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Sunday, June 11, 2006

KANSAI: Who & What

World music celebrated all around Kansai area
Fete de la Musique, a world music event, will be celebrated June 17, 18 and 21 in Osaka, Kobe, Otsu, Shiga Prefecture, and other cities in the Kansai region.

The festival of music has its origin in France, and the major celebration is now held around the world every year on June 21, the summer solstice, with numerous free music performances.

The Japanese version began in 2002 in Osaka, and this year will feature free concerts held in 21 venues in seven cities. About 200 musicians will perform all kinds of music ranging from classical to jazz, chanson, gospel and "jiuta" traditional Japanese songs.

The venues include the Hilton Osaka (all three days) and Osaka City Hall (June 17), both in Kita Ward; Tower Records Shinsaibashi (June 18) in Chuo Ward; Suntory Museum, in Osaka's Minato Ward (June 18) and NHK Kobe broadcasting center in Kobe's Chuo Ward (June 21).

All concerts are free.

For more information, call the executive committee at (06) 6456-1630 or visit the official Web site (in Japanese) at mediatv.ne.jp/ongakunosaijitsu/

Photographers staging show on 'slow' in Kyoto
The Kansai International Photographers Association, or KIPA, is holding an exhibition through July 9 at Prinz Gallery in Sakyo Ward, Kyoto.

KIPA is an international group of photographers based in the Kansai region with the goal of exploring themes relevant to today's world through photographic images. They regularly hold exhibitions in Kyoto, and this time the theme is "slow," as a response to the growing interest among people in developed countries in such concepts as slow life and slow food. Images on the pace of daily life, taken by 16 members, will be shown.

The venue will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. To get there, walk two minutes from Chayama Station on the Eizan Line.

For more information, call the venue at (075) 712-3900, visit its Web site at www.prinz.jp or send e-mail to the group at kipajapan@gmail.com

Hydrangeas featured at Mimuroto Temple in Uji
A large hydrangea garden is open to the public through July 9 at Mimuroto Temple in Uji, Kyoto Prefecture.

About 10,000 hydrangeas of 30 varieties, including some that are quite rare, are blooming among the cedar trees, offering a picturesque view.

The garden will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Also, on weekends till June 25, the flower garden will be lighted after dark from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Admission to the temple is 500 yen for adults and 300 yen for children.

The temple is a 15-minute walk east from Mimuroto Station on the Keihan Line, or an eight-minute bus ride from Uji Station on the Keihan and JR lines.

For more information, call the temple at (0774) 21-2067.

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