23 Things To Do in Tokyo This Weekend: February 21–24

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Happy birthday, Emperor Naruhito! For the first time Japan celebrates the new emperor’s birthday with a new national holiday. While Emperor Naruhito’s 60th birthday falls on Sunday, February 23, us denizens of the Reiwa Era benefit by enjoying a day off on Monday, February 24.

The question is, will the big brains at the Diet convert Emperor Emeritus Akihito’s birthday (December 23) into a national holiday? The precedent was set as Japan recognizes the birthdate of Emperor Hirohito (April 29) with the Showa Day national holiday. Who do we talk to to make this happen?

Until then, there are plenty of events and attractions happening in Tokyo this weekend to help everyone celebrate the reigning emperor’s birthday in style.

Photo by Takashi Shikama

Kenneth MacMillan’s Manon Ballet

Lauded as the pinnacle of British ballet, Kenneth MacMillan’s “Manon” is known as a piece that challenges every aspect of the strength of a ballet company. New National Theatre, Tokyo hosts performances on February 22 and 23. ///camped.nail.workouts

© y kawahara via Flickr under CC

Yushima Tenjin Plum Festival

Yushima Tenjin has been known as a popular “plum spot” since the Edo times. During the festival period visitors can also enjoy a variety of entertainment. ///cobble.beaters.bottom

Hyakudan Hinamatsuri 2020: Travels with Hina Dolls from Izumo, Inaba & Hagi

This year’s extensive hina doll exhibition at Hotel Gajoen Tokyo, a tangible cultural property, displays hina dolls from the prefectures Tottori, Shimane and Yamaguchi as well as a display of dolls representing the periods of Edo, Meiji, Taisho, Showa, Heisei and Reiwa. ///mere.hands.unwell

Hokusai ― The Teacher-Student Showdown!

Legendary ukiyo-e artist Hokusai is thought to have had as many as 200 disciples. This exhibition at Sumida Hokusai Museum displays around 100 pieces of paired work where we can compare the offerings of Hokusai alongside his apprentices and descendants. ///dent.tickles.nests

Setagaya Plum Festival

Hanegi Park in Setagaya-ku is one of the most famous spots for plum viewing inside the city. Aside from over 600 flowering trees, the festival includes a variety of traditional Japanese events and performances. ///pirate.discount.school

Courtesy of Tokyo Midtown ©Louis-Philippe Rondeau

School of the Future Art Exhibition: Dappi

For Tokyo Midtown’s second School of the Future exhibition they host an exhibition on the concept of “dappi,” presenting a collection of works by artists who have fearlessly stood out to escape social stereotypes and expectations. ///nagging.ranges.blunt

Perfect Liars Club Tokyo – Love Special Edition

The Tokyo edition of the smash hit comedy storytelling-interrogation show delivers a special romance-themed edition of it’s hilarious and wildly entertaining monthly show at Good Heavens Bar in Shimokitazawa///siesta.panther.union

mrhayata via Flickr under CC

Japanese Plum Garden at Koishikawa Korakuen

Admire the seasonal plum blossoms at this Japanese Edo garden near Tokyo Dome. During peak viewing season the park holds a small plum festival that includes traditional music and performances. ///lift.sunroof.learn

Hina Matsuri Girls’ Doll Festival Art Exhibition

Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo launches the annual Hina-Matsuri Girls’ Doll Festival Art Exhibition from February 1, celebrating a Japanese cultural event known as Girls’ Doll Festival, or Hina-Matsuri. ///avocado.villas.happen

4×4 Visual Art Experience

Four underground Tokyo-based artists collaborate to create an environment of unity, thought-provoking creativity and mind-altering visual euphoria. ///careless.homework.become

Flowers by Naked 2020

Enjoy a romantic stroll through an interactive garden of blossoms at this fusion of light, flowers and technology at Nihonbashi Mitsui Hall. ///mice.junior.spoils

Shingo Yoshida: The Summit Art Exhibition

For this solo exhibition at Loko Gallery, Shingo Yoshida attempts to trace and reconstruct a monument based on the Yuhi, a slab of rock with carved haiku located at the top of Mount Fuji. ///glad.simple.bracelet

Dialogue in the Dark

Dialogue in the Dark, making its Japan English-language debut at Mitsui Garden Hotel Jingugaien Tokyo Premier on February 22, is where visitors experience nature and culture in a world of complete darkness. ///tractor.unravel.rejects

Telexplosion: In the Afterglow of TV-Land in the 1980s

This five-day event series at Goethe-Institut Tokyo focuses on the synergistic effect of TV and video arts in the ’80s, including MTV’s immense collaboration of music and video, Sony’s Jumbotron created for the International Exposition on Science and Technology, and Infermental, the world’s first videocassette magazine. ///cobble.nitrogen.predict

Sunshine Aquarium Ikimono Art Exhibition

For an adorable date spot this Valentine’s Day check out Sunshine Aquarium. Located inside Sunshine City in Ikebukuro, Sunshine Aquarium hosts an eye-popping art exhibition with colorfully aesthetic animals.
//under.milky.shorter

Good Sunday Market – Nordic and Eastern European Market

The Good Sunday Market at Yoyogi Village returns for two days of Nordic and European market flavor where shoppers can find vintage tableware, decorations, fabric, and baked goods in addition to traditional craft workshops. ///dunes.probable.wiser

Pierre Bonnard, Family Scene, 1893, lithograph on paper, private collection © Frédéric Aubert

10th Anniversary Exhibition: Dreamed Childhoods – Bonnard, the Nabis and Childhood

Explore 19th century Paris through the works of the Nabis, a group of painters who carried the transition from impressionism to symbolism. This is the first weekend to catch the exhibition at Mitsubishi Ichigokan Museum, so move fast before tickets sell out.
///harmless.smudges.dream

Japan Grand Prix International Orchid and Flower Show

Surround yourself with the delicate fragrance, vivid colors and fascinating textures of plants and flowers from around the world at the Tokyo Dome. This year’s highlights include an installation comprising 1 million orchid flowers. ///drivers.caller.soak

Monster Hunter 15th Anniversary Event

For its 15th anniversary, Monster Hunter hosts a VR experience expo in Yokohama where you’ll be able to encounter and fight monsters like you are in the Monster Hunter game itself. Are you ready for the quest, Hunter? ///credible.trains.copes

Oedo Antique Market at Yoyogi Park

Serious collectors and casual shoppers can all enjoy this large outdoor antique market where they can find everything from old kimonos, toys and ephemera to coins, ceramics, jewelry and furniture. ///tinsel.themes.balanced

Narumi Hiramoto Exhibition: narconearco

For this solo exhibition at Guardian Garden in Ginza, award-winning artist Narumi Hiramoto uses the entire gallery space as a three-dimensional display. ///volume.apple.traders

Kasing Lung Art Exhibition “THIS IS WHAT IT FEELS LIKE”

Kasing Lung, a Belgium-based children’s book illustrator, holds a solo exhibition at Hidari Zingaro inspired by his love of monsters, anime and the universe. ///diner.delved.restore

Akasaka Nominoichi Antique Market

This monthly upmarket flea market at Ark Hills has plenty of treasures to be found. Perfect for a lazy Sunday stroll after brunch and a great place to pick up gifts or indulge in some treats for yourself. ///inviting.require.play

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