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Shizuoka International Opera Competition

World-Class International Opera Competition

The Shizuoka International Opera Competition was established in 1996 to commemorate Tamaki Miura, one of Japan’s great divas. In 2003, this competition became the first vocal music competition in Asia to join the World Federation of International Music Competitions, and it has already gained a solid reputation in opera circles worldwide. The competition is held every three years in October or November at Act City in Hamamatsu. Contestants from all over the world are first selected through a preliminary audition and then compete over a six-day period. The prizewinners also appear in special concerts, which take place in Shizuoka and Tokyo. In addition, some extra events related to opera include the Prefectural Residents’ Opera and a series of lectures titled “What Is Opera?”


Korean baritone Kihun Yoon (left), Japanese soprano Nami Shigihara (middle), and Kazakhstani soprano Anastassiya Kozhukharova (left) were the prizewinning performers at the seventh competition in 2014

Art College for Cchildren in Fuji-no-kuni (the Home of Mt. Fuji)

Providing the Next Generation with Arts and Culture Experiences

In this program, a number of successful artists lead hands-on courses for elementary and junior high school students in Shizuoka. These classes give students the opportunity to appreciate culture, music, fine arts, theater, dance, literature, and traditional performing arts. The aim of this project is to cultivate the young participants’ innovation, independence, and individuality.


Special musical conducting lesson led by Yukio Kitahara

Izu Literature Festival—Link in Japanese Only

Promoting Shizuoka through Literary Events

Some of the most famous Japanese literary works are set in Shizuoka, especially in the Izu area. The annual Izu Literature Festival was established in 1997 as a way to publicize Shizuoka Prefecture through literature. This festival is marked by a variety of events, with the two main attractions being the Izu Literature Award and the Izu Literature School.


Izu Literature Award

The aims of this contest are to discover up-and-coming talent and to find literary works capable of claiming the mantle of Yasunari Kawabata’sIzu no Odoriko (The Dancing Girl of Izu) and Yasushi Inoue’sShirobambaThe contest has two categories: the Novel, Essay, and Travel Writing Section and the Message Section. Submitted works must be related to Shizuoka Prefecture’s topography, place names, famous people, or other elements.


Izu Literature School

This event takes place concurrently with the Izu Literature Award ceremony. The judges of the awards and literary specialists with connections to Shizuoka hold a symposium and discuss Shizuoka-related works and authors.


Shizuoka International Translation Competition discontinued in 2010


The 2013 prize winners

Fuji-no-kuni (Home of Mount. Fuji) Arts Festival

The Biggest General Arts Festival in Shizuoka Prefecture

The Fujinokuni Arts Festival, also called the Shizuoka Prefectural Arts Festival, has offered many opportunities to display and admire the works of Shizuoka-based artists for more than a half-century. Events that can be enjoyed here include cultural contests, exhibitions, and performances.



  • ・Arts Category (artworks, photos, calligraphy)
  • ・Literature Category (novels, plays, critiques, poems, tankas, haikus, etc.)
  • ・Music & Stage Category (choruses, theater performances)

Note: Contests are open to anyone who is originally from, currently lives in, or works in Shizuoka Prefecture and is at least fifteen years old (excluding junior high school students).


Exhibitions and Performances

  • ・Arts Exhibitions (prize winners, students)
  • ・Music & Stage Category (choruses, theater performances, dances, traditional Japanese music)
  • ・Life & Culture Category (flower arrangements, suiseki stones))


Arts exhibition in 2014