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Kotohajime at the Aratani on Sunday

Every January, Little Tokyo becomes the center for celebrating the Japanese New Year in Southern California, with the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center heading up the festivities with programs that invigorate the spirit and imagination. Literally meaning “the beginning of things,” Kotohajime will celebrate the Year of the Rooster with the theme titled Hatsu-Geshiki or “First Scenery.”

Curated by Artistic Director Hirokazu Kosaka, the original Kotohajime performance is a visual delight and artistic achievement, with dazzling performances and live music, accompanied by an award-winning set design.

This year’s program will feature Indian dance troupe Arapana Dance Company (Ramya Harishankar), Japanese classical dancer Nakamura Gankyo, the Colburn School’s Trudl Zipper Dance Institute, Leclat Quintet from UCLA, and a video installation by Carole Kim.

The ritual shooting of the arrow – a purification ceremony – will be performed by Ikkyu of the Los Angeles Kyudo Archery Group.

Admission is $20 general, $18 for JACCC members. For tickets, visit

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