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Kansai to foster people inheriting traditional arts

An institution aimed at preserving Kansai's traditional performing arts will be established in Osaka in 2008, according to Yoshihisa Akiyama, chairman of the Kansai Economic Federation (Kankeiren). The institution, tentatively called the ""Kamigata (Kansai) Traditional Performing Arts School,"" will be housed in a commercial building to be built on a land tract in Fukushima Ward, Osaka City, where the Osaka University Hospital used to stand.
The school, which will have a floor space of 400 square meters, will primarily train young people who will inherit Noh, Bunraku (puppet show) and Kabuki, all of which have been recognized as World Intangible Cultural Heritages by UNESCO. In future, it will be used as a venue where students of primary and middle schools in the Kansai region will learn Kamigata traditional performing arts as part of their school curriculum.
Kabuki actor Sakata Tojuro, Gidayu reciter Takemoto Sumitayu and Noh actor Katayama Kuroemon will likely be named advisers to the committee.
For inquiries, please contact Secretariat and Public Affairs Group, General Affairs Bureau, Kansai Economic Federation (Tel:06-6441-0105) URL http://www. kankeiren.or.jp/