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Foyle Obon Japanese Festival

The Playtrail, 15 Racecourse Road, Derry, BT48 7RE


On the evening of Saturday May 28th, the city’s very own Obon Festival of Japanese music, arts and culture returns to the grounds of the Playtrail.

In Japan, Obon is one of the most important annual festivals, combining family, food, dance and taiko drumming culminating in a three day feast of colour, rhythm and light. Foyle Obon was born of a desire to share Japanese culture and tradition while creating a meaningful family festival for all and recognising the ever growing number of Japanese and shared heritage families in the North West.

The gates will open at 5.30pm and ticket holders are invited into our own Little Tokyo. In the grounds there will be calligraphy and origami workshops, Taiko drumming workshops, traditional Japanese storytelling, fun Japanese games, Kakigori ice cream tasting as well as light refreshments. Watch out for our friendly Godzilla who might pop out from behind a tree!

The amphitheatre stage will feature performances from local Taiko players, including many of our community workshop participants who have been waiting for this moment to show everyone their talent. The festival is the highlight of our year round cultural outreach programme where participants of all ages and abilities have been learning and taking part Taiko workshops and Japanese dance classes. They come together onstage at the festival to showcase their skills and celebrate their achievements. There will also be performances of traditional Japanese dances as well as Bon Odori dance, an opportunity for the whole audience to join in (no experience or technique necessary!). Throughout the site there will be The festival ends, as the evening light fades, with a beautiful lantern ceremony, truly a special finale.

Gates open at 5.30pm. Please note that pre booking is essential as tickets will not be available at the door. Entrance is £5 (under 5s free).

This image contains details of the Foyle Obon Japanese Festival taking place on Saturday 28th May from 5.30pm at The Playtrail.

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