Publisher July 2013

Helping the Other Half

Partner has become a popular word, with many couples, sponsors, firms, friends, colleagues, countries and ideologues preferring this warm and fuzzy term to “the missus”, “comrade” or “collaborate”.

For members who suggested more BCCJ events that clearly demonstrate the UK–Japan partnership, three functions have been lined up.

Join us on 18 July at the Conrad Tokyo for 400 Night, to celebrate four centuries of diplomatic, trading and cultural relations between two distant island nations that share much more than an appreciation of a good cup of tea.

This national dress event will feature a slideshow of Choshu Five images, historic maps, photos from 65 years of the BCCJ’s highlights and recent events, as well as games, prizes and refreshments.

On 23 July, InterFM Executive Director Peter Barakan will lead a panel discussion on UK music as an export to Japan, the state of broadcast media here, and how he is turning around his radio station. As someone who would tune in to radio much more if there were less jive and more jazz, I am looking forward to this one.

Many Japanese like to say how much they love nature, often to cynical foreigners who take for granted organisations such as the UK’s National Trust, and look aghast at the concrete and metal carbuncles that blot an otherwise stunning countryside here.

On 10 September, the Association of National Trusts in Japan presents the case for corporate partners and explains its very different history, culture, vision and challenges. One of its key sponsors will talk about private-sector involvement and how we can help.

Sadly, one partnership has ended in tears. The International Theatre Company London—which performs every year in Japan at universities, high schools and other venues—has lost its sponsor to bankruptcy.

With Japanese subtitles, the six professional actors perform on a shoestring, and to a very high standard, many classic Shakespeare and modern plays, as well as dramatisations of novels.

If your firm is interested in supporting the arts while subsidising ticket sales as a marketing opportunity or to help UK–Japan cultural ties, please email me.

I am often buttonholed at events, for which I am grateful, most recently by a lecturer from an elite university who said she looks forward to using ACUMEN in the classroom, as some content is more relevant than a textbook. I hope we didn’t damage her students’ education too much in the June issue, where we misspelled Prince Akishino on page 9 and made conductor Bernard Haitink KBE look left-handed on page 44. Sorry for that.