A celebration of Japanese food, art, music and dance

This Japanese meal goes beyond sushi.

The NorthWest Language Academy (in Washington) is inviting guests to an immersive evening into Japanese culture that kicks off with sushi then continues into a celebration of other Japanese food, art, music and dance.

One of the highlights of the event is watching Chef Kotaro Kumita of Seattle's Shiro's Sushi in action.

This latest installment of NorthWest Language Academy's Language of Food event, "The Riches of Japan," is to be held June 23 in Langley.

The event begins with an afternoon cooking class, from 2 to 5 p.m., that will demonstrate the techniques of sushi and other traditional favorites. The class will be led by Chef Kotaro, who studied under Shiro Kashiba, founder of the iconic Seattle restaurant, Shiro's Sushi, according to a press release. 

Chef Kotaro will prepare a traditional Japanese dinner, served family style on the language academy's garden terrace. Guests will be served appetizers, sake and Japanese beer.

While dining, guests will be entertained with traditional koto and shakuhachi music, and a performance by the Sound Singers Japanese Chorus. Kimonos, Japanese quilts and other fiber arts will be on display. Guests can ask the artists questions or take a lesson in wearing a kimono, according to press material.

The goal of this event is to have guests explore Japanese cuisine while soaking in other aspects of Japanese culture, which includes learning past traditions.

Featured artists on the program include One World Taiko Drummers, Kabuki master Mary Ohno and the Kabuki Dance Academy.

"The Riches of Japan" is from 6 to 9 p.m. June 23 at the NWLA cultural center, 5023 Langley Road, Langley, WA. Cost is $75 for dinner and performances, $45 for the cooking class.

Seating is limited; reserve your place early by calling 360-321-2101 or go to info@nwlanguageacademy.com.

NorthWest Language Academy is a nonprofit organization that promotes cultural enrichment through the study of language and culture.

To learn more about NWLA and upcoming programs or classes, visitwww.nwlanguageacademy.com. Overnight accommodations are available in the cultural center's guesthouse.

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