From what I can recall, this is an annual “festival”. This year it spanned over 3 days in which I attended on day 2. Day 1 was basically a conference+talk held at some hotel, which was intended for aspiring mangakas or people who are in the publishing industry – no reason for me to attend. Day’s 2 & 3 (16th 17th Feb) were identical with a slight difference in which I will go into more detail below.
The first person recount:
Alright, I don’t really know if this can be counted as a “festival”, since it was more of a exhibition than anything else, but hey there was an article about it on a local newspaper, so it must be kinda recognized by the mainstream media at least. Moreover the exhibition was held at The Arts House, a former parliament house turned into an arts and heritage venue.
This time I had the honour of not being alone, as I was accompanied by a friend of mine – so shout-outs to him. Frankly, I had no idea what to expect there, nor was I even aware about the fact that it was held annually, so I was slightly surprised at what I saw. Upon entering the exhibition area, we were greeted by an Engrish survey, and some free
Apparently the event was held to raise awareness about online piracy and stuff like that. I’m not going to go into what I think about piracy because it deserves a post on its own and it’s dangerous waters we’re treading upon here. Still, I’m amazed that I can recognize several titles, some of which are actually very recent/current as I was expecting old or obscure titles that no-one knows about.
Essentially, here wasn’t much to see or do, so after taking pictures of just about everything. We left for part 2. The other thing happening on Day 2 was an appearance + signing session by several famed mangakas (although I’m sorry to say in my ignorance I haven’t heard of them before), and more importantly the president of Crypton Future Media, Ito Hiroyuki. Who? Basically the company that produced Hatsune Miku, a vocaloid software, making him Miku’s “father” so to speak. Of course there was also Danny Choo alongside him, who never fails to grasp every opportunity to market himself and his brand.
The venue was at another place (Kinokuniya @ Takashimaya) and it was packed. I’m not sure who the people are really here for, as I’m here as an “observer” and nothing more. After hearing Mr President give his speech, marred by technical difficulties, I left just as the signing session started. Strictly speaking, there was no real need for me to attend the whole thing but I told myself: “It is better to be here than to spend yet another day at home isn’t it?”