A Song Film By Kishi Bashi: Omoiyari

Omoiyari: A Song Film by Kishi Bashi

USA | 2023 | 75 min. | Justin Taylor Smith, Kaoru Ishibashi

October 8, 2023

SIFF DocFest

Violinist and songwriter Kaoru Ishibashi (better known as Kishi Bashi) embarks on a musical journey to understand WWII era Japanese Incarceration, assimilation, and what it means to be a minority in America today.

Producers JJ Gerber and Jenny Mills scheduled to attend. Join us beforehand at Traveling Goat from 5:00-7:00pm for a happy hour sponsored by Seattle Documentary Association.

Individual Tickets: Select showtime to purchase
Passes: $100 | $75 SIFF Members - Access to all screenings


Select showtime for pricing and tickets.

Sunday, October 8, 2023

Buy Pass

Following reports of the rise of anti-Asian violence and the immigration crisis at the US-Mexico border, Ishibashi sees a media interview linking these events with the incarceration of Japanese-Americans during WWII, raising questions for him about his own Asian-American identity. Ishibashi and co-director Justin Taylor Smith set off on a journey across the country to learn about this history and explore how empathy (“Omoiyari” in Japanese) and the lack of it has played key roles in our modern quest for social equality. Along the way, he improvises and writes new music, exploring his own identity as a bi-cultural American. Using never before seen archival footage from the camps, mixed with breathtaking visual storytelling, Kaoru weaves together a personal tale using history, music, and current events to create a portrait of America from the perspective of someone caught between two worlds.

  • Director: Justin Taylor Smith, Kaoru Ishibashi
  • Premiere Status: Seattle
  • Country: USA
  • Year: 2023
  • Running Time: 75 min.
  • Producer: JJ Gerber, Jim Angelo, Jenny Mills, Justin Taylor Smith, Kaoru Ishibashi
  • Cinematographers: Max Ritter
  • Editors: Justin Taylor Smith
  • Music: Kishi Bashi
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Filmography: Bashi: Debut Feature Film; Smith: Depth Perception (2017)
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • US Distributor: MTV Documentary Films, Film Collaborative