BENGALURU: Indians singing Japanese songs, Japanese singing Kannada songs – this is just a glimpse of what you can expect at the upcoming Japan Habba over the weekend. Art, music and dance will take centre stage along with a hint of educational activities at the 16th edition of the habba. If the teaser to the two-day cultural extravaganza held over the weekend was anything to go by – attended by over 100 people – this year’s habba is only expected to be a bigger affair. While the footfall was about 6,000 last this, this time they are expecting over 7,000 participants.
According to Srividhya A, chairperson, Japan Habba Organising Committee (JHOC), the highlight of the 2020 edition, is a performance by Shukou Tsuchiya, a prominent Suibokuga/sumi-e (traditional Japanese ink painting) artist. Tsuchiya has developed the traditional sumi-e into a contemporary art form with the goal of restoring the lost glory of sumi-e paintings. “He has actively worked towards popularising the art form by branching into newer avenues of portraying them. He often collaborates with famous fashion designers and automobile designers. His signature style is to use strokes of blank ink, both dark and light shades and sometimes layer on a dash of colour to add a finishing touch. Tsuchiya will be giving a live rendition of Suiboku ga on a specially made canvas of 4M width,” says Srividhya who took over as chairperson in 2015.
Other attractions include a festival plaza featuring a Japanese ‘Yagura’ (festival tower), which will include pop cultural stores and booths. In addition, two major universities – Tokyo University and Kyoto University – will be present to showcase the courses they offer to students. And firms will also be present to recruit candidates for jobs.
The habba is a result of over six months of hardwork starting July when the team first met to decide on the 2020 edition. With over 20 members, majority of whom are Indians, they put together an event that helps Japanese language learners about the culture of the Far East. “In fact, the name Japan habba itself suggests that it’s an inter-cultural extravaganza for Japanese and Indians. It started off as a platform to give those learning Japanese an idea of their culture,” says Srividhya, adding there will be many more Indian food options this year for those who prefer so.
Japan Habba 2020 will be held on Feb 8 and 9. Tickets are priced at `100 and available at the venue, The Indian Institute of Science (IISc).