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Japan Matsuri 2015

Event preview

LONDON’S very own festival of Japanese culture, Japan Matsuri, returns on Saturday, September 19, 2015 in Trafalgar Square. A regular fixture now in the London calendar, this annual festival brings people together to enjoy Japanese food, music, dance, and activities for all the family. And it’s free.

This year, the festival is celebrating a special anniversary – 150 years of friendship between London and Japan and the story of the Satsuma Students from Kagoshima.

There will be special appearances from a number of acts from Kagoshima including the spectacular Izaku Taiko Odori (Izaku Drum Dancers), the brave samurai character Satsuma Kenshi Hayato and Guribu, Kagoshima’s yuru-kyara mascot.

With two stages, there is plenty to see all day with an exciting programme of martial arts, the thrilling sounds of taiko drumming, festival dance and this year’s special Japan Matsuri Song with Naomi Suzuki. Fancy joining in the ever popular Nodojiman karaoke contest!

Enjoy the atmosphere with Japanese festival food from the numerous stalls. Join in the fun in the family activities area with games and dressing in kimonos, or try your hand at Japanese cartoons on the manga wall.

Family Fun in the Activity Tent and The Manga Art Wall

Japan Matsuri 2015 offers a fantastic family fun day with traditional Japanese games and opportunities to learn the secrets of Origami and Japanese Calligraphy as well as your chance to be a manga artist and display your masterpiece in front of the National Gallery.

Throughout the day in the Activity Tent there will be an opportunity to play traditional Matsuri games and to learn a variety of Japanese crafts. Origami, calligraphy and manga art workshops will be held during the day.

London Japan Matsuri Theme Song and Music Video Production with Naomi Suzuki (MC & Singer for Japan Matsuri)

The song will receive its debut at this year’s festival in Trafalgar Square. Naomi Suzuki is UK-based and the “most well known Japanese singer in the UK”. She has been the host of Japan Matsuri since the first event seven years ago, and will sing the Japan Matsuri theme song this year.

She will be singing about our feelings for Japan for the whole world to hear, and making a Japanese festival song that everyone can sing and dance along to.

Spectators are invited to join in the fun and perform in the Japan Matsuri Song, “Ibuki”, music video!! As the song is performed on stage, a music video will be shot (12pm, 3pm, and 6pm).

Singing and dancing together will promote Japan from London, a musical hotspot, by joining the thoughts and feelings of Japanese people the world over. The aim is to make people around the world happy through this song, which symbolizes Japanese culture and the power of music.

150 years ago, 19 young men secretly left Satsuma for the UK to embark on a period of study in London. They were intrepid pioneers and paved the way for friendly relations to exist between our two countries.

In celebration of links between the UK and Satsuma, present-day Kagoshima, Japan Matsuri has the pleasure of welcoming some special performers from Kagoshima in Japan.

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