Celebrating 5 Years of Japanese Culture and Innovation with Miyavi and JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles

Words + Media by Dana Nguyen

September 1, 2023

On August 27th, JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles celebrated its 5th Anniversary in the heart of Hollywood. Surrounded by a variety of food and beverage booths, attendees enjoyed music performances that seamlessly blended Japanese and American cultures. They also indulged in popular Japanese street and festival foods and savored Japanese beer and sake.

JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles, the dynamic cultural center dedicated to showcasing the best of contemporary Japanese art, design, technology, and cuisine, is celebrating a significant milestone - its 5th anniversary. Since its grand opening in 2018, JAPAN HOUSE LA has served as a bridge between Japan and the United States, providing a platform for cultural exchange and fostering a deeper appreciation for the rich traditions and innovations of Japan.

To celebrate its 5th anniversary, JAPAN HOUSE welcomed the acclaimed Japanese musician and performer, Miyavi, to the stage. Nicknamed “Samurai Guitarist,” Miyavi is known for his virtuosic guitar skills and finger-slapping style of playing. That night, he mesmerized event attendees and fans with an electrifying performance accompanied by traditional Japanese instruments.

Miyavi started by playing his guitar as if he was playing the tsugara shamisen, a traditional three-stringed instrument with an almost haunting melody. As he paused, the audience cheered in anticipation, and the singers, drummer, taiko drummers, pianist, and tsugara shamisen player joined in. He then performed crowd favorite, 'What’s My Name'. His performance was enriched by the powerful rhythms of taiko drums, creating a dynamic and heart-pounding atmosphere that echoed through the venue. 

During 'Tears on Fire', Miyavi exemplified his captivating stage presence as he made sure to look to all angles of the audience. 

Miyavi performing 'Tears on Fire', Dana Nguyen/ab(CDE)

As Miyavi congratulated JAPAN House for their 5th Anniversary and thanked it for bringing everyone together that evening, he went on to say “music, movies, cultures, bring us together. We’re all different, Japanese, American, we’re all here together. We’re all different, but we can be one.” 

Miyavi performs 'The Others' delivering a beautiful sentiment as he sings the lyrics, "We are the others. The dreamers and the lovers. We are every color. We are the others."

Miyavi performing 'The Others', Dana Nguyen/ab(CDE)

After performing several more songs, Miyavi ended his set with ‘Day 1’, making his way over to his fellow artists on stage to showcase tsugara shamisen player and taiko drummers, and engaging the audience to jump with him to end the celebratory night. 

JAPAN HOUSE Los Angeles has made an incredible mark on the cultural landscape of Los Angeles and the United States. It's a testament to the enduring appeal of Japanese culture, from traditional arts to cutting-edge technology and culinary delights. What better way to celebrate the Foundation, than with Miyavi as he performed some of his most iconic songs—each infused with his unique blend of rock, pop, and traditional Japanese influences? As it celebrated its 5th anniversary, JAPAN HOUSE LA continues to be a cultural oasis and a symbol of the enduring relationship between Japan and the United States. We’re grateful for their continuous efforts to foster awareness and appreciate for Japan in the heart of Los Angeles.

'Bridging Cultures | Inspiring Futures' 5th Anniversary Event held by JAPAN HOUSE LA in Ovation Hollywood, Dana Nguyen/ab(CDE)


Photos and videos taken by Dana Nguyen (@momentswdana)

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