Launch of Cool Japan Month

With the aim to raise awareness of the Japanese culture among overseas markets especially in Asia, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) held the launch of Cool Japan Month on the 6th of October 2011 at the ION Sky.

Senior Vice Minister Tadahiro Matsushita from Japan (METI) shared with everyone how he believed a win-win relationship can be built when Japanese small/medium enterprises and younger designer/creator shouldering COOL JAPAN have close tie ups with the power of transmitting information and business network expanded over the region.

In his speech, Mr Chan Chun Sing (Acting Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports and Minister of State for Information, Communications and the Arts) welcomed this cooperation and said that he would like to celebrate the start of a cooperative relationship between Singapore and Japan as they try to expand Japanese businesses and culture all over Asia by utilizing Singapore’s strategic role as a hub among Asian countries.

And to celebrate the launch of the Cool Japan Month, the Kagami Biraki was held on stage with Senior Vice Minister Tadahiro Matsushita, Minister of State Mr Chan Chun Sing, Japanese Shamisen band Kuni-Ken and Japanese Model Midori Kuzuoka gracing the ceremony.

The Kagami biraki is a 300 year old ceremony where a sake cask was broken open by the fourth Tokugawa Shogun with his Daimyo (Japanese feudal lords) before going to war. The war was later won and the ceremony was born. It is now performed at significant events worthy of being celebrated and surely it was fitting that it was held to celebrate the launch of the Cool Japan Month.

And to give everyone present a taste of the Japanese Culture, Japanese Shamisen band, Kuni-Ken gave two live performance pieces on stage for everyone present to get a feel of the unique sounds of the Shamisen which is a Japanese traditional guitar.

The band was formed in 2001 and have made 3 albums since. Their talent not only exceeded traditional Japanese music but also attracted people with their original modern arrangement. Their popularity reached new heights during the live EXPO Japan 2005 which captivated the hearts of more than 3,000 people.

Also present was Japanese model Midori Kuzuoka who gave an introduction of the popular fashion that can be found in Japan. Ms Kuzuoka has been modeling for 10 years and also starred in several TV campaigns including Google place, KAO and Asics and is a regular runway member of Tokyo Girls Collection and KOBE Collection.

With regards to this festival, she said, “I would like to support this, and do my part to get Singaporeans to love Japan more”.

There will be many events held in conjunction with the Cool Japan Month and some of the key highlights including the HARAJUKU fashion event, the Japan Travel and Food Fair, a Japan / ASEAN forum on media contents plus many lecture and workshops related to Japanese content.

Members of the public can find out more information about these events that will be happening over at the official website here.

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