Movies / Theater / Hall / Live House Spots in Japan

  • Tokyo Big Sight (Tokyo International Exhibition Center)
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    3.5
    679 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Tokyo Koutou-ku Ariake 3-11-1
    Located in the Ariake district of Tokyo's Koto City, this is Japan's largest convention center. It opened in 1996 and is used for various trade fairs and exhibitions throughout the year including business as well as cultural events. It is famous for hosting the Tokyo Motor Show and the Comic Market. The interior is mainly divided up into the Conference Tower, East Hall, East New Exhibition Hall, West Hall and Restaurant Avenue.

    Visited Tokyo Big Sight for a trade show and it is quite easily accessible on the Yurikanome line. The architecture is pretty interesting and worth a couple of photos. There is also a decent...

  • Makuhari Messe
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    3.5
    451 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Chiba Pref. Chibashi Mihama-ku Nakase 2-1
    A convention center capable of hosting domestic and international trade fairs, product fairs, exhibitions, events, and meetings. There’s always a host of fun programs being conducted at Makuhari Messe. In addition to 11 exhibition halls, there’s also numerous conference rooms, restaurants, and other facilities; the size of the structure will astound you. The shortest access routes for international exhibition halls 1-8 and 9-11, the Makuhari Event Hall, and the international conference rooms all differ, so be sure to check where the event you’re interested in is before heading out.

    Makuhari Messe looked a little shabby compared to Tokyo Big Site. The site was big enough but it looked so much outdated.

  • Kabukiza Theatre
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    4.5
    1005 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Chuou-ku Ginza 4-12-15
    This theater located in the Ginza area of Tokyo's Chuo City is dedicated solely to kabuki. The current building is the fifth iteration of the Kabuki-za, having undergone reconstruction and remodeling in accordance with destruction by fire, repairs, and changing eras since it opened in 1889. In addition to the many types of seats from the first floor box seats to the third floor seats, on the fourth floor are the popular “hito-maku miseki,” special seats that allow people to see any one act of a kabuki play. The building's Japanese-style exterior with its tiled roof and balustrades makes for a splendid balance with the Kabukiza Tower that stands behind it and the Ginza streetscapes. In the basement is the Kobikicho Plaza with souvenir shops and restaurants.

    Kabuki-za is to my understanding the most valued Kabuki theatre in Japan. The traditional art of kabuki is something unique and, of course, best appreciated by watching a play. The tickets can be...

  • Tokyo International Forum
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    4.0
    947 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Tokyo Chiyoda-ku Marunouchi 3-5-1
    A multipurpose public culture facility with eight halls of various sizes as well as 34 meeting rooms. The facility frequently hosts cultural events that help share with the world the unique charms of Japan. The airy Glass Building hall, walled in by huge glass panels, has been awarded three Michelin stars, and is a popular tourist spot in and of itself. The entire facility is decorated with works of art, and visitors can come and enjoy the building like an art museum.

    The Tokyo International Forum truly is a photography wonderland. Head into the main building and take the elevator to the 7th floor. There are so many cool angles to shoot in this architectural...

  • Ryogoku Kokugikan
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    4.5
    873 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Tokyo Sumida-ku Yokoami 1-3-28
    Called the Ryogoku Kokugikan, this is widely known as a venue for sumo competitions. It can accommodate more than 10,000 spectators and hosts various events besides sumo including pro-wrestling, boxing and concerts. Inside the venue’s shop visitors can purchase sweets and original merchandise featuring sumo motifs even when an official sumo tournament is not being held. The facility also houses the Sumo Museum where visitors can see color prints and ornamental aprons, as well as photos of past yokozuna champions.

    If youre reading this and still undecided, then i urge you to attend! Its unique experience that you can only get in Japan. Currently the seating is limited due to Covid-19 and the viewing time is...

  • Suntory Hall
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    4.5
    220 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Tokyo Minato-ku Akasaka 1-13-1
    "This classical music hall is located in Akasaka Ark Hills in Minato Ward, Tokyo. There are two performance halls, the large Main Hall and the smaller Blue Rose hall. Aiming to achieve the most beautiful sound quality in the world, all 2,006 seats in the Main Hall are arranged in terraced rows in what is called ""vineyard style,"" the first time this style has been employed in Japan. Performances by first-rate artists from across the country and the world are held here daily. The foyer has a drink area and shop and is designed to be a socializing space where adults can enjoy friendly conversation before performances and during breaks."

    NHK philosophy orchestra has played few times in a month. good music , good environment, fun night life

  • Saitama Super Arena
    Travel / Tourism
    Saitama Pref. Saitamashi Chuou-ku Shintoshin 8
    Saitama Super Arena is used as the site for many concerts and sporting events. Keyaki Hiroba, located adjacent to the arena and stadium, contains a number of cafes, taverns, and other eating and drinking establishments. The presence of a convenience store and a drugstore make the site especially convenient. Inside the arena is a temporary daycare center, so that parents can enjoy concerts and events without worrying about their children.
  • Osakajo Hall
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    4.0
    69 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Osaka Osakashi Chuou-ku Osakajou 3-1
    Situated inside Osaka Castle Park in Chuo Ward, Osaka City, Osaka Prefecture, this is the largest event hall in western Japan with a capacity of 16,000 people. It was built in 1983 as the site of the “Osaka Chikujo 400-year Festival,” and the main part of the building was built underground out of consideration for the surrounding scenery. Aside from the arena, there are several halls and restaurants on the site. Popular domestic and overseas artists’ concerts and various ceremonies are held here, as well as a number of events attended by a large number of people throughout the year.

    The Hall and the surrounding park had turned to a popular spot for local and tourists. It was really nice to stroll around. There were eateries and shops available for visitors. Pleasant area...

  • Bunkamura
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    4.0
    315 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Shibuya-ku Dougenzaka 2-24-1
    A multipurpose cultural facility located in the Dogenzaka area of Shibuya City dedicated primarily to music, theater, the fine arts, and film. The artistic and creative building houses and orchestra hall that serves as the home and regular venue of the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra. Bunkamura also has a performing arts theater, art museum, movie theater, fashionable cafés, and art shops, and is fast becoming a key cultural center. Bunkamura is one of the most popular places in Shibuya for enjoying culture and the arts in an elegant and mature setting.

    Bear in mind Bunkamura is under construction so most the theatrical events have been temporarily located to another nearby building on Meiji Dori.

  • Yokohama Arena
    Travel / Tourism
    Kanagawa Pref. Yokohamashi Kouhoku-ku Shinyokohama 3-10
    This multipurpose event arena, first opened in April 1989, can accommodate up to 17,000 people. Able to host concerts, ceremonies, and a variety of other events, Yokohama Arena has also been selected as one of the 100 best event halls in Japan. Yokohama Arena offers a full suite of features, including giant video monitor systems, sound systems suitable for a variety of events, and universally designed facilities. The surrounding area includes convenience stores, restaurants, and hotels as well.
  • Meijiza
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    4.0
    123 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Chuou-ku Nihombashihamachou 2-31-1
    Located just nearby the A2 exit of Hamacho Station, this is a playhouse that has been well-loved since it was established in 1873. Widely known as a hall for kabuki and shinpa (new drama), it is now host to a variety of performances including kayo concerts, contemporary drama, and musicals. The modern exterior of the Hamacho Center Building accommodates the internal appearance that retains the influence of Japanese-style architecture, and inside are a number of facilities such as a café, lounge, and long-established wagashi (Japanese sweets) shop that visitors can enjoy during the intermission. The Meijiza traditional taste of the Maku-no-uchi bento is the real pleasure of going to this theater.

    I really liked this show, especially its music. The whole show was a nice combination of some kabuki, dance, swordplay and some anime.

  • PACIFICO Yokohama
    Travel / Tourism
    Kanagawa Pref. Yokohamashi Nishi-ku Minatomirai 1-1-1
    This convention center is in the Minato Mirai area. The Pacific Convention Plaza Yokohama is one of the largest international conference halls in the world and hosts big global gatherings. It's connected to the Yokohama Grand Intercontinental Hotel and the National Convention Hall, the only national conference hall in Eastern Japan. It's also a MICE complex and holds a wide variety of events.
  • National Bunraku Theatre
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    4.5
    160 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Osaka Osakashi Chuou-ku Nippombashi 1-12-10
    The National Bunraku Theatre, which opened in 1984, is located in the Chuo Ward of Osaka City. The 753-seat Large Hall is mainly used for performances of Ningyo Joruri (Bunraku) puppet theatre, one of Japan’s traditional performing arts; it is also used as a venue for theatrical productions, dance performances, etc. The Small Hall is used for performances of Rakugo, Manzai, Rokyoku (Naniwa-bushi recitation), etc. The National Bunraku Theatre also holds special performances for schoolchildren etc. who may not be familiar with Bunraku, with explanations. The Exhibition Hall in the National Bunraku Theatre has permanent exhibitions of books etc. relating to the history of Bunraku, as well as holding special thematic exhibitions.

    I attended the National Bunraku theatre to see a Bunraku (puppetry performance). Three puppeteers work in unison to make the puppets come alive and a narrator accompanied by a samisen player...

  • National Theatre
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    4.5
    112 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Chiyoda-ku Hayabusachou 4-1
    This performance hall in Hayabusa-cho, Chiyoda City, Tokyo hosts performances of traditional Japanese performance arts. It features a large theater used for Kabuki theater, Nihon Buyo dance, and other performance arts. A small theater is used for Bunraku puppet theater, Japanese music, Nihon Buyo dance, Gagaku classical music, Shomyo Buddhist chants, and folk performing arts. The theater's vestibule, beloved for its great cherry blossoms, hosts a cherry blossom festival from late March to early April. The Traditional Performing Arts Information Center located behind the theater offers a range of facilities including exhibit halls and viewing rooms.

    Booked tickets on line from Australia to see an “Introduction to Kabuki” show which features a short lecture (from an actor) about Kabuki and two Kabuki scenes. English translations were available...

  • Shinbashi Enbujo
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    4.0
    105 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Chuou-ku Ginza 6-18-2
    This theater in the Ginza district of Tokyo's Chuo City was built in 1925. Constructed as a place to showcase the arts of Shinbashi geisha, it is now used to stage a variety of programs with a focus on kabuki, shinpa (new drama) and shin-kigeki (a new comedy troupe). The Shinbashi geisha's Azuma Odori, which is held every year for four days in May, is popular as a spring tradition in Tokyo in which guests can catch a glimpse of the culture in Japan's traditional pleasure quarters which are normally off-limits to first-timers. There are bento meals boxes to enjoy the tradition of the Shinbashi pleasure quarters and a complete cafeteria menu inside the theater.

    We were lucky enough to catch a show on 26 May 2019. (Only on for 4 days in Tokyo, I believe.) It consisted of 30 minutes dancing, then an intermission of 30 minutes (during which you could eat...

  • Zepp Tokyo
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    3.5
    21 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Koutou-ku Aomi 1-3-11
    A live music club in Odaiba and one of the largest in the nation, Zepp Tokyo is located directly underneath the giant Palette Town shopping center Ferris wheel. Able to accommodate up to 2,709 standing guests, the hall plays host to countless concerts featuring popular domestic and international artists and is also used for corporate events. Coin lockers are available for use as well as a bar. The closest station is Aomi Station.

    The quickest way to get to this live house would be to take to Aomi Station via the Yurikamome Line and its just a short walk from there to the back of the live house. You will turn left upon seeing...

  • ASAKUSA ENGEI HALL
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    4.0
    128 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Taitou-ku Asakusa 1-43-12
    This is a theater that conducts performance of rakugo (Japanese comedic storytelling) year-round. In addition to rakugo, there are also programs that include manzai (two-person comedy acts), skits and imitations. After opening in 1964, it gained popularity as a hall for comedy and famous artists such as Kinichi Hagimoto, “Beat” Takeshi and Kiyoshi Atsumi often performed there. Although there is a daytime part and a night-time part, there is no restriction on choosing one or the other so visitors can watch for the entire day. There is also a shop that sells bento lunch boxes, drinks and other merchandise. Tickets are only available for purchase on the day of the show.

    Asakusa Engei Hall is a theatre where an actor perform alone on stage telling comic stories in japanese so it helps if you know the language but even if you don’t, you may enjoy the environment and...

  • Miyakomesse
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    3.5
    36 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Okazakiseishoujichou 9-1
    This event venue was constructed in commemoration of the 1,200th anniversary of the ancient capital of Heian-Kyo and first opened its doors in 1996. The event hall is used for a variety of events such as those promoting traditional industries. The hall’s exhibition and meeting spaces are used for trade fairs and other functions. The venue also hosts the Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts and the Japan Design Museum, two permanent exhibitions which present the style and the traditional industries of Kyoto. A café/restaurant adjoins the museum, as well as the museum’s shop, which sells traditional crafts. Higashiyama Station is the closest station to the venue.

    Miyako Messe in Okazaki Park is an event space, but I seldom go. A part of Nitten exhibition was displayed in this place. So, I had the opportunity to visit it.

  • Uchiko-za Kabuki Theatre
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    4.5
    120 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ehime Pref. Kitagunuchikochou Uchiko 2102
    This is a two-story theatre building with a gabled and tiled roof which was built in 1916, and its wooden architectural structure is representative of Aichi Prefecture. It was temporarily remodelled into a cinema, and there were also plans to demolish the building due to its deterioration, but in 1985 due to the zeal of the townspeople, the building was restored to its original condition at the time of being initially constructed. Public performances are done making best use of such things as “hanamichi” (stage–passages), “mawari-butai” (revolving stage), “masu-seki” (box seats) and Japanese musical accompaniment behind black bamboo screen. Again it is also possible to participate in a tour of the interior of the theatre when there are no events being held.

    We spent a night in Uchiko and bought the pass to the main three attractions. This old theatre was beautifully restored. The guide used his iPad to translate basic information. Worth a trip!

  • Konpira Grand Theatre (Kanamaru-za)
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    4.5
    184 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kogaira-cho, Nakadatsu-gun, Kagawa Prefecture 1241
    This theater, located in Kotohira, Nakatado County, Kagawa Prefecture, is the oldest extant theater in Japan. It was built in 1835 as a playhouse for providing regular entertainment to believers in the seafaring deity Konpira, who had many followers in the Edo period. In 1970, it was designated a National Important Cultural Property. For four years beginning in 1972, it was restored and reconstructed in its present location, and it exudes the style and chic of the typical Edo period theater at the time. Every April, the “Shikoku Konpira Grand Kabuki Performance” is held, which attracts many kabuki fans from outside the prefecture.

    Just the building to see, no props. A short tour in english and then you can wonder around yourself, trying to image what it would be like during a performance.

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