VNCS :: ビクトリア日系文化協会

The Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society – Celebrating Japanese-Canadian Culture

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9th Annual Heritage Dancefest

9th Annual Heritage Dancefest
Saturday, June 20th 2015 – FREE EVENT!

Cameron Bandshell, Beacon Hill Park
Continuous performances from NOON – 5PM
Pack a lunch, a picnic blanket, and a hat & sweater and come for the day.

Heritage DanceFest is a FREE event for the whole family to remember!

Come celebrate Victoria’s ethnic energy as over a dozen local DANCE GROUPS take to the stage with vibrant costumes, traditional music, and exquisite choreography! With such diverse groups participating as Chinese, Norwegian, Balkan, Japanese, Ukrainian, Irish and more – it is a feast for the senses and a celebration of the multicultural communities within Victoria!


Faces of Japanese Diversity: Demystifying Japan’s Homogeneity Seminar and Panel

Wednesday, April 29, 2015
7:00-9:00 PM
Tea and refreshments served.
LEGACY ART GALLERY 630 Yates St. corner of Broad.

Second seminar in Professor Brannen’s ‘Japan and the Other: Societal Change  from 1945 – Present’ series.

Presented in cooperation with the Landscapes of Injustice Project at the Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives.

This event features a panel of researchers exploring various aspects of Japanese society that destabilize the national myth of homogeneity, including various Japanese societal demographics, cultural practices and policy issues. We hope that the panel presentations will be effective in highlighting the diversity that is often concealed by discourses of sameness, in order to reveal the complex and changing relationship with and approach to “Others” within Japanese society.


Panel Facilitator: Jordan Stanger-Ross, Landscapes of Injustice

Organizer, Mary Yoko Brannen, CAPI Jarislowsky East Asia Japan Chair, Gustavson School of Business, UVic.  Professor Brannen will open the discussion with an overview of various minority groups in Japan, and the complex and changing relationship with and approach to “Others” within Japanese society.

Joel Legassie
Joel Legassie is a PhD candidate in the department of history. His research explores the colonization of Hokkaido, Japan in the late 19th and early twentieth century, with a focus on the exchange of information among Japanese, indigenous peoples and Western (primarily English and American) foreigners. He is also the Migration Program Assistant at CAPI. He has recently returned from a Japan Foundation Scholarship in Date City, Hokkaido, where he conducted research on Ainu communities local to the Iburi region of Hokkaido.

“From time immemorial the Ainu peoples have lived in the lands known to them as Ainu Moshir, to the North of the early Japanese state. The Ainu spoke their own language, and maintained a vibrant and complex culture supported by hunting, fishing, agriculture and especially vigorous and independent trade with neighbouring peoples. However, by the turn of the twentieth century, Ainu Moshir had been appropriated by the modern Japanese nation-state, while legal and social discrimination in a burgeoning Japanese settler society systematically excluded Ainu from both traditional and modern ways of life. Joel’s talk will explore how Ainu individuals and communities have resisted and managed this colonial onslaught to protect their distinct culture and identity within the powerful discourse of Japanese nationalism.”

Simon Nantais
Simon Nantais completed his doctoral studies at the University of Victoria in 2011. He has taught Japanese and East Asian history across the Lower Mainland and is presently at Simon Fraser University. His manuscript, under contract with UBC Press, is entitled Mistaken Identity: Race, Nationality, Ideology, and the Formation of the Korean Community in Japan
“My research examines Koreans in postwar Japan through the lens of nationality. Once treated as Japanese nationals in imperial Japan, after the end of the Asia-Pacific War, not only did Koreans lose their Japanese nationality but they struggled – and continue to do so – to find a home, and therefore a national identity, between the country of their birthplace (Japan) and a Korean ancestral home ruled by two ideological opposed states that few have ever visited or speak its language.”

Masako Iino
Past President and Professor Emeritus of Tsuda College, Tokyo
As a professor she taught at Tsuda College for many years, having taught at McGill University and Acadia University and having been a visiting professor at University of California, Berkeley, and Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania.  She was President of the Japanese Association for Canadian Studies (1996-2000) and was awarded with the Governor General’s International Award for Canadian Studies in 2001.  She has published many books and papers in the fields of American Studies and Canadian Studies, as well as immigration studies, including A History of Japanese Canadians: Swayed by Canada-Japan Relations (Tokyo:  University of Tokyo Press, 1997) (Awarded with the Prime Minister’s Award for Publication), Thirty-Seven Chapters to Experience Canada (Tokyo: Akashi Shoten, 2012) (co-editor and author), Another History of US-Japan Relations: Japanese Americans Swayed by the Cooperation and the Disputes between the Two Nations (Tokyo: Yuhikaku, 2000), and Ethnic America  (Tokyo: Yuhikaku, 2011) (Revised version of Ethnic America, 1984 and 1997) (co-author).

“Japanese Canadians ‘repatriated’ to Japan during WWII”
“During World War II Japanese Canadians were removed from the West Coast of British Columbia, where more than 90 percent of them lived, to the interior of the province. Later they were given two options: either apply for voluntary “repatriation” to Japan or go ”east of the Rockies.”  Little research has been done on the more than 4000 Japanese Canadians who decided to sign up for “repatriation” to Japan, a country many of them had never even seen, instead of remaining in Canada.  My presentation tries to explore what they experienced upon going to Japan, a country devastated by the war.”

Marvin Sterling
Marvin D. Sterling is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Indiana University, Bloomington.  He is author of “Babylon East:  Performing Dancehall, Roots Reggae and Rastafari in Japan” (Duke University Press, 2010), in which he explores the popularity of a range of Jamaican cultural forms in the country. In a more recent line of research, he has shifted geographical perspectives from Japan to explore the Japanese community in Jamaica, one that has emerged primarily around an interest in learning Jamaican culture at its source. In another, new line of research, he traces the historical development of and ethnographically situates the discourse of human rights in Jamaican society today.
“In this presentation I explore Japanese reggae artists’ performances of their identities as ethnic minorities in Japan, in interviews, in the lyrics of their songs and music videos, as well as on stage. Focusing on Ainu, Okinawan, Koreans, Chinese, and burakumin artists, I argue that this discussion might be productively framed in the context of a Japanese society in which non-Yamato Japaneseness in entertainment and the arts hides, in Dick Hebdige’s (1989) metaphor, in the light, in which minority Japanese reggae artists situationally assert but also obscure their ethnic identities in the face of state and social surveillances both explicit and implied.”

For more information visit www.uvic.ca/capi

Natasha Fox, Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives
Direct: 250-721-7661 | Centre: 250-721-7020

Continuity & Connection – Friday February 27th

Continuity & Connection「繋ぐ〜多次元を〜」

A concert of traditional and innovative Japanese Noh performance and jazz piano featuring master Noh actor YAMAI Tsunao and pianist KIHARA Kentarô,
with an ensemble of professional Noh actors and musicians.

A concert of artistic continuity and cultural connection.
Continuity & Connection – Japanese Noh performance and jazz piano
Friday February 27, 2015 – 7:00 pm (door opens at 6:30pm)

At Gérald-Henriette Moreau Theatre (École Victor-Brodeur, 637 Head Street Victoria)

TICKETS: $24 /$18 (students & seniors) /$12 (12 and under) At the door on Feb 27: $28/$22/$15 (cash only if at the door)

TICKET AGENCY: Ticket Rocket-Victoria’s Community Box Office:  250-590-6291
MORE INFORMATION: http://ticketrocket.org



Special thanks to Conseil Scolaire Francophone de la Colombie-Britannique #93 & École Victor-Brodeur for providing the performance venue for this concert, and all the community supports, including Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society and Victoria Japanese Friendship Society.
Hitomi Harama 250.881.5568


Flute Performance – Takahiro Fujita

Flute Performance
Takahiro Fujita

Art Gallery of Greater Victoria
Tuesday, September 23, 2014 (All day)

Takahiro Fujita is a well known Noh flute musician from a long line of distinguished players. Trained by his father and grandfather, Fujita is part of the 12th generation of musicians. Takahiro’s grandfather Daigoro Fujita was one of the most famous flute players in Japan, and the family are former members of the Kaga-Maeda Feudal Clan from Kanazawa, who performed as celebrated “reigning shogun” court-musicians during the Edo period.

Noh theater is an exceptional form of classical Japanese musical drama that has been performed since the 13th century. Utilizing song and dance to illustrate the legends, events and literature of Japan, Noh is one of the oldest theatrical forms in the world.

Cost: Included with admission or membership.



Click for a larger version.

Association of Nikkei and Japanese Abroad – 55th Annual Conference

nikkei-japanese-abroadKaigai Nikkeijin Kyoukai (The Association of Nikkei and Japanese Abroad)
55th Annual Conference

October 22nd-24th, 2014

Any Nikkei or Japanese living outside of Japan can attend. The entrance fee is ¥10,000.

It’s worth while because of all that you receive. Buffet dinner at Foreign Affairs is exceptional and the lunch put on by the Speaker of the House is also good.

There is usually a tour of the Diet and sightseeing of Tokyo included. You get to meet other Nikkei from around the world to network.

If anyone is interested in attending or if anyone will be in Tokyo Oct. 22 – 24th, they can apply on line.

The information is here:  http://www.jadesas.or.jp/en/taikai/the-55th-convention-of-nikkei-and-japanese-abroad.html