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Event: Japan Matsuri 2014 London Trafalgar Square

The spectacular annual Japan festival returns for more fun and excitement!

Japan Matsuri 2014 logoDate: Saturday, 27th September 2014

Location: Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN

Time: 11 am – 9 pm

The Japan Matsuri, now in its sixth year, is a dynamic annual event that brings the Japanese community and Londoners together to enjoy an amazing day of Japanese culture, food, live music, martial arts, dance, arts, crafts and much more. There is a strong family focus with lots of free activities for children. It’s the largest annual gathering of Japanese people in the UK and a great family day for all Londoners.

Here’s what you and your family can expect:

Family Activities

Japan Matsuri 2014 offers a fantastic family fun day with an amazing array of traditional Japanese games, chances to learn the secrets of Origami or become a manga artist and display your masterpiece in front of the National Gallery. All this along with stunting live visual displays blending the best of modern and traditional Japan. Throughout the day, there will be an opportunity to play Japan’s three most loved and popular festival games; there’ll also be origami and manga art workshops. There will be a fabulous opportunity for all the family to display their artwork skills in front of the National Gallery on the amazing Manga Wall. During the afternoon see a range of exquisite visual displays combining traditional Japanese costumes and fabrics with live models in original artworks inspired by the National Gallery collection and St Martin-in-the-fields.  To add to the amazing festive fun Japan’s top five most lovable mascots will be making regular appearances to charm the hearts of young and old alike.

Stalls – Washoku

Mouth-watering traditional Japanese  cuisine  – “wa-shoku”  – is one of Japan Matsuri 2014’s main themes. To celebrate this, we will offer visitors an absolutely fantastic range of amazing food stalls selling all manner of delicious Japanese food. From beautifully crafted sushi selections to delicate and crispy tempura, you’ll find it at Japan Matsuri 2014. Traditional Japanese cuisine, has been widely lauded around the world. In December 2013, it was granted the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage designation. There a lot of Japanese stalls people can taste popular Japanese foods! Washoku is a social practice based on a set of skills, knowledge, practice and traditions related to the production, processing, preparation and consumption of food. It is associated with an essential spirit of respect for nature that is closely related to the sustainable use of natural resources. The basic knowledge and the social and cultural characteristics associated with Washoku are typically seen during New Year celebrations. The Japanese make various preparations to welcome the deities of the incoming year, pounding rice cakes and preparing special meals and beautifully decorated dishes using fresh ingredients, each of which has a symbolic meaning. These dishes are served on special tableware and shared by family members or collectively among communities. The practice favours the consumption of various natural, locally sourced ingredients such as rice, fish, vegetables and edible wild plants. The basic knowledge and skills related to Washoku, such as the proper seasoning of home cooking, are passed down in the home at shared mealtimes. Grassroots groups, schoolteachers and cooking instructors also play a role in transmitting the knowledge and skills by means of formal and non-formal education or through practice.

https://en.cookpad.com/what-is-washoku http://www.unesco.org/culture/ich/RL/00869

Radio Taiso – it’s back!! Let’s exercise together!!

Radio Taiso

Radio Taiso

Radio Taiso ( Radio exercise) appeared on Japan Matsuri 2012. They had big attentions from the audiences. The performers come from the exercise NHK TV show in Japan. Radio exercise is a popular activity in Japan, where schools and offices exercise for 3 minutes every morning to energise their students and workforces. The presenters of this TV show will be appearing at Japan Matsuri to put the attendees through their paces!


Yurukyara® Mascot Show with Naomi Suzuki

Yurukyara® Mascot Show with Naomi Suzuki

Yurukyara® Mascot Show with Naomi Suzuki

Lately there has been a growing trend in Japan for “Yurukyara” (laid –back characters), cute mascots to aid in the PR of major towns and cities. This year’s Japan Matsuri, the biggest Japanese culture event in the UK, will host the most popular Yurukyara mascots, as voted by the citizens of Japan. They are SANOMARU, KUMAMON, GUNMA-CHAN, IEYASU KUN and TAGATAN. KUMAMON is the star  Mascot. SANOMARU was No1, and GUNMA-CHAN and IEYASU KUN were top finalists of “Yurukyara Grand Prix” 2013 which is the most famous cute mascot competition in Japan. TAGATAN did not win the competition but TAGATAN works hard to spread the word about this gem of the UNESCO Memory of the World register. TAGATAN is looking forward to meeting Naomi Suzuki, MC for the show who is an ambassador of TAGATAN. We hope we can introduce this new and exciting part of Japanese culture to the UK together with venue in London. We believe that this event will not only be beneficial to the Japanese local governments, but also help to strengthen the ties between Japan and the UK.

SANOMARU – SANOMARU (‘maru’ means circle) won “Yurukyara Grand Prix 2013” among 1580 mascots that entered the competition. SANOMARU is a Samurai (warrior) who wears a hat which is Sano Ramen bowl shape with potato fries swords on his waist, and lives in a town around a castle.

KUMAMON – No1 position in “Yurukyara Grand Prix” 2011 – KUMAMON was created in March 2011 to coincide with the opening of the Kyushu bullet train. His work is to discover surprises and happiness in Kumamoto and share them with people all over Japan.

Daimyo of Success, IEYASU KUN – No2 position in “Yurukyara Grand Prix” 2013 – IEYASU KUN is a motif of Tokugawa Ieyasu, who spent some of his most productive years in Hamamatsu, between the ages of 29 and 45 (1570­­­­–1586), before succeeding in unifying the whole of Japan.

GUNMA-CHAN – No3 Position in “Yurukyara Grand Prix” 2012 & 2013 – GUNMA-CHAN was created in 1994 as the mascot for the National Sports Competition for Intellectual Disabilities, Yuai pics Gunma. GUNMA-CHAN has been around for 20 years and is still very much loved today.

TAGATAN – The town of Tagawa, Fukuoka Prefecture, boasts the collective works of Sakuhei Yamamoto, the first UNESCO Memory of the World item to be recognised from Japan.






Joji Hirota – Composer, Japanese Taiko Drummer, Multi-Percussionist, Shakuhachi player and Singer

Joji’s prolific career spans over 30 years and 16 albums, sculpting dynamic landscapes of rhythm and haunting melodies with the themes of nature and the beauty in every day life. Since receiving a commendation from the UK Japanese Embassy from Ambassador Orita in 2003 for his contribution to Japanese culture overseas through his musical activities, he has continued to work on a vast number of diverse projects, and with his recent ‘Beyond The Requiem’ charity concert tours with the London Metropolitan Orchestra in the UK and Japan, has strived to make a difference by supporting the people affected by the Earthquake disaster of 2011 through music.


The Super J Culture Fashion Performance

This haunting performance is a fusion of Japanese tradition and Western style. Fashion models will grace the catwalk in front of a backdrop of the 4 Japanese seasons. These 4 Japanese-themed worlds will showcase a collaboration of beautiful and nouvelle music, kimono co-ordination, and dynamic dance & kung fu performance. With the addition of traditional Japanese instruments such as the shamisen and taiko drums, the stage will be transformed into a fantastical never-before-seen spectacle. Music Producer and Violinist, Ryoma, is a highly reputable and talented up-and-coming artist. Vocalist Naomi Suzuki (AJ Unity) is the most well known Japanese vocalist in the UK, whose oriental voice is often described as surprisingly beautiful. Joji Hirota is the best taiko drummer in the UK. Our designers are currently in charge of costuming in a variety of Hollywood movies, British dramas, and commercials as well as famous fashion magazine Vogue. David Cheung is an amazing professional stunt actor who has worked on various feature productions including Skyfall and 47 Ronin. He is also a martial arts specialist and performs at various shows. An on-stage collaboration of flickering torchlights, intense ninja dance, music, and beautiful kimono-inspired fashion will transport spectators.




…And much much, more!

Click here for location and transport details.

Regularly check Japan Matsuri’s official website for updates and full progamme details!

Japan Matsuri is organized by Japan Matsuri Ltd., comprising the Japan Association in the UK, the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the UK, the Japan Society and the Nippon Club, and supported by the Embassy of Japan.

Related Posts:

Event Report: Japan Matsuri 2012 At Trafalgar Square London

Japan Matsuri 2012 Trafalgar Square London

The Japan Matsuri 2011 Is Coming To London!


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