In the dog days of summer, it’s best to escape the heat in a place that’s cozy and cool. For those into Japanese cultural events, this month offers a diverse selection of film premieres and live music—all in the comfort of indoor air conditioning.
This month’s highlights include:
Various dates from Aug. 3
Village East Cinema, 181-189 Second Avenue
This month, Village East Cinema presents four more films from the legendary Studio Ghibli and Academy Award-winning director Hayao Miyazaki! Here’s your chance to enjoy some Japan’s greatest and most influential animated films on the big screen. The morning screenings are English dubbed versions, while the evening screenings are in Japanese with English subtitles. This month’s selections include Japan’s all-time box office champ Spirited Away (Aug. 3-4), Howl’s Moving Castle (Aug. 10-11), Tales from Earthsea (Aug. 17-18), and From Up on Poppy Hill (Aug. 31-Sept. 1).
Tuesday, Aug. 9, 2016
Asa Akira, Dirty Thirty
$12.99 Kindle, $13.64 paperback
The world knows her as a porn star…but it’s her way with words that will touch you again and again. As she contemplates turning thirty years old while still being in the adult film trade, Asa Akira delves into her past, present, and future, exploring the events that brought her to where she is now and the surprising and insightful plans she has for her future. Asa’s perceptive, funny, and straightforward writings on love, sex, death, marriage and celebrity come together in this surprising book of essays that will have you laughing hysterically one minute and deep in reverent thought the next. Personally revealing as well as universal, Dirty Thirty marks the coming of age of a new literary star.
Flamboyán Theater at The Clemente, 107 Suffolk Street
OZmate, a musical theater company based in Takarazuka, proudly presents The Legend of Oni with an all-female cast as part of the New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC)! The Legend of Oni is a musical about two Oni, ogres in Japan, in the pre-samurai Heian period. Lose yourself in the beautiful Japanese days of old with wonderful kimono costumes under the direction of Naoko Tsujii. OZmate also appears earlier this month as part of J-Summit New York at the Bowery Electric (327 Bowery) on Sunday, Aug. 7, with additional performances by Truthseekers, LUST, Lulla LayLa, Tamuro Rie, Naoki, Megumi, Shino Frances, Takaro Nishimura, and Emi Matsushita. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.; tickets are $15 advance, $18 at the door (includes one drink).
Saturday, Aug. 13, 7:00 p.m.
Joe’s Pub, 425 Lafayette Street
$20, $15 with student ID
Shunzo Ohno is one of the most versatile and influential trumpeters in modern jazz. The spirited interplay of his band reveals the depth of skill and joy in spontaneity that is characteristic of Ohno’s ensemble performances. One can hear the give and take of jazz dialog underneath the mercurial expanse. Shunzo Ohno’s experiences with Art Blakey, Gil Evans, Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock cast an influence resulting with a force of anticipation and fresh vitality. Each of his compositions confront life’s uncharted circumstances both on global and personal conditions illuminating vigor, dignity, hope and freedom with a mesmerizing renewed spirit.
Crowne Plaza Times Square, 1605 Broadway
The best three-day anime convention in New York City returns for its second year—now in the heart of Manhattan—and features over 100 events and panels, three days of cosplay, game tournaments and anime screenings, concerts, balls and dances. This year’s special guests include Ian Rubin, Tyler Walker, Heather Walker, Brittany Lauda, Dokudel, Schaffer the Darklord, Michael Hecht, Jessi Nowack, Marcus Stimac, J-MUSIC Ensemble, iconiQ, The Asterplace, Matt Shipman, Corinne “Megami33” Sudberg, 2une, Psyche Corporation, PurpleEyesWTF, xJerry64x, and Reni Mimura.
Tuesday, Aug. 24, 9:00 p.m.
The Bowery Ballroom, 6 Delancey Street
$30 GA, $100 VIP (includes meet-and-greet)
Japanese for “the end of the world,” Sekai no Owari released their debut album, Earth in 2011, and has enjoyed a meteoric rise to the top ever since, most recently ascending Japan’s Billboard charts this past January with their third album, Tree, which has since reached platinum status. The band—consisting of Fukase, Nakajin, Saori, and DJ Love—now packs massive venues like the storied Nippon Budokan and Nissan Stadium. Now, Sekai no Owari’s long road to global superstardom begins this summer, with the four friends arriving in New York on the heels of their theme song for the highly anticipated Attack on Titan film, a live-action adaptation of the immensely popular Japanese manga and anime series.
Monday, Aug. 29, 7:00 p.m.
(le) Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker Street
$20-$25 advance, $30 day of show
Critically acclaimed pianist Taka Kigawa has earned outstanding international recognition as a recitalist, soloist, and chamber music artist since winning first prize in the prestigious 1990 Japan Music Foundation Piano Competition in Tokyo, and the Diploma Prize at the 1998 Concurs Internacional Maria Canals De Barcelona in Spain, with such accolades from the New York Times as “Mr. Kigawa’s feat deserves the highest praise, especially since it was combined with such alacrity and sensitivity to the musical material…brilliantly done…a careful and serious-minded musician, quietly poetic and considerate” and from the New Yorker: “Unbelievably challenging program. Kigawa is a young artist of stature.” For this performance, Kigawa will perform Frederic Chopin’s 24 Preludes, Op. 28, and Claude Debussy’s Preludes, Books I and II.