Models will wear kimonos representing countries participating in the Olympics and Paralympics.
The “Imagine Oneworld Kimono Project” is proud to share its message, “The world can unite as one,” by handcrafting nearly 200 unique kimonos in celebration of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic games.
Each kimono’s design will represent the image of the countries participating in the games, as the project envisions it. As part of the mission of the project, a delegation of 21 models, musicians and support staff will visit Southern California from Japan for a series of kimono fashion shows with music performances, including the renowned taiko group Nobushi.
Seven exquisite kimonos will be featured, representing Bhutan, Brazil, Lithuania, Qatar, South Africa, Tuvalu and the U.S. The performances will mark the USA kimono’s world debut.
The public is invited to enjoy the kimono fashion shows and musical performances on the following dates:
• Tuesday, June 30, at the Japan America Society of Southern California’s 106th Anniversary Dinner & Gala Celebration. The event will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, 1600 Disneyland Dr., Anaheim. For more information and reservations, call (310) 965-9050, ext. 104, or visit www.jas-socal.org.
• Saturday, July 4, at the 111th Huntington Beach 4th of July Parade. The USA kimono will be worn by a Japanese model riding on a firetruck along with eight high school student ambassadors participating in the Huntington Beach Sister City Association’s annual student exchange program with Anjo, Aichi Prefecture. The parade starts at 10 a.m. at Pacific Coast Highway and 9th Street, turns left onto Main Street, then ends just after Yorktown Avenue in Huntington Beach. At the conclusion of the parade, the taiko group Nobushi, accompanied on shakuhachi and piano, will perform in front of Huntington Beach High School, located near the corner of Main Street and Yorktown Avenue.
For more information about the parade, including a parade route map, visit http://hb4thofjuly.org/Parade.html.
• Sunday, July 5, at South Coast Plaza, 3333 Bristol St., Costa Mesa. Two kimono fashion shows with music will take place at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. in the Carousel Court (Level 1). For more information, visit www.southcoastplaza.com.
Each show will combine traditional Japanese kimonos and music performed with Japanese musical instruments. The kimonos, which embody the splendor of each country’s history and culture, were created by prominent kimono craftsmen using traditional dyeing and weaving techniques. The music is performed with taiko, shakuhachi and piano, all of which blend together to create a truly unique and entertaining show. The song “America,” composed specifically for these shows, will be performed along with other Japanese-influenced music to express the message of “Imagine Oneworld.”
“Kimonos are one of the world’s instantly recognizable traditional garments,” said Douglas Erber, president of the Japan America Society of Southern California. “This is truly a rare opportunity to enjoy uniquely designed kimono from Japan, combined with the amazing music performances by the Nobushi taiko drum group and other distinguished musicians from Japan.”
“The Imagine Oneworld Kimono Project’s performances in Southern California were realized thanks to the great support from Mr. Erber and the Japan America Society,” said Yoshimasa Takakura, founder of the project. “We send our profound gratitude for making this tour’s performances possible.”
Imagine Oneworld Inc. was founded in 2014 as a nonprofit organization by Takakura, president of Choya Japanese Kimono & Obi Co. Ltd., under a mission to revitalize the Kimono industry in Japan. The goal is to create 196 kimono to showcase at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic games.
This kimono performance for the USA is subsidized by J-LOP+, with funding from the Ministry of Economics, Trade and Industry of Japan.
For more information: http://piow.jp, https://www.facebook.com/imagineoneworldkimonoproject/
The Nobushi taiko drummers.