Yesterday I visited the Japanese and South Sudan Pavilions for Foklorama. In preparing to write the up I looked for connections. In the end the only connection that really sprang to mind is that they are both on the Number 17 bus route. So, I’m writing separate posts for each pavilion.
Located in St. Joseph’s Parish Hall, the Japanese Pavilion is divided into cultural space in the basement, with the food and the show in the main floor hall.
I arrived early, which gave me plenty of time to go downstairs and check out the cultural displays. There are a variety of traditions represented in the cultural display. You can find out more about Judo, Lantern Making and Origami among other things.
The pavilion also has a book table. I don’t think I’ve seen this at any other pavilion. The books range from the odd, but interesting Gas we Pass, to the poetry of Pavilion Ambassador Sally Ito. There are a couple of copies of her collection Alert to Glory available, pick one up if you can.
Japanese Pavilion Dining.
Eating is what brings me to the Folklorama pavilions this year. The Japanese pavilion is a great place for eating. I enjoyed the number of options on the menu at the Japanese pavilion. I started with some Chicken Teriyaki. Then I added some Miso Soup and moved on the Sunomono Salad. These are only some of the many wonderful foods on offering at the pavilion. There is also a sushi making demonstration going on which you can watch while you are in the line up to get your food.
One item I couldn’t miss was the SPAM musubi. This comes from the Japanese community in Hawaii. I found it surprisingly good. The SPAM has a little sweetness, and is moist without being mushy.
I like a little dessert to top off the evening, and I tried the Manju. This is a little cake filled with sweet bean curd. For a beverage I chose the hot sake.
Japanese Pavilion Show
The Japanese pavilion does a great job in all three areas of the Folklorama experience. Along with a terrific culture display and wonderful food, the show is highly entertaining. It starts off with Judo demonstrations. The demonstration team do a great job of making a difficult sport look easy and fluid. You can see a bit of that in the video below.
This is followed by two numbers by the Aurora dancers. The second of them is in the video that follows.
These are followed by a contemporary high energy dance number, set to popular Japanese music. Finally, Winnipeg drumming group Hinodi Taiko rounds out the show. As you can see in the video at the start of the post, they not only bring precise rhythm to their show, they also serve it up with a generous portion of humour. There are only three more days left in the first week of Folklorama. Make sure to put the Japanese Pavilion on your Folklorama destination list.