2014 / Japanese stories to be staged at Huntington Library’s family day program, Oct. 11

Momotaro by Grateful Crane

“Momotaro: The Peach Boy” performed by the Grateful Crane Ensemble

Japanese American musical troupe The Grateful Crane Ensemble will be featured at “A Celebration of Stories” one-day family program celebrating all things literary in the Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens in San Marino on Saturday, Oct. 11.
Books will be brought to life through performances in the gardens along with reading, children’s craft activities, and more.

Music and storytelling by the Grateful Crane will take place in 15-minute presentations at 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., and 1:30 p.m. in The Huntington’s Chinese Garden.

The stories will include “Momotaro:  The Peach Boy,” “Tanabata,” and “The Tortoise and the Hare,” directed by Darrell Kunitomi and adapted by Soji Kashiwagi.

Children’s “book songs” composed by the Grateful Crane’s musical director Scott Nagatani, will also be performed.

The cast includes Aaron Aoki, Keiko Kawashima, Darrell Kunitomi, Kurt Kuniyoshi and Haruye Ioka.  Scott Nagatani will accompany the group on keyboards.

In addition to the Grateful Crane Ensemble, other participants in “A Celebration of Stories” event will include the Independent Shakespeare Company, LA Opera, Unbound Productions, the Beatrix Potter Society, and the Art Grist.

“This is going to be fun for the entire family,” said Soji Kashiwagi, executive producer of the Grateful Crane Ensemble. “Throughout the day, families can experience live Shakespeare, opera and storytelling, and learn something about Japanese culture through our stories.  We’re happy to play a part in this.”

The Huntington Library, Art Collection, and Botanical Gardens is located at 1151 Oxford Road in San Marino.  Weekend general admission tickets are $23 for adults, $18 for seniors, $13 for students (age 12 to 18), $8 for youth (age 5 to 11), and free for children under 5.

Huntington Members are admitted free.  All performances are included with museum admission.

Information:  www.huntington.org or (626) 405-2100.