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776: Streep talk
775: World of difference
774: Shocks and Bonds
773: Viva La Revolución
772: Jacqui Bayne
768: Beyond the universe
767: Yasuhito Endo
766: Aroon Mahtani
765: Dr. Hidemi Akai
764: Badr Hari
763: Mizuki Kubodera
761: Patrick W. Galbraith
760: Jean-Pierre Felix
759: Philippe Grau
758: Emi Kashiwara & Elekiteru
757: Aura Virginia Chirculescu
756: Aaron Davis
755: Happy days
754: Bryan Au
753: Martin van der Linden
752: Qinggelete
751: Chuck Johnson
750: Mike Applegate (aka Magic Mike)
749: Yukie Kito
748: Steve Kaufmann
746: Samira Zarghami
745: Raising the Bar
744: Pierre-Gilles Delorme
743: David F. Hoenigman
742: Miwa Gardner
741: Kevin Cooney
740: Kyle Cleveland
739: JJ
738: Bruce Stronach
737: Yoichiro Dennis Ide
736: Mike Garrett
735: Hiroki Suehara
734: Rise and Shrine
733: Patrik Washburn
732: Michael Bumgardner
731: Patricia Bader-Johnston
730: Darin Maki
729: Hiroshi Fujimaki
728: Misha Janette
727: Jon Mitchell
725: Hokuto Konishi
724: Rita Lamah Hankach
723: Kisui Nakazawa
722: Angela Jeffs
721: Simon Wood
720: Yasuko Yokoyama
715: Jason Kelly
714: Dominica Serigano
713: Erik Gain
712: Genevieve Maylam
711: Masahiro Gono
710: Eikou Sumura
709: Eikou Sumura
708: Malcolm Thompson
707: Makiko Tsuji
706: Dominic Allen
705: Maria Heitanen
704: Beckie Cassidy
703: Jett Edwards
702: Yoshinobu Furuichi
701: Silvestre Jacobi
700: Jah-Light Sound System
699: Daniel Velazques
698: Lynne Charles
697: Eric Bragg
695: Susan Nichols
694: Anna Kunnecke
693: Kenneth Pechter
692: Kazu Wakui
691: Antonio Inoki
690: Hiroko Noguchi
689: Richard Bysouth
688: Eric Bjorndahl
687: Andrew Shuttleworth
686: Sayuri Suzuki
685: Yurie Hatanaka
684: Miogi Takii
683: Thierry Cohen
682: Ahmed M. Elmardi
681: Aya Kitagawa
680: Suzanne Ng and Yoriko Soma
679: Ricco DeBlank
677: Takenari Shibata
676: Kirk R. Patterson
675: Satoko Yahata
674: Flavia Nishimura
673: Ryo Shoji
672: Chip Eckton
671: Yuko Ito
670: Marja Kullberg
669: Laur Meyrieux
668: Slavomir Stanislaw Kowalewski
667: Ryan McGuire
664: Life force
663: Steve Marshall
662: Jeff Klein
661: Ahn Soon Han
660: Straight shooter
659: Marcello Pietrantonio
658: Glitterball 2006
657: Alison Roberts-Brown
656: Girl on the go
655: Rob Hoey
654: Kahori Ochi
653: Ed Wells
652: Haruka Orth
651: Laura Cook
650: Uleshka Asher
649: Full speed ahead
648: Katsumi Namekata
647: Top talent
646: No heels, no life
645: Joanna Roper
644: Lu Nagata
643: Kirill Konin
642: Gabriele Roberto
641: Carlos Gibbs
640: Blair Falahey
639: The Three Waiters
638: Simon Woodroffe
637: Tony Virili
636: Paul W. Creager
635: Randy Channell
634: Mari Takeuchi
633: Stephanie Schueller
632: Tara Tan Kitaoka
631: Katherine Mok
630: Bob Tobin and Hitoshi Ohashi
629: Tommy Kullberg
628: Toshio Nagashima
627: Eiko Kondo
626: Embrey Ramon Williams
625: Neil Day
624: Mong-Lan
623: Tor Hideki Kashio
622: Elizabeth Heilman Brooke
621: Louis Carlet
620: Theo Panagiotoulias
619: Lionel Gougne
618: Sarajean Rossitto
617: Christian Hassing
616: Kiho Takashima
614-615: David Wagner
613: Heather Stuart
612: Erica Angyal
611: Jack McLean
610: Fumine Yakumo
609: Yasutoshi Hirabayashi
608: Yoko Hijikata
607: Jim Frederick
605: Yuka Murakami
604: Chayne Ellis
603: Marco Antonio Nakata
602: Kicking Back
601: Stand by your man
600: Hero worship
599: The Candy man
598: Heart strings
597: Sweet and sour
596: Subtitle subtleties
595: The right moves
594: Mother’s day
593: The clone ranger
592: A career kicks off
591: Woman of substance
590: Final conflict
589: World Ready for ‘War’
588: Fun in the sun
587: New life for an old hero
586: Fun and games
585: Knockout punch
584: Patrick’s day
583: Marcia marches on
582: Brunch break
581: Kingdom come
580: Gentle as a beast
579: Prime time
578: Devil of a time
577: In first Gere
576: Bright spark
575: Rei of sunshine
574: A star is reborn
573: In search of geisha
572: Marshall law
571: In the Nic of time
570: Holding a grudge
569: Bourne again
568: Soap opera
567: Alexander and friends
566: Oceans apart
565: A night at the opera
564: Just joshing
563: McPain in the neck
561-562: Hanks for everything
560: Reading between the Klines
559: Risqué business
558: Sky highs
557: Korean boom
556: Queen Victoria
555: Glitter Ball
554: Peter Miller
553: Ralph Frehner
552: Dimension K
551: Tokyo Game Show
550: US Embassy
549: I, Robot Premiere
548: Mauve
547: Xterra Japan
546: Earth Celebration
545: Idée R-bar
544: Laforet Museum
543: Hara Museum
542: Fuji Rock Festival’04
541: Bunkamura Museum of Art

star struck

Heart strings
British violinist Diana Yukawa’s musical journey started 20 years ago with a tragedy on a mountain in Gunma
By Chris Betros

Perry Curtis

On Aug 12, violinist Diana Yukawa climbed Mt. Osutaka
in Gunma Prefecture and played an uplifting composition called Short Story in memory of the 520 people who died in the 1985 Japan Airlines crash. It’s a pilgrimage the 19-year-old has done before in honor of the father whom she never knew, Akihisa, who was on board that fateful flight. “It was my first visit there in three years,” she says. “I was really determined to celebrate my father’s life with something positive this year.”

Yukawa was born three weeks after the crash, and along with her older sister Cassie and her British mother Susanne Bayly, she has spent the last 20 years trying to come to terms with the tragedy. The family’s story—especially their battle to get compensation from JAL—is the stuff of soap operas and has been well documented. Yukawa’s musical talent gained her overnight fame in Japan when she played a tribute on the mountain a few years ago. She has put out two CDs, performed at concerts, and appeared on numerous TV programs.

Yukawa wishes she could have had a different history. “I have been interviewed so many times in Japan,” she says. “I don’t want to be just connected to that tragedy, even though it is my personal history and I have been to Mt. Osutaka many times. I want to take those experiences and use them to make something better for the future.” Yukawa is now working on a new and defining musical sound with elements of classical and pop. She will give her fans a preview at a special concert on Sept 20 at Tokyo FM Hall, an event that will also serve as her coming-of-age celebration. Of her new sound, she says: “It is basically combining different styles and cultures.”

Yukawa chats happily in a very down-to-earth manner. Although she has been studying the violin since she was 5, she dislikes words like “crossover” and “child prodigy.” A full-time music student in London, Yukawa also enjoys a life away from her violin. “I love going to museums and dancing at clubs with friends. It’s important to have a balanced life. And I couldn’t do without my dogs and cats.” It has been a bit of a struggle at times. When JAL withdrew its scholarship a few years ago, Yukawa had to sell her 1656 Amati violin to help her family make ends meet. Thanks to some sponsors, she was able to continue her music studies and now plays a rare Guarneri del Gesu.

Yukawa has been to Japan many times, but is not sure if she could live here. “I love Japan and feel my heritage strongly, but I don’t think I could fit in permanently. I do enjoy playing here. People in so many different age groups come to my concerts.” Her two CDs, which were aimed at the Japanese market, have sold very well and she is starting to think about a third one, featuring her new sound.

So that means many more trips to Japan. In a positive note for the future, Yukawa and her mom flew here on JAL, the first time in 20 years, but she is dubious about the airline. “They are still having problems with safety,” she says. “They don’t seem to have learned from the tragedy.”



The puck stops here
By Rob Smaal

Hokkaido native Yutaka Fukufuji last month became the first Japanese player to sign a professional contract with a National Hockey League team when the soft-spoken 22-year-old inked a two-year deal with the Los Angeles Kings. A former Kokudo goaltender, Fukufuji has already had some impressive performances in North America since his debut in the East Coast Hockey League in 2003. He was named Rookie of the Month in January that year after winning seven straight games with the Cincinnati Cyclones.

You have been compared to MLB pitcher Hideo Nomo and soccer star Hidetoshi Nakata. Was it your dream growing up to play goal in the NHL?
Actually, I didn’t start playing goalie until I was 11. Before that I was a forward. My dream as a kid wasto play for Kokudo. I thought that was as good as it gets.

Are there any goalies in the NHL you particularly admire?
I’m a big fan of Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils.

Is it tough to communicate with your teammates in the US?
Not really. I learned to speak English watching Seinfeld re-runs on TV.

How about the food over there? Do you miss Japanese food?
I like American food. Buffalo chicken wings are my favorite.

What’s the toughest adjustment playing in the US so far?
Those long bus trips you have to make in the minor leagues. Those are tough.

In North America the game is more physical than in Japan, and even the goalies get into fights. Are you ready for that?
It already happened last season (with the Bakersfield Condors). There was a big brawl and I had to fight the other goalie. I just grabbed his jersey and held on tight, so it wasn’t too bad.

The LA Kings open training camp Sept 14, and the NHL regular season starts Oct 5. The Asia League expects to start on Sept 23/24.

Would you like to comment on this article? Send a letter to the editor at letters@metropolis.co.jp.