17 Things To Do in Tokyo This Weekend: August 28-30

Tokyo Weekender's guide to events, activities and things to do in the city this weekend

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With August coming to a close lets celebrate the coming of September with a few online and offline events. Be it an Online Live house, party in a love hotel or an exhibition of fine art there is something for everyone this weekend. Let’s all remember to keep social distance guidelines in mind as Tokyo is still very much at risk of going back into lockdown for a second time. Stay safe and have a good week ahead.

Josiah Hawley

1. TW Live House: Episode I

Tokyo Weekender introduces our favorite Tokyo-based musicians and performing artists during an online concert on TW Facebook Live. The likes of Japanese post-rock darlings The;Cutlery, pop trio Three1989, synth-wave duo Kuro Deko, R&B/soul singer-songwriter Josiah Hawley, record-breaking freestyle rapper Rhyming Gaijin and more deliver exclusive pre-recorded performances to be shared with TW fans.

Image courtesy of Tokyo LoveHotels

2. Tokyo LoveHotels Vol. 16 #EVERYLITTLETING

With a large gathering of local and international talents, Tokyo LoveHotels always creates a night filled with art, music, experiences and love. By providing a free space for artists to sell or exhibit their works, Tokyo LoveHotels always support the art world in Tokyo, and you can too by attending Tokyo LoveHotels Vol 16.

With live performances from Ray Yamanaka, Henna Tattoo with moshimochan, exhibitions and various live Djs this is an event not to be missed.

3. National Council of YMCAs of Japan Presents: Tsugio Tokunaga and Fumiaki Miura

The National Council of YMCAs of Japan will be broadcasting a charity concert from the Italian Ambassador’s Residence starring renowned Japanese violinists Tsugio Tokunaga and Fumiaki Miura. This charity event was organized by the Italian Ambassador to Japan and his wife, as well as the Italian Embassy in Japan, in response to the National Council of YMCAs of Japan’s desire to show gratitude towards medical professionals who are dedicating their lives to the treatment of the growing number of Covid-19 cases in the country.

©Nippon Domannaka Festival Official Facebook Page

4. Nippon Domannaka Festival Online

The largest team dance festival in Nagoya takes things online making this year’s festival available all over the world. The annual Nippon Domannaka Festival usually sees around 2 millions visitors flock to Hisaya Odori Park in Nagoya to watch dance teams from across the country compete.

5. World Wine Festival in Roppongi Hills

With more than 120 different types of wine from all over the world, the World Wine Festival at Roppongi Hills is once again looking to be an unmissable event. Starting from 11am the wine will be free-flowing until 9pm making this an event for the early risers and night owls alike.

6.  The Lineage of Modern Japanese Art

Following the Meiji restoration, the introduction of Western art had incredible influence over Japanese painting and, in turn, forced Japanese artists to redefine themselves and rebuild a stronger identity. In times of great uncertainty, the paintbrush paved the way for innovation, and, today, these traces remain unfazed. Offering approximately 40 works from the Meiji to the Showa period (1868-1989), this exhibition is an opportunity to see the works of key painters who marked their names in the history of modern Japanese art, all in one place.

After much consideration for the health of movie lovers and guests to the festival, Nihon Media decided that the 2020 Japan Filmfest Hamburg cannot take place this year as a traditional film festival but instead will evolve into an online festival. Partnering with Videociety, over a two-week period 50 different films will be streamed from Japan to fans around the world. Online tickets for the event will cost 5 euros per block and can be purchased here.  A large portion of ticket sales will go directly to Japanese filmmakers, most of whom have suffered greatly because of Covid-19.

8. Gransta Tokyo & Aomori Nebuta Festival

August 3 marked the opening of Gransta Tokyo, the ekinaka shopping complex of Tokyo Station. The new ekinaka plaza includes an installation honoring the Aomori Nebuta Matsuri, a massive fire festival with equally massive lantern floats featuring kabuki actors, mythical figures and gods. This year, the festival was canceled amid coronavirus concerns, so to recognize its cultural import, one such lantern – called a nebuta – will be on display at Gransta Tokyo.

9. World Coffee Rally at Streamer Coffee Tokyo

Coffee lovers’ favorite franchise, Streamer Coffee Tokyo, is launching an imaginary wake-up-and-smell-the-coffee world journey for those whose travel plans went down the drain this year. From now through October 23, each week, Streamer Coffee will be offering a different kind of unique coffee flavor from all over the world at its Tokyo stores. Staying true to its identity and spirit, Streamer has selected the most unique and most “kick” coffee from all around the world and will introduce them in “extreme styles” — so youʼll surely come across a cup youʼve never heard or seen before. The campaign also has a stamp rally element — those who manage to collect all the world traveler stamps might receive a special prize.

Happoen Happo en Farmers Support Beer Event Garden Terrace Food Tokyo Weekender

10. Thrush Cafe at Happo-en: Farmers Support Beer Event

Thrush Cafe will host Happo-en’s annual beer terrace, called “FARMERS SUPPORT BEER EVENT” this summer. Not only have restaurants struggled in the Covid age, but also their suppliers. In support of farmers, the beer terrace will offer two dishes revolving around ingredients grown by producers from all over the country.

11. Tea Room in the Sky At MuSuBu

Through a combination of offline and online activities, the newly opened MuSuBu facility at Happo-en, in cooperation with Shizuoka City and Shizuoka City Tea Industry Promotional Council, will introduce the magic of Shizuoka City’s tea. This two-day experience will allow guests to taste tea made by tea-brewing professionals as well as pairings in order to level up your own home tea-brewing experience.

12. Oishii Ukiyo-e: The Roots of Japanese Cuisine

Discover the history of Japanese cuisine and culture through classic Edo Era artworks. Ukiyo-e woodcut prints are known to capture the small and everyday details of Japanese history in their unique and beautiful style. This exhibition focuses on artworks relating to traditional cuisine and cooking as well as presenting recipes and photographs of recreated dishes.

Sumida Hokusai Museum’s latest exhibition introduces Edo life by exploring the annual events of the historic period. The Great Edo Almanac focuses on traditional events and seasonal customs from the Edo period, using artworks by the great master Hokusai to give an intimate sense of life and culture at the time.

The Bauhaus was established as a school of design by the architect Walter Gropius in 1919 in the historic German city of Weimar and celebrated its 100th-anniversary last year. Despite only being active for 14 years before its enforced closure due to Nazi repression in 1933, it was full of experimental spirit and revolutionized education in the world of art and design, where its enormous impact can still be felt to this day.

A large-scale exhibition of incredible masterpieces from the collection of the National Gallery in London. The National Gallery is known for its stunning collection of European paintings, which will now be shown outside of the museum for the first time in its 200 year history. Art lovers in Tokyo (and later Osaka) have a rare chance to get up close with many world-renowned pieces from the Renaissance to the post-Impressionist period.

The long-running summer music festival sees over 40 Avex artists take things online for a lineup of special performances. This years a-nation will be the first time the event is held online, instead of its usual multi-day takeover of large stadiums, your favorite performers will be delivered right into your homes. Artists including Ayumi Hamasaki, Da Pump, Super Junior, Amuyi, Exo-SC, Koda Kumi, Sky-Hi, TRF, Jame Lu, Red Velvet, Peter Fish, I Don’t Like Mondays, Da-Ice, Piko Taro, SuperM and many more will be safely delighting the remote audience with a spectacular show!

The space museum TeNQ in Tokyo Dome City’s Yellow Building is collaborating with the much-loved Sanrio duo Little Twin Stars. The new exhibition, called “Kiki & Lala’s Star Tour,” looks back at the 45-year-old history of Little Twin Stars, including original concept drawings and popular merchandise, alongside various space topics. Other exhibition highlights include a corner where you can learn about the life of stars, appeasing space enthusiasts.

For more event recommendations, see our recently revamped event listing page. Got an event to share? Let us know at editor@tokyoweekender.com

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