The Japan Foundation, Los Angeles Newsletter
New Director's Greeting

November has arrived, and eventually autumn weather will spread in LA. I hope you have all been doing well!

In Japan, you can hear various phrases using "Autumn" all over the streets during this time of year.

For example, "Autumn for Reading"(読書の秋), "Autumn for Sports"(スポーツの秋), and "Autumn for Arts"(芸術の秋). Autumn, when it's cool and refreshing after the sweltering summer, is the perfect season to get your head and body fully active.

In addition, many ingredients such as rice, saury pike and matsutake mushrooms are in season, so the phrases "Autumn of Harvesting"(実りの秋) and "Autumn of Appetite"(食欲の秋)are often heard as well.

If you are learning Japanese, why don’t you remember these phrases and tell the Japanese people, who enjoy and appreciate the seasonal atmosphere, and they will surely be pleased.

Please let me also talk about the historical transition of one autumn-related saying. 

In the Kyogen play during the Muromachi period (AD1336-1573), there was a line saying, "The man's heart and the autumn sky change seven times overnight." (男心と秋の空は一夜にして七度変わる)At that time, it was used to mean that a man's affection is changeable like the changeable autumn sky.

However, in the Meiji era (AD1868-1912), the British proverb "A women's mind and winter wind change often" was introduced to Japan, and during the Taisho democracy period (AD1912-1926), urbanization, changes in values, and improvement of women's status overlapped, and gradually "Women's heart and autumn sky" (女心と秋の空)also became popular.

Of course, people's hearts are easy to change regardless of gender, but I think this is an interesting example of how Japanese proverbs have transformed after interacting with the West.

Lastly, the spread of COVID-19 has again peaked here and there are days when we can't go out with peace of mind. But, I hope you will enjoy the "Long Autumn Nights"(秋の夜長) through watching JFLA's online programs!
Yasuko Uchida
November 2 - 23
12:30PM PT
Our virtual concert series Music Mondays continues in November with many more amazing musicians! Bringing some cheer to your lives through music, we will be preforming LIVE via Facebook every Monday at 12:30pm.

The them this month is "Gratitude" and we will feature the following Artists:

November 2 - Hideaki Tokunaga: Born in Osaka Japan, guitarist, Hideaki Tokunaga came to the United States in 1985 and settled in New York, playing with an organization called Music Under New York (MUNY), which arranged for musicians to play in subways.
In 1990, he moved to Southern California and started attending CalArts through the Charlie Mingus Scholarship Program. In 1998, he graduated from CalArts with a Master's Degree. His debut CD, "The Wind Told Me" was released in 1997 and the second album, "Midnight Rainbow" was released in 1998.
Currently residing in Los Angeles, his warm, beautiful, solid and grooving guitar sound has been capturing the hearts of every Jazz fan.

November 9 - Minyo Station: Minyo Station is “The Contemporary style of Japanese Folk Music group”, based in Los Angeles, California. They arrange Japanese folk songs with a western twist.(jazzy, funky, and ROCK!) Classically trained Minyo singers and shamisen(3-string Japanese guitar) players are the core instruments to carry the traditional Japanese sound, and western instruments such as guitar, keyboards, bass and drums bring out the modern side of taste. Their mission is to carry on the sound of Japanese traditional music to the next generation and to create their own modern sound of traditional Japanese music.

November 16 - Miki Aoki: Praised for “genuinely memorable performance” by BBC Music Magazine, pianist Miki Aoki is widely recognized for her diverse abilities as pianist and collaborative artist. She is recording exclusively for German Label Hänssler Profil. Her latest recording, Tokyo Story, was released in 2018. This sensational recording featured the original piano version of the film soundtracks of Japanese film director, Yasujiro Ozu and was given recognition by the Japanese media. Currently based in New York City, she is a Doctorate Candidate at SUNY Stony Brook and is a teaching assistant under Gilbert Kalish. Since September 2019, she has been working at the Juilliard School as the studio pianist for Professor Carol Rodland.

November 23 - Layla Lane: Somewhere in the bustling alleys of the pop music metropolis lies L.A.- based pop duo Layla Lane. With a live show that can charm even the most resilient crowd, members Heday and Valerie have mastered their instruments to deliver a one-of-a-kind brand of dueling piano-guitar revelry.
After guitarist Heday left his native Japan, he honed his skills in LA collaborating with Jerry Lee Lewis and the Beatles' Ringo Starr. In 2009, he joined forces with Los Angeles-born pianist Valerie Stern, who has performed with members of the L.A. Philharmonic and even doubled for actress Lindsay Lohan playing Chopin in the film I Know Who Killed Me. Together, Layla Lane has written music for two Coca-Cola commercials, recorded a song for the Lionsgate film Killers, toured Japan, and hosted their own variety TV show, Layla Lane's Pop Spot. The duo's debut album and single "Happy Lane" were released by major label avex in Japan.

To participate, please visit JFLA's Facebook page (

Wednesday, November 4 & 18
12:30PM PT (15 Minute Session)
Bilingual Yoga will be offered via JFLA Facebook LIVE!

No need to change clothes or use a yoga mat; you will be seated in a chair at home and receive an instruction from our instructor in bilingual (English and Japanese). Easy and relaxed!

There will be one session starting at 12:30pm. Just go to JFLA's Facebook page ( Refresh and recharge yourself with us at home!

Wednesday, November 25
12:30PM PT (15 Min Session)
We would like to help during these trying times. Meditation with Japanese Singing Bowl will be offered via JFLA Facebook LIVE!

The singing bowl used for this program harmoniously combines the healing qualities of the Tibetan singing bowl and its Japanese traditional singing bowl. Relax and feel your stress dissipate into thin air as the sounds of the singing bowl lead you into a meditative state.

There will be one session starting at 12:30pm. Just go to JFLA's Facebook page ( Stretch and refresh yourself with us at home!

The Japan Foundation Program Guidelines for Fiscal Year 2021
The Japan Foundation offers programs in Japanese language as well Arts & Culture. Please read below for information for each category.
APRIL 1, 2021 TO MARCH 31, 2022
Click here to contact us with any questions or to inform us of your intention to apply to one of these programs.
The Japan Foundation organizes programs to introduce various aspects of Japanese arts and culture all over the world. In addition, it promotes networking and human resources development in arts and cultural fields by interactive collaboration/co-production, and through dispatching and invitation of specialists.
Click below to download the online application forms and guidelines.
This program is designed to provide financial support for museums and art institutions overseas that organize exhibitions introducing Japanese art and culture to audiences overseas. In addition, this program is designed to support overseas international exhibitions such as biennials/triennials introducing Japanese artists and their works.
This program is designed to provide partial financial support for overseas publishers intending to translate and/or publish books originally written in Japanese. The program aims to foster better understanding of Japan by encouraging overseas publishers to translate and publish Japanese books. The grant covers part of the translation cost and/or publishing costs (e.g. costs for paper, typesetting, printing and binding). Applicants may apply for one of the following categories: “translation only” “publication only” or “translation and publication.”
This program aims to support the development of professionals specializing in the study of Japanese visual arts by providing an opportunity for curators and researchers from abroad to conduct research in Japan, and by so doing, promote the study of the field and the introduction of Japanese art overseas. This fellowship is implemented by the Japan Foundation with generous funding from the Ishibashi Foundation.
 Application deadline is 5:00 p.m. EST, November 2, 2020.
JFLA Support in Response to COVID-19
Advocacy Support Letter 
If your Japanese language program is in danger of being cut due to COVID-19, we will send a support letter to stakeholders (Superintendent, Principal, Dean, etc.).

Please contact for details.

We are also accepting applications for the following grant programs.
Grants for Nationwide/Statewide/Regional-level Events and Projects
(NOT for individual single institutional project)
Non-profit online/virtual events are eligible!
Deadline:  Two months prior to the project start date
Japanese Language Education Update 83
How is everyone handling the changing weather? Lately, Los Angeles has started to cool down and I have to find ways to warm myself up during this time. But compared to East Coast and some other areas, we are much warmer and we’ve experienced a longer set of summer this time around. For this month, we actually have some exciting Japanese language education events! Like last year, we will be collaborating with American Association of Teachers of Japanese (AATJ) with the Leadership Training! But this year, it will be virtual and working with multiple Japanese language teachers all over the United States. So it’ll be a great opportunity to oversee the conditions of Japanese language education, especially during this Coronavirus pandemic. Many teachers are going through difficult times and if you ever need support, please don’t hesitate to contact us at . We will do our best to support you through this difficult time in terms of resources and support letters. Also, this year, American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) will be hosting their conference virtually! So this year, we will be having our virtual booth and doing our best to support language teachers in the best way we can. We do miss seeing everyone “face-to-face” so let’s hope for the next Convention, we can see each other! Until then, please stay safe and healthy during these months!