TORRANCE — Celebrating 50 years of friendship with the city of Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture, the Torrance Sister City Association (TSCA), one of the most successful sister-city programs in the country and operating since 1973, proudly presents the Friendship Festival, an evening of music and arts at the James R. Armstrong Theater, 3330 Civic Center Dr. in Torrance, on Saturday, Feb. 18, at 7 p.m.

The Friendship Festival will feature the inspiring talents of past Torrance and Kashiwa student exchange students who today are highly accomplished performing artists, and will also include a showcase of visual artists in the main lobby.

TSCA invites the local community and all present and past TSCA members, delegates and host families to join the contingent of 50 Kashiwa city representatives and friends traveling from Japan to attend this commemorative event.

Gifted vocalists, including the MacIntyre Family Singers, whose matriarch, the late Carole MacIntyre, was a 1977 Torrance student delegate, will perform.

Also appearing is a special artist from Japan, Ittetsu Kojima, a 1993 Kashiwa delegate, who performs under the stage name Shinoharu Tatekawa. He has achieved master rank in the art of rakugo, traditional Japanese storytelling, and will delight the audience with a unique rakugo in English.

Opera vocalists include Tami Ooka, a 1980 Kashiwa student delegate, and 2019 Torrance delegate David Contreras. Opening the concert is the Torrance Civic Chorale, which includes a 1987 delegate, and closing the evening is taiko drummer and 2015 Torrance delegate Alex Ito.

Tickets to the Friendship Festival are available at, by phone, (310) 781-7171, or at the Armstrong Theatre box office. Visit for more information regarding all 50th anniversary festivities, including a Golden Jubilee picnic scheduled on Feb. 18.

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