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Message from the Executive Director

Greetings and best wishes for a Happy New Year from The Japan Foundation, Toronto,

We are now emerging, slowly but surely, from the short days and long, dark nights of the Canadian winter. Despite the snow flurries and cold winds, later sunsets offer a promise of the coming spring.

We are grateful for each additional minute of sunlight, as we are now in the midst of our busiest season. At the Japan Foundation, Toronto, we are hosting a new exhibition, "Ceramics for Daily Comfort: Designs by Yasuki Sakamoto and Kazuhiro Tominaga." We also have a number of events in January, including "Itadakimasu! A Series Exploring Sustainable Food Systems and Mindful Eating" and "Seeing the Doctor in Japan: An Introduction to the Japanese Healthcare System."

On January 26, we will be joined by Hiroshi Kurushima, a history scholar from Japan, who will take us into the world of the samurai. And our own Toshi Aoyagi will offer a series of talks to elucidate the complex and fascinating world of Kabuki Theatre, in preparation for our screenings of Cinema Kabuki at the Tiff Bell Lightbox on February 9 and 10.

Spotlight Japan, the citywide celebration of Japanese culture, kicks off at TIFF in late January with two must-see retrospectives, "Tokyo Drifters: 100 Years of Nikkatsu" and "Japanese Divas: The Great Actresses of Japanese Cinema's Golden Age."

Please visit the Spotlight Japan website for more programming from Canadian Stage, Soundstreams and the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre.

Finally, if you have thought about learning to speak Japanese for travel or pleasure, why not take a look at some of the free courses offered by the Japan Foundation? We offer classes to help you enjoy our exhibitions and cultural programming, as well as basic travel conversation, JLPT preparation, and more. Visit our language website for the latest course information.

I hope that 2013 proves to be a fulfilling year for you all, and I look forward to seeing you at The Japan Foundation, Toronto and around Canada.

Takashi Ishida
Executive Director
The Japan Foundation, Toronto

131 Bloor Street West, Suite 213
Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5S 1R1
Phone: (416) 966-1600
Fax: (416) 966-9773

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