July 23, 1982
Well, to welcome you all here today is indeed a great pleasure for me, as one interested in the art of entertainment. We're grateful that you've come to America to introduce us to Kabuki, a 400-year-old art form little known here.
To most Americans, Japanese history before the nineteenth century is clouded in mystery and romance. Your tour should help us to understand better the flavor of those days and history of the Japanese people. We're especially honored that such a renowned troupe should be here to introduce us to Kabuki.
Prime Minister Suzuki reminded us of the vigor and the vitality represented by Japan in the United States when he visited here. We're pleased you now visit to share the vigor and vitality of Kabuki with the people of the United States.
I wish you good luck in your performances and a pleasant time while you're with us. And thank you for this privilege of peering into the soul of Japan.
Note: The President spoke at 1:45 p.m. in the State Dining Room at the White House. Present for his greeting were eight actors and the vice president of the Grand Kabuki of Japan theatrical company.