Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Nippon Budokan Hall
The Nippon Budokan Hall (日本武道館;Nippon Budōkan) is an arena in central Tokyo.
For many Westerners, the Budokan is synonymous with large-scale rock concerts. It was here that the Beatles made their Japan debut and Bob Dylan was the first of many to release a "Live at the Budokan" album. The Nippon Budokan, however, was originally built for the Judo competition in the 1964 Summer Olympics, hence its name, rendered into English as "martial arts hall".
Though it still functions as a venue for big musical events, its primary purpose is for Japanese martial arts. It contains three halls, the largest of which holds 14,000 people and is modeled after a hall in Horyuji Temple in Nara. The national championships of the different branches of the martial arts are held here annually.
The Nippon Budokan is located in Kitanomaru Park in the center of Tokyo, two minutes' walking distance from Kudanshita Subway Station, and near Yasukuni Shrine. This 42 m (140 ft) high imposing octagonal structure holds 14,201 people (arena seats: 2,762, 1st floor seats: 3,199, 2nd floor seats: 7,760, and standee: 480).
The national championships of the different branches of the martial arts (Judo, Kendo, Karate, Aikido, Shorinji Kempo, Kyudo, Naginata, etc.) are held annually at the Budokan. For wrestling fans the Budokan means professional wrestling's big shows. Now, All Japan Pro Wrestling holds seven big shows, and New Japan Pro holds a few shows, at the Budokan a year.
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