41st Annual Powell Street Festival
Saturday, August 5 & Sunday, August 6, 2017
11:30am to 7:00pm
Oppenheimer Park (400 block of Powell Street)
Firehall Arts Centre (280 E. Cordova Street)
Vancouver Japanese Language School and Japanese Hall (475 Alexander Street)
Vancouver Buddhist Temple (220 Jackson Avenue)
The Powell Street Festival is the largest Japanese Canadian festival in the country and the longest running community arts celebration in Vancouver.
Highlights from this year’s extravaganza include performances from the dynamic duo George & Noriko – a Japanese blues cowboy and Tsugaru shamisen player from Melbourne, Australia who will play an additional performance with local musicians Bernie Arai and Brian Minato; a screening of episodes from Almost Asian – a web series created and starring Katie Malia, who will be in attendance from LA; a presentation on Japan’s third gender curated by Asato Ikeda; a special presentation by iconic Japanese author Haruki Murakami’s key translators Jay Rubin and Ted Goossen; Ensemble Liberta who will bring their classical Japanese instruments all the way from Japan, live calligraphy by Kisyuu; a new interactive installation entitled “Macro Maki,” the winner of the 2nd Design Competition, allows festival attendees to don pillow-sized sushi costumes and shoot selfies on a stage that’s designed like a massive sushi tray; a mix of Taiko groups including California’s JODAIKO; film screenings at the Firehall Arts Centre, co-presented with the Hapa-palooza Festival, will include the award-winning short film Born With It; the return of Sally Ito, who will read from her new book Are You an Echo? and performances by Joy Kogawa and Soramaru Takayama; a production of NeOn-ね音 – Mayumi Yoshida’s play about love inspired by her late grandmother’s arranged marriage, and a performance by Ottawa-based artist Matt Miwa.
The craft market will be selling a wide variety of original handmade goods not available in stores. Food vendors will be serving authentic and delicious Japanese food along Dunlevy and Jackson Avenues. Guests can enjoy the festival’s interactive installations, cultural and historical displays, and children’s activities.
All events at the Powell Street Festival are free.