/

Philippine Festival kicks off in Tokyo

by Magdalena Osumi

Staff Writer

In the Philippines, every city and community regularly celebrate local fiestas, and on Aug. 30 and 31, Tokyo, the home of one of Japan’s largest Filipino communities, will host its own local festival at Ueno Park. Until last year, this annual festival was known as the Barrio Fiesta and was held in Yokohama’s Yamashita Park, but in its new location it’s being rebranded simply as the Philippine Festival.

During the two-day event, visitors can experience and learn about the country’s rich and diverse culture for free. There will be troupes performing a selection of traditional Philippine performances, including the popular Tinikling, a dance based on bird movements and one of Southeast Asia’s oldest styles. Some of these dances will be performed by the nonprofit Tokyo-based Inrayog-Philippines Folkdance Troupe and some by The Philippine Cultural Dance Troupe of the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, which comprises university students and graduates of the Philippine Studies Program.

This year, the festival will also offer visitors the chance to listen to Philippine music performed by Filipino Japan-based musicians, while Filipino personalities and celebrities have also been invited to entertain. Other programs include introductions to the country’s popular games and a fashion show featuring both traditional and contemporary Philippine clothing.

As is the norm with such festivals, plenty of the country’s dishes will be available at booths, as will be original Philippine products.

The Philippine Festival takes place in Tokyo’s Ueno Park from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 30 and 31. Admission is free. For more information, visit philippinefestival.jp.