CONNECT JAPAN 2015 in Thailand Photo Report : FES☆TIVE & notall Performed at TGU × CHEERZ Stage!
From May 15th to May 17th, the ‘CONNECT JAPAN 2015’ event gave Japan lovers quite an experience to remember at the Central World Center in the heart of Thailand’s capital city, Bangkok. After Bangkok, the event will also take place in Pattaya, Hat-Yai, Chiangmai, as well as 4 other cities in Thailand.
‘CONNECT JAPAN 2015’ is aimed at bringing some of Japan’s most popular fashion, culture, food and local products to Thailand. It is also being used as a chance to spread knowledge of various travel opportunities in Japan and overall, is an event that is set to inform the people of Thailand of some of the coolest experiences that Japan has to offer.
In Bangkok, the city that ‘CONNECT JAPAN 2015’ made its first footprints, the event was split up into 5 different zones to give visitors an in-depth experience of Japanese culture to remember. Some of the many activities that visitors could experience included the ‘The Fukuoka Asia Collection (FACo)’, ‘JAPAN RUNWAY’, ‘JAPAN TRAVEL’, Moshi Moshi Nippon’, ‘FILM SHOWCASE’ and ‘SAKE FESTIVAL’. ‘The Fukuoka Asia Collection (FACo)’ comprised of 3 different fashion shows, while the ‘JAPAN RUNWAY’ promoted a variety of Japanese musicians and performers strutting their stuff on the main stage. The ‘JAPAN TRAVEL’ section demonstrated some of the most charming points of each area of Japan and at the ‘Moshi Moshi Nippon’ section of the event visitors could experience a variety of Japan’s pop culture, such as karaoke and purikura (instant photo stickers). At ‘FILM SHOWCASE’, a variety of newly released Japanese films, while at the ‘SAKE FESTIVAL’, visitors could experience Japanese sake tastings as well as hot springs through the imitation foot bath.
At the event, even ‘Tokyo Girls Update’ opened up a booth in coordination with supporting application ‘CHEERZ’. With the help of CHEERZ and 2 idols, we were able to join and go home as winners at ‘notall’ FES☆TIVE. On the launch day (May 15th), some idol fans that had heard that there would be no performance gathered around the booth and 2 idol groups came onstage, denied the rumor and the scene turned into something that resembled paparazzi.
The main event’s program took place on the weekend of the 16th and 17th of May at a luxurious shopping center. During these days the shopping center took on a new feel as it was now filled with many young fans wearing Japanese idol T-shirts and penlights that continued to gather around the main stage, anxiously waiting for the launch of the event.
On the ‘Moshi Moshi Nippon’ stage, Asobi System’s ever-popular twin models AMIAYA, as well as other big names such as Una and TEMPURA KIDZ sang, danced and strutted their way across the stage. You could feel the temperature of the venue tangibly rise from pure excitement as each of these groups made their way on stage!
At the ‘Tokyo Girls Update’ × ‘CHEERZ’ stage, the shopping center’s quiet atmosphere changed completely, and turned into a venue filled with excited fans and explosions of screams from those fans as ‘notall’ and FES☆TIVE made their way on stage.
One quick look at the viewing spaces of the 2nd and 3rd floors and you could streams of people stopping to look to see what the all the excitement was about, with many of those people then clearly unable to take their eyes off the dazzling performances given by the idols. After the performances, fans flooded in to the booth to send the idols off with a warm goodbye. The idols gave their thoughts and feelings in Japanese on stage as fans took their fill of photos and screamed in excitement at the cultural exchange meet. On the final day (May 18th), FES☆TIVE fans presented Akari Shiina with a birthday cake, in celebration of her birthday which is just one day after.
With all the reporters, idols and passionate fans combined, this event was most certainly one of great excitement. ‘Tokyo Girls Update’ X ‘CHEERZ’ members could most certainly feel the wild enthusiasm of the Thai fans during our time at this event, and as a result, we felt that Thai is most certainly a country that is putting its full support for Japan’s idol groups and their endeavors.
Translated by Cheryl Coyle
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