Kansai Scene Magazine


Odorini Ikuze - Special in Osaka

Mar 1-2

Theater Plats Esaka, Osaka

The four dance groups in this show are from Kyoto, Tokyo and Taiwan and are masters of contemporary dance. One of the themes is Dance to Dive. You can enjoy many short performances. You might think contemporary dance performances are sometimes difficult to understand but they are quite accessible - for example, some of them are comical and make you laugh. Some dances include improvisation, which makes them lively and vivid. You may find yourself with a new appreciation for dance after this.

Time: 1st, 3pm & 7pm • 2nd, 3pm
Getting there: Subway Midosuji line, Esaka stn, exit 4
Admission: Adult ¥3,500, Student ¥2,500 (¥3,000 Student ¥2,000 in advance)/ Pair ticket ¥5,000 (10 pairs in order of arrival in every play)
Tel; 06-6990-7290

Biwako Biraki

Mar 9

Biwako, Shiga

This annual event is the opening ceremony for the coming sightseeing season. Seven big sightseeing ships bring about 1,400 invited guests while about 40 ships and a few fire ships parade on Lake Biwa. Finally a 1.7 meter, 6kg golden key is dropped into the lake meaning the door to the sightseeing season is open. Every year the heroine of an NHK drama becomes the one-day captain to enter- tain guests. This event takes place to to encourage a successful tourist season and encourage clean and inviting conditions a the lake for the whole season.

Time: 10am
Getting there: JR Biwako line, Ohtsu stn, Keihan Hamaohtsu stn
Admission: free
Tel; 077-522-4115

Dinosaur Laboratory

Mar 15- Jun 29

Osaka Museum of Natural History, Osaka

You can see whole body skeleton models in this exhibition. During the special exhibition, you can also see rare specimens. What's more, you can touch real dinosaur bones. There is a special booth in which you can experience the same environment as the dinosaurs – for example, you can walk on the ground as you were a dinosaur. This is a truly breathtaking exhibition.

Time: 9:30m–5pm
Getting there: Midosuji line, Nagai stn
Admission: Adult ¥1,100/Uni, High school student ¥600/Under Jr high school student free (¥1,000/¥500 in advance)
Tel; 06-6697-6221

Deer Rice Cracker Flying Competition

Mar 18

Wakakusa yama, Nara

Have you ever eaten the rice crackers (shika senbei) tourists feed to the deer in Nara Park? Maybe yes. Have you ever flown one? Only 1,000 people in order of arrival can take part in this special competition. You fly, or throw in frisbee style, original big deer rice crackers in a competition to see which can go the furthest. The best record in history is 57.4m in the individual competition. The winner gets a deer horn trophy. After flying the cracker, you can not pick it up and eat it. Please let it be, because the deer are looking forward to yet more freebies!

Time: 9am
Getting there: Kintetsu Nara line, Nara stn Nara Bus Kasugataisha mae
Admission: ¥300
Tel; 0742-22-3626

Kansai Event Listings March

Japanese Koto Performance

Open-Air Museum of Old Japanese Farm Houses, Osaka
Mar 1–2

There are 11 houses, which were built in the Edo period (17th–19th centuries) and used until the 1950s. Articles of everyday uses are also on display. There will be perfor-mances of koto music in the courtyard.

Time: 1:30pm–3pm
Getting there: Hankyu Takarazuka line, Sone stn, 30mins walk
Admission: Adult ¥500/High school student ¥300/Jr. high, elementary school student ¥200
Tel; 06-6862-3137

Nomura Mansai Kyogen

Biwako Hall, Shiga
Mar 7, 8

One of the most famous Kyogen performers Mr. Nomura Mansai is coming to Shiga. Kyogen is a kind of humorous noh. If you think Noh is difficult, why not try Kyogen instead.

Time: 7th, 7pm; 8th, 2pm
Getting there: 20 minute-walk from JR Biwako line, Otsu stn/Keihan line, Ishiba stn
Admission: S¥6,000/A¥5,000
Tel; 077-523-7136

The 15th Osaka Outdoor Festival 2008

Intex Osaka, Osaka
Mar 8–9

This is the largest outdoor leisure event in Japan exhibiting a wide range of products from camping cars to canoes, marine sports gear, motorcycles, bicycles, 4WD and SUVs. Come along and prepare for the coming summer vacation.

Time: 10am–5pm
Getting there: New tram Nanko Porttown line, Nakafuto stn
Admission: Those over high school age ¥1,200 (¥1,000 in
advance)/Junior high school and primary school students
¥600 (¥500)/Handicapped free (ID verification)
Tel; 06-6947-1912

Hina Doll Exhibition Jinai Machi Tondabayashi

Tondabayashi city Jinai cho, Osaka
March 8–9

There are about 600 heritage Japanese houses in Jinai-cho. Hina dolls, figures displayed for the girls' day celebration are on display in more than 100 houses here.

Time: 10am–4pm
Getting there: Kintetsu Nagano line, Tondabayashi stn
Admission: varies from house to house
Tel; 0721-23-5564

Healing Exhibition 2008 in Osaka

Intex Osaka, Osaka
Mar 8–9

This big event introduces products and services in the areas of beauty salon treatments, body healing, relaxation, spiritual counseling and organic cosmetics. Well-known guests will participate in a talk show. Various experience corners to be set up for women who are willing to be made beautiful.

Time: 10am–5pm
Getting there: New tram Nanko Porttown line, Nakafuto stn
Admission: ¥1,000 (for 2 days)/The pre-registered free
Tel; 06-6947-1912

2008 March Grand Sumo Tournament

Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, Osaka
Mar 9–23

This is the one annual professional sumo tournament in Osaka and a your best chance to see Japan's iconic sport live.

Time: 10:10am–6pm (the first day starts 8:40am–6pm)
Getting there: JR/Subway/Nankai/Kintestu, Namba stn
Admission: ¥3,000–¥45,200
Tel; 06-6631-0120

Intern'l Gourmet Club - First event of 2008

Cuidaore Restaurant, Dotonbori, Osaka
Mar 9

Cuiadore is one of Namba's most well known and revered restaurants, with its drumming doll attracting hordes of tourists. At this IGC event, there will be a kaiseki style lunch (assortment of various small dishes) topped off with 'grill your own takoyaki'. In addition, Cuidaore's staff will talk about the history of the restaurant (and drumming doll) and guide you through the 'Takoyaki Dance'. Don't know the takoyaki dance? Neither do we - but it will be fun (and funny) to learn. The lunch will be in a private tatami room on the 8th floor.

Time: 1pm
Getting there: Take exit 14 at Namba station; go north and take a right at the second corner onto Dotonbori street; go straight (past the bridge) and it's on your right, soon after the book store.
Admission: ¥2,500/person - with lunch and 1 free drink (Limited to 30 people; please contact Yuki for reservation)
Tel: 050-3078-4392 • Email: [email protected]

The 24th Osaka Motorcycle Show 2008

Intex Osaka, Osaka
Mar 14–16

This is an exhibition of domestic and imported motorcycles and related products. Planned events include children's motorcycling school and trial demonstrations. Not only fathers but also the kids can enjoy a large variety of booths and attractions.

Time: 10am–5pm
Getting there: New tram Nanko Porttown line, Nakafuto stn
Admission: Adult ¥1,500 (¥1,200 in advance)/High school students ¥1,100(¥700)/Pair ticket ¥2,500(¥2,100)/Those under junior high school age free; handicapped and a helper free (with ID verification)
Tel; 06-6357-8130

Higashiyama Lantern 2008

Shorein, Chionin, Yasaka Jinjya, Koudaiji, Kiyomizudera, Kyoto
Mar 14–23

This pathway through Higashiyama is decorated with blos- soms and lights for the distance between Kiyomizudera to Shorein and provides a real atmosphere of old Japan.

Time: 6pm–9pm
Getting there: Please use public transportation
Admission: free
Tel; 075-212-8173

Tea Ceremony

Open-Air Museum of Old Japanese Farm Houses, Osaka
Mar 23

This was the first open air museum in Japan and started in 1956. You can enjoy the Japanese tea ceremony called ocha-kai in the courtyard in the early spring breeze. Tradi- tional Japanese farm houses from all around Japan are on display here.

Time: 11am–3pm
Getting there: Hankyu Takarazuka line, Sone stn, 30mins walk
Admission: Adult ¥500/High school student ¥300/Jr. high,
elementary school student ¥200 (tea ceremony ¥500)
Tel; 06-6862-3137

Antique Grand Fair in Kyoto

Pulse Plaza, Kyoto
Mar 30–Apr 1

About 1.5 million antiques, selected by 330 antique dealers from all over Japan, are on sale. Clothes made by old cloth and accessories are popular items.

Time: 10am–5pm
Getting there: Kyoto city Subway Karasuma line/Kintetsu Railway, Takeda stn, Shuttle bus, Pulse Plaza
Admission: free
Tel; 077-522-2307

EVENT section compiled by Kanako Tsuji

:: Online Articles


What are we doing far away from home?
The expatriate experience


Come together
A meeting of minds across cultures


My life as an expatriate
Kansai's diverse expats in their own words

:: health

The spring of our discontent
It's hay fever time again!


Royalty in crab
Eat, bathe, and be merry ...

:: profile

The tango man
Maximiliano Paradiso

:: Kansai Listings


Up to date cinema listings guide so you always know what's on, where and when!

:: ART

Best exhibitions & listings


Best events & listings


Best gigs & listings


All the hot picks

:: Also in this month's mag

:: Food

Tentokemai, Shinsaibashi


Dragonfly, Amerikamura


Best festivals & listings


New releases & recommendations


Best films & cinema listings


'Tis the season to be poorly

:: travel

Scooting around
Hanoi, Vietnam


The digital Swiss Army Knife
Getting the most out of your DS

:: Food

Gourmet Girl
Pizza at Pomodoro Rosso