daily 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

“Dozens of traditional Japanese flower arrangements (Ikebana) will be on display throughout the Gardens to delight you in our Fourth Annual Autumn Ikebana Exhibiiton. This year’s exhibition is special, because we are extending it from three days to an an entire week, November 20-27 (with the exception of Thanksgiving Day, November 24, when the Gardens will be closed.)

The exhibition is dedicated to our late Board Member and friend Drinda Green, who was Ikebana enthusiast herself. Flower arrangements will be made by the Tucson-area members of five different schools of classical and contemporary Ikebana, all using distinctive and beautiful vases acquired by Drinda over years of collecting.

Regular Gardens admission rates apply.”


Two Japanese films to show at Loft Theater as part of 2016 Loft Film Fest

Two Japanese films are part of 2016 Loft Film Fest at the Loft Cinema, Nov. 9 to 13:
“After the Storm” will be shown on Nov. 10,  at 2 p.m. and “Creepy” on Nov. 11 at 9:45 p.m.  More info on these two films is on our Calendar.
Info on all films for the Loft Film Fest is at: https://loftfilmfest.org/films/.  Southern AZ Japanese Cultural Coalition is a Community Partner for both films and will have an info table at each screening, about an hour before.  Loft Cinema is located at 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. in Tucson.


3 exhibits on Japanese American WWII Internment Camps at Tucson Desert Art Museum

“Gambatte!” photo show at Tucson Desert Art Museum, Nov. 4, 2016 to April 30, 2017, commemorating 75th anniversary of E.O.9066 on Feb. 19, 2017


Mae Yanagi, May 8, 1942; Hayward, CA
Photographer: Dorothea Lange

“GAMBATTE! Legacy of an Enduring Spirit” Photographs by Paul Kitagaki, Jr.

November 4, 2016 – April 30, 2017

“GAMBATTE! Legacy of an Enduring Spirit” is the first body of work devoted to capturing the past and the present of Executive Order 9066 through photographs and oral histories. Executive Order 9066 was issued by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on February 19, 1942, which led to the imprisonment of nearly 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II. Through the juxtaposition of historic images and contemporary portraits of the same individuals if their descendants, Kitagaki takes us on a visual exploration of the Japanese concept of Gambatte, or triumph over adversity.

Companion exhibits at same time/place:  “Behind Barbed Wire: Japanese American Incarceration in Arizona”, and

“Art of Circumstance: Art & Artifacts Created by Japanese Americans incarcerated during WWII” .

Lectures and other events to coincide with this exhibition to be announced (see Calendar listing for January 22 and Feb. 18, 2017).

Tucson Desert Art Museum, www.tucsondart.org, 7000 E. Tanque Verde Rd. Tucson Arizona, 520-202-3888.  Hours are Wed. to Sun, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Opening reception for this exhibit on Nov 4th, 5 to 7:30 p.m. See website for details. Free for members, all others $7.00.


Adults $10.00
Seniors $8.00
Students/Educators $6.00
Youth (7-14) $4.00

Japanese Americans in Hawaii panel discussion on Nov. 3rd


6:15 – 8:00 PM
Himmel Park Library, 1035 N. Treat Ave. Tucson
sponsored by SAJCC

Retired East Asian Professor Dr. Min Yanagihashi has written a paper on this topic and will be moderating a panel discussion.  Free and open to the public.

  “Questions for the panel: 1) In your family, how were traditional culture and values and behavioral norms handled?  (2) In regards to Japanese heritage, looking outside the family, comment on some events, activities, institutions, or organizations that impacted your life in Hawaii.”

Tentative schedule:
6:15 – 6:45  (30 min.)  comments on his paper on this topic (click on blue hyperlink) written by ret. Professor Dr. Min Yanagihashi (Nisei from Oahu)
6:45 – 7:45  (60 min.)  panel discussion.  After the two questions, panelists can comment on Min’s paper, ask questions of each other, etc.

Panelists will all be Japanese Americans born/raised in Hawaii: Min’s wife Evelyn Kodama Yanagihashi, M.Ed (Nisei han from Oahu), Carolyn Sugiyama Classen, JD (Sansei from Big Island), Dr. Naomi Okumura Story (Sansei from Maui), James Tokishi, B.S.(Yonsei from Oahu).  Evelyn is a retired school teacher, Naomi is an educator, and James is a transporation modeler for Pima Assn. of Governments. And I’m a former practicing attorney.

(Issei were the original immigrants from Japan, Nisei are their children, Sansei are the Nisei’s children, Yonsei are the Sansei’s children, Gosei are the Yonsei’s children, and so on.)

Poster designed by Crystal Akazawa.



“Kyoto Considered” photo exhibit opens at Yume Japanese Gardens on October 21

  • fushimi“On Friday, October 21, from 5:00 to 7:00 PM, Yume Japanese Gardens will host a free reception in our art gallery to open a special photo exhibit on Kyoto by Yume Gardens founder and Executive Director Patricia Deridder. She has visited this most traditional of Japanese cities for decades, and her images capture the iconic inhabitants, buildings, and gardens of Japan’s former imperial capital with love and insight. Framed photos will be on sale throughout the exhibition, with all tax-free purchases going to the operating fund of the non-profit Gardens.

    The exhibition will run until December 31 and entrance will be free with regular Gardens admission.  www. yumegardens.org. Yume Gardens is located at 1230 N. Alvernon Way, south of the Tucson Botanical Gardens, east side.

Japanese culture at Tucson Meet Yourself in October


The annual folk festival Tucson Meet Yourself will be on Oct. 7, 8, 9 this year, as usual at El Presidio Park and just east at Jacome Plaza (in front of the Joel D. Valdez main library, 101 N. Stone Ave.) in downtown Tucson.   Hours of operation:

Friday, October 7, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Saturday, October 8, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

and Sunday, October 9, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Featured Japanese cultural activities:

Takoyaki (octopus balls) food booth at Jacome Library Plaza, J2A. Plus ramen!

Tomomi Katz cooking takoyaki at her food booth

Tomomi Katz (left) cooking takoyaki at her food booth (photo credit Brandy Gannon)

Saturday October 8:

2 p.m.Odaiko Sonora taiko drumming at Church Ave. stage.  Followed by Obon dancing at 3 p.m, same stage, performed by dancers from Southern AZ Japanese Cultural Coalition and friends.  (Church Ave. stage is just west of Joel D. Valdez main library, on Church Avenue, east of old Pima County Courthouse).   www.tucsontaiko.org

4 p.m. Suzuyuki Kai traditional Japanese dancers at City Hall stage, with Mari Kaneta. (City Hall stage is just north of the Tucson City Hall in El Presidio Park, 225 W. Alameda St.).

Sunday October 9:

11 a.m.  AZ Kyudo Kai and UA Kyudo Club will demonstrate Japanese archery on City Hall stage

12:30 p.m. Akiko Victorson interview on Japanese calligraphy, Jacome Plaza lawn (just south of the Joel D. Valdez main library in the Folks Arts area)

1:30 p.m. Chi Nakano interview on origami, Japanese paper folding, Jacome Plaza lawn

All info at www.tucsonmeetyourself.org.

Yume Japanese Gardens re-opens for the Fall on October 1, 2016 with Kakejiku (hanging scrolls) exhibit

“Tucson’s first and only authentic Japanese gardens reopen for their fourth consecutive Fall/Winter season Saturday, October 1 with a unique exhibition of vintage and contemporary Japanese hanging scrolls.


Besides the continuing exhibition of scrolls, the Fall/Winter activities at the non-profit Yume Japanese Gardens of Tucson will feature a showing later in the season of intimate photography of Japanese gardens, street scenes, and other images of Kyoto, the nation’s capital from 794 to 1868 and one of the country’s most traditional venues. Entrance to exhibitions and gallery shows is free with admissions to the Gardens.

The opening scroll exhibition highlights kakejiku, hanging scrolls that point up the beauty, fine workmanship, uniqueness, and collectability of this classic genre of Japanese art. The 18th-, 19th– and 20th-century scrolls on show are decorated with delicately hand-painted images of birds and other animals, trees and plants, landscape views, mythological creatures such as dragons, and Japanese calligraphy in ink-wash script.

Yume Japanese Gardens showcases five traditional Japanese garden designs on three quarters of an acre and has been drawing a growing stream of visitors from the Tucson community, from across the nation, and from Mexico since its opening in January 2013. Revealing pathways and layered plantings offer courtyard views of classical Japanese imagery. A Zen contemplative garden, a stone and gravel garden representing sea and islands, and a tranquil strolling pond garden with koi provide further examples of Japanese garden styles.

Additions to the Gardens over the years include buildings hand-constructed to Japanese designs and erected using Japanese building techniques, a museum, and an extensive gift shop with handicrafts, kimonos, vases, gardening and landscaping design books, and childrens’ toys and other items imported directly from Japan. Activities at the Gardens include therapeutic guided garden walks to assist the emotionally distressed, photography and Japanese art exhibits, flower shows, tea ceremonies, Japanese language and calligraphy lessons, musical and theatrical performances, and seasonal traditional Japanese cultural festivals for visitors of all ages.

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The Gardens are a non-profit organization open from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm daily October 1 to May 3, weather permitting. They are located at 2130 N. Alvernon Way, one block south of the Tucson Botanical Gardens. Admission discounts are available for senior, military, student, and child visitors. For more information, call Allen Boraiko at 520.343.2920 or emailyume.gardens@gmail.com. Or visit www.yumegardens.org.”

Recreational Taiko for 6 weeks at Odaiko Sonora


All Ages Recreational Taiko (AART) at Odaiko Sonora – August 13 to September 24, but no class on September 10, 2016.

“Wear comfortable clothes you can move freely in and bring a water bottle. We take care of the rest! Try the first class free. If you like it, sign up for the 6-week session. Graduates of this session have the option of debuting their new taiko skills at our Tucson Meet Yourself performance in October! Saturdays, 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. for 6 weeks by Odaiko Sonora drummers.”  All classes at Rhythm Industry Performance Factory, 1013 S. Tyndall Ave.  inTucson.