The Yanai Initiative

UCLA + Waseda University
reimagining the Japanese humanities
for the world

The Art of the Benshi 2024

World Tour , presented by the Yanai Initiative for Globalizing Japanese Humanities and the UCLA Film & Television Archive, will run April 5 – 26, 2024. The tour will bring to life the mesmerizing artistry of benshi performance, encompassing 12 dates at six venues in five cities: New York, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles and Tokyo.

A poster by Kamijō Takahisa from The Poster Project (2017)

In 2017, the Yanai Initiative worked with eleven major Japanese designers to reimagine a legendary series of posters created in 1982

One of two kyogen masterclasses with Nomura Mansai and Ishida Yukio held at UCLA in 2017

Designated holders of Important Intangible Cultural Property Nomura Mansai and Ishida Yukio each held one free masterclass for participants from UCLA and the broader Los Angeles community