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Sunday, Dec. 11, 2005

KANSAI: Who & What

Kobe light show is now aglow:
The 11th Kobe Luminarie is being held every evening through Dec. 22 in Chuo Ward. This sculptural art of illuminations, originating from the Renaissance Period, was launched to commemorate the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake and attracts millions of people each year.

The festival will be held at Higashi Yuenchi Park and the Kyu Gaikokujin Kyoryuchi area, which can be accessed from Motomachi Station on the JR and Hanshin lines. The illuminations will be switched on from around 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. from Monday to Thursday, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Fridays and the final day, from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. on Saturdays, and from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Sundays.

Entrance is free.

For more information, call the organizer at (06) 4860-8600 (Hello Dial) or (078) 391-6371, or visit the event's Web site at www.kobe-luminarie.jp/

Discussion meeting for foreign women
The Osaka Gender Equality Foundation is inviting English-speaking non-Japanese women to a discussion meeting from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday at Osaka Prefectural Women's Center, or Dawn Center, in Chuo Ward, Osaka.

The discussion group will meet every month and focus on common problems faced by foreign women, including those pertaining to cultural differences, employment, and child care, and participants will exchange information and experiences.

This month, the group will discuss "Coping with holiday shock and homesickness."

Participation is free. No reservation is required.

To get to the Dawn Center, walk 350 meters east from Tenmabashi Station on the Tanimachi subway line.

For more information, call the organizer at (06) 6910-8588.

Kyoto theater troupe with Western touch
Noho, a Kyoto-based theatrical group, is giving a performance titled "Hide & Seek" at 7 p.m. on Dec. 19 at Oe Nogakudo noh theater in Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto.

The group, formed in 1981 by director Jonah Salz and others with a goal to fuse the themes, techniques and spirit of Japanese noh and kyogen (comical short drama) with Western theatrical traditions.

The troupe has performed plays by William Shakespeare, William Yeats, Samuel Beckett and Woody Allen in the Kansai region and Tokyo, as well as at several overseas festivals.

The program features three plays. They are "Rockabye" by Beckett, "Japannequins," a kyogen recently written by Sadao Osada, and "Agave," a Greek tragedy by Euripides. The cast includes professional kyogen performers.

The lines will be spoken in Japanese by Japanese cast members, while non-Japanese actors will speak English only, but it is arranged so the story is understandable to everyone in the audience with the aid of the actors' physical movements and other elements of the performance.

Tickets are 2,000 yen in advance and 2,500 yen at the door.

For more information and advance tickets, call Miho Project at (075) 212-4456 or e-mail yu-an1@mbox.kyoto-inet.or.jp (in Japanese or English).

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