Programming Committee

Mandate: To research and identify artists, curators, art forms, and art organizations that give voice to the Japanese Canadian community and/or represent Japanese heritage.



In consultation with the Artistic Director:

  • Research, review and recommend long-term program plans.
  • Participate in recommendation process for annual Festival theme and assists in selection of invited Festival performers and artists.
  • Participate in the selection and evaluation process for Festival applicants (professional and community artists).
  • Present ideas for possible programming.
  • Program, curate or coordinate special projects (optional).
  • Liaise with local organizations in order to identify and implement specific programs (ie. Sponsor Japanese film in other film festivals, co-present a Japanese artist, etc.) and assist in the development of co-operative events and programs
  • Identify specific social issues in contemporary art practice.

If you would like to join this committee, please email the Artistic Director –  604.739.9388.

Current Members

Carly Yoshida

Kevin Takahide Lee

Mike Okada

Emily Wu

Erica Isomura

Kohei Yoshino

Members’ Bios

Carly Yoshida is the breaking news producer for CTV Vancouver and has been working in the broadcast industry since 2010. She has Japanese-Canadian heritage, and her family originally hailed from B.C. before settling in Toronto after the Second World War. Although she grew up in Toronto, she has many fond memories of visiting family on the west coast and volunteering at the Powell Street Festival. Carly recently moved to Vancouver from Toronto and is thoroughly enjoying living on the west coast.

Tenor Kevin Takahide Lee has a Bachelor’s of Music degree in Opera Performance from the University of British Columbia and a Master’s of Music in Voice Performance from The University of Western Ontario. Currently, Kevin’s musical roles include Vancouver Opera chorus, choir directing, teaching and music recreation for senior homes and the city of Burnaby. This past year Kevin had the honour of portraying Japanese Canadian settler, soldier and internee Zennosuke Inouye. In addition, Kevin participated as a Japanese Canadian panellist with the Inspirit panel, a part of Reconciliation week. Finally, Kevin is directing the New Comers choir which is based out of the Nikkei National Museum and Cultural Centre. To follow Kevin you can go to

Mike Okada works in the marketing industry, where he specializes in copywriting and brand consulting, and he is excited to be bringing his skills to continue building upon the successes of festivals past. Born and raised in BC, Mike is a fourth generation Japanese Canadian who has been coming to the Powell Street Festival since he was young. As a member of the board, he looks forward to working with an amazing team, getting back in touch with his roots, and helping the next generation make their own lasting memories of the festival in the years to come.

Emily Wu is currently an Internal Coach and a Program Lead at University of British Columbia. Her current work involves developing, delivering, and managing innovative educational programs for adult professionals. As a first generation Taiwanese Canadian living and blending in multiple cultures, Emily finds stimulation in language, culture, and diversity. Emily has volunteered with Powell Street Festival since 2007. She loves the spirit of PSF, in particular connecting with community groups, celebrating arts and culture, and working with like-minded individuals that believe in the Society’s mission and values.