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Early Japanese Animation at London's Barbican this June 2022

Date: 2022 May 17 19:29

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The good folks from the Barbican in London have just sent us details of a very special cinema screening of Early Japanese Animation with live and electronic accompaniment by the Guildhall' School with Benshi narration. The screening and performance is will run on Sunday 5th June 2022 at 15:00 at Barbican Cinema 1.

It's not everyday you get a selection of rarely screened early Japanese animation, showing some of the very first anime films, accompanied by electro-acoustic music with Benshi narration! Tomoko Komura will be performing the benshi narration. The films span from 1925 to 1935.

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Press release as follows:

Early Japanese Animation

Barbican Cinema

Early Japanese Animation (12A*) + live and electronic accompaniment by the Guildhall' School + Benshi narration
Sun 5 Jun 2022, 3.00 pm, Cinema 1

A Silent Film and Live Music event featuring a selection of rarely screened early Japanese animation, showcasing some of the very first anime films from 1925-35, which will be accompanied by electro-acoustic music, with Benshi narration.

Very few of the earliest animated films from Japan survive - after being screened alongside live action features, films were often sold on from cinemas to smaller mobile venues where they would be broken down and sold as single frames.

The films that have been preserved in archives offer a fascinating glimpse into the beginnings of a rich history of Japanese animation which continues to this day. They include:

  • The Pot (1925, Dir Sanae Yamamoto, w/ English subtitles, 17 min)
  • Ubasuteyama (1925, Dir Sanae Yamamoto, w/ English subtitles, 18 min)
  • Rhythm (1935, Dir Shigeji Ogino, 4 min)
  • Diseases Spread (1926, Dir Sanae Yamamoto, w/ English subtitles, 14 min)
  • The Blossom Man (1928, Dir Yasuji Murata, w/ English subtitles, 5 min)
  • Two Worlds (1929, Dir Yasuji Murata, w/ English subtitles, 15 min)
  • Propagate (1935, Dir Shigeji Ogino, 4 min)
  • A Day after a Hundred Years (1933, Dir Shigeji Ogino, w/ English subtitles, 10 min)
For the latest information on new release screenings in the Barbican Cinemas and Cinema On Demand please visit the Barbican website

The Barbican believes in creating space for people and ideas to connect though its international arts programme, community events and learning activity.

To keep its programme accessible to everyone, and to keep investing in the artists it works with, the Barbican needs to raise more than 60% of its income through ticket sales, commercial activities and fundraising every year.
Donations can be made here:

New Releases:

Standard: £13.50
Barbican members: £10.80
Young Barbican £ 5.00
Concessions: £12.00
Under 18s: £6

# Certificate to be confirmed
* This film has been locally classified by the City of London Corporation

About Barbican Cinema

We connect audiences with a curated programme of international cinema; from celebrated filmmakers to ground-breaking and under-heard voices from past and present.

Our programmes are presented in Cinemas 1 in the main centre and Cinemas 2&3 on Beech Street. We also present selected programmes and new release titles on our online platform Barbican Cinema On Demand which is available to stream across the UK.

Our programme ranges from thematic seasons that respond to today's world, to new releases, Screentalks, cross-artform collaborations, family events, access screenings and event cinema that presents the performing arts on screen.

We showcase the work of emerging filmmakers, as well as less familiar work of exceptional filmmakers from the UK and around the world.

We champion the work of Barbican young programmers and give stage to emerging musicians in our ongoing film & live music series which includes our flagship collaboration with the Guildhall School of Music & Drama.

As part of a cross-arts centre, our cinemas are a cultural space for people to share the viewing experience.

We strive to be inclusive in everything we do; providing platforms for the widest possible range of filmmakers and ensuring we are an open, welcoming and accessible venue for all our audiences.

We programme free offsite events in east London, offer reduced price tickets to 14-25 year olds through the Young Barbican membership scheme and special student ticket prices.

About the Barbican

A world-class arts and learning organisation, the Barbican Barbican pushes the boundaries of all major art forms including dance, film, music, theatre and visual arts. Its creative learning programme further underpins everything it does. Over 1.1 million people attend events annually, hundreds of artists and performers are featured, and more than 300 staff work onsite.

The architecturally renowned centre opened in 1982 and comprises the Barbican Hall, the Barbican Theatre, The Pit, Cinemas 1, 2 and 3, Barbican Art Gallery, a second gallery the Curve, foyers and public spaces, a library, Lakeside Terrace, a glasshouse conservatory, conference facilities and three restaurants. The City of London Corporation is the founder and principal funder of the Barbican Centre.

The Barbican is home to Resident Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra; Associate Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra; Associate Ensembles the Academy of Ancient Music and Britten Sinfonia, Associate Producer Serious, and Artistic Partner Create. Our Artistic Associates include Boy Blue, Cheek by Jowl, Deborah Warner, Drum Works and Michael Clark. The Los Angeles Philharmonic are the Barbican's International Orchestral Partner, the Australian Chamber Orchestra are International Associate Ensemble at Milton Court and Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra are International Associate Ensemble.

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Source: Barbican
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