Foorin and Foorin team E Energise the World with Debut Performance of Paprika
20.November.2019 | MUSIC
Foorin is a music unit made up of elementary school children with music and lyrics produced entirely by Kenshi Yonezu. Their song Paprika aims to cheer everybody on in the runup to 2020 and beyond. Foorin teamed up with Yonezu’s English native children group Foorin team E for the debut of a 10-children version of Paprika which was performed at ABU TV Song Festival in Tokyo.
Foorin team E was recently formed on November 14 from Yonezu’s intention to expand Paprika’s cheerful message to children all over the world. Together with Foorin, the team of 10 delivered a power-packed performance of Paprika before a sea of broadcasters from Korea, Turkey, Vietnam, India and other asian countries and an audience of 3000 at the ABU TV Song Festival in Tokyo, which sets the stage for artists to represent Japan to the world.
In an interview with Foorin team E before the performance, main vocalist Jasmine stated her excitement for sharing Paprika with people all over the world.
Paprika has already become such a big sensation in Japan that children naturally dance when the song is played. The performance kicked off with the Japanese version of Paprika by Foorin, who were buzzing all over the stage in excitement and singing and dancing energetically. Upon hearing the hook of the song on the word “Paprika”, even the audience joined in on the blooming flower hand motions which are in the dance. The entire performance proved just how popular Paprika has become and how much it is loved all over Japan.
Led by Foorin onto the stage, Foorin team E looked ready. The two groups danced and sung together, performing the English version of Paprika. The dazzling performance was bursting with the fun and uplifting atmosphere of the song. As smiles spread from cheek to cheek onstage, smiles in the audience were also in full bloom, energised by the children’s performance.
As Paprika cheers us on into 2020 and beyond, the day when Paprika becomes a song to which children all over the world happily sing and dance to is getting closer.
Foorin and Foorin team E will also perform for the first time at the 70th NHK Kōhaku Uta Gassen, making this New Year an extra special one for your family.
Photographer: Yusuke Yamatani
NHK Paprika Official Website: https://sports.nhk.or.jp/dream/song/
Doraemon Manga Set Collector’s Edition Features All 45 Volumes to Commemorate 50th Anniversary
31.March.2020 | ANIME&GAME
As part of the ongoing promotions to commemorate 50 years since the Doraemon manga was first published in January 1970, pre-orders for the new “100 Years Doraemon” collector’s edition full manga set Tentōmushi Comics by are now open. And there’s some other exciting collector’s merchandise pieces to go along with it.
What’s “100 Years Doraemon”?
Specially-Selected Coloured ‘Surreal’ Picture Collection
Doraemon was born in the 22nd century, and so this collector’s edition aims to have the famous manga series make it all the way there. To ensure that happens, Fujiko Fujio’s full 45-volume collection will have expertly-crafted and carefully-considered book binding and printing.
Beautiful designs to lead Doraemon across the next 100 years into the 22nd Century
Manga cloth front covers with gold leaf on silk screen prints
All the volumes will have hardback covers, which will feature the series’s first ever cloth front covers. The silk screen printing incorporates gold leaf. The books are also thread-bound to make for more fun page turning. Pages are made from high-quality “Opera Clear Max” paper which ensures the pages do not deteriorate over time. The manga itself features completely remastered prints using the latest technology which are printed with 150 line output as opposed to the common 133 output. All volumes use Tentōmushi Comics’s Doraemon cover illustrations made by book and graphic designer Naoko Nakui.
5 Bonus Items
①Specially-Selected Coloured ‘Surreal’ Picture Collection
An assortment of cuts and illustrations from the Doraemon manga series using original colours from back when the volumes were announced. Also includes previously unreleased illustrations by Fujio F. Fujiko.
A complete index that allows you to look up what volumes characters and Secret Gadgets appear in.
A special Volume 0 will be included featuring 6 variations of the first Doraemon story.
Doraemon & Nobita-kun Figure
This figure captures the scene from Volume 40 of the manga series. The figure was created by MEDICOM TOY.
Giant Time Furoshiki Cloth
This giant 110cm x 110cm furoshiki cloth can wrap the entire three boxes which house the manga set.
100 Years Doraemon Anywhere Door Bookshelf
Store your books on this limited-edition bookshelf which is exclusive to those who purchase the 100 Years Doraemon set. Each shelf stacks 15 volumes to fit the entire collection. It’s inspired by the Anywhere Door, one of Doraemon’s many Secret Gadgets. It was co-developed with furniture maker Karimoku, MEDICOM TOY, and Shogakukan. Sign-ups for this bookshelf will be announced at a later date.
“100 Years Doraemon” 45 Volume Set
Pre-Orders: Opened March 28, 2020
Release Date: December 1, 2020
Price: ¥70,000 (Before Tax)
Binding: Naoko Nakui
Editor: 100 years Doraemon Project Team Shogakukan
*Book and bonus items design subject to change
Official Website: https://www.shogakukan.co.jp/pr/100dora/
Learn About Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture in This Breathtaking 8K PR Video
31.March.2020 | SPOT
A new PR video for Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture was posted on the city’s official YouTube channel on March 2, 2020 as part of Ito City’s digital marketing efforts for 2020, and it’s already garnered over 21 million views in just over two weeks.
The video was directed and editor Yuki Eikawa who has gained much attention across Japan for his touristic PR video work. It captures the most famous sights across Ito including Mount Omuro and Jogasaki Coast, and showcases the city’s food, culture, and incredible natural environments. Check it out below.
ITO City, Shizuoka, Japan in 8K HDR
Learn more about Ito on the city’s official website which has a bounty of useful information for exploring everything Ito has to offer.
YOSHIKI Donates $100,000 to COVID-19 Relief Fund to Help Struggling Music Artists
30.March.2020 | MUSIC
Today, Japanese singer-songwriter, composer, and record producer YOSHIKI donated $100,000 to the COVID-19 Relief Fund through YOSHIKI FOUNDATION AMERICA, a non-profit public interest company managed by the artist himself.
The COVID-19 Relief Fund was created by The Recording Academy® and MusiCares© to help support struggling music artists who are having to postpone and cancel tours in response to the pandemic outbreak. YOSHIKI is a board member of The Recording Academy®, which is known for presenting the Grammy Awards.
YOSHIKI said: “In a time when we are being told to conduct self-control and restraint, I’m still called out by people on whether it’s best to put shows on holdーfor the benefit of fans included. The financial damage of that is of course substantial. Many different industriesーnot just the entertainment industryーare on the verge of danger, as are people of varying positions [across society]. As someone in the world of music, I would hope there would be some way of offering help to those involved in the music industry around the world, Japan included, during this difficult time, and so I have donated to the COVID-19 Relief Fund. The danger of COVID-19 is a global problem, not just Japan. I pray from the bottom of my heart that this will all be over much quicker by everyone cooperating to conduct self-restraint and wait this out to lessen the spread of the virus, and that the entertainment industry can once again return to its thriving self.”
Steve Boom, Chairman of the Board at MusiCares, also expressed his deep gratitude to the donations which go towards relieving the burden of musicians and those involved in music. He said that everyone’s cooperation will ensure that the necessary funds and resources are there for people to continue their careers.
YOSHIKI continues to post information related to the coronavirus via his social media pages. On March 11, he interviewed Shinya Yamanaka, the director of the Center for iPS Cell Research and winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The interview can be seen below and has English subtitles.
YOSHIKI Official Website: http://www.yoshiki.net/
AmPm to Perform Fruits Basket Anime’s Season Two Opening Theme ‘Prism’ feat. Miyuna
Since dropping their debut track Best Part Of Us feat. Michael Kaneko in March 2017ーwhich has over 33 million plays on Spotifyーmasked music duo have garnered fans in worldwide. And it’s now been revealed that they will perform the opening theme song for the upcoming second season of the TV anime series Fruits Basket.
The song is entitled Prism and features Miyuna on vocals. Miyuna is a 17-year-old Japanese singer who gained fans across Japan last year for her incredible singing talent. This will also be AmPm’s first song sung entirely in Japanese. The track will be released on April 8, 2020.
Fruits Basket was serialised in Hana to Yume, published by Hakusensha, from 1998 to 2006. The entire 23-volume series has sold over 30 million copies worldwide. The original 26-episode anime adaptation by Studio Deen ran in 2001 from July to December. A new series with new cast and staff began aired from April to September last year. Its long-awaited second season will return next month on April 6. The season two ending theme ad meliora will be performed by THE CHARM PARK.
Hear both Prism and ad meliora tie together the highly anticipated second season of Fruits Basket when it airs on April 6.
©Natsuki Takaya・Hakusensha/Fruits Basket Production Committee
AmPm – “Prism feat. Miyuna”
Release Date: April 8, 2020
©℗ A.S.A.B / PLAY RECORDS
Stream AmPm: https://ampm.lnk.to/ampm
Fruits Basket – Season 2
Initial Broadcast: April 6, 2020
2nd season Opening Theme: “Prism” by AmPm feat. Miyuna
2nd season Ending Theme: “ad meliora” by THE CHARM PARK
Fruits Basket Official Website: https://fruba.jp/
New Japanese KitKat Commercial Sees Shingo Katori Show Off His Art Skills
30.March.2020 | FOOD
Shingo Katori is an official ambassador of KitKat Japan, and he appeared in the latest television commercial for the chocolate brand which began broadcasting on March 27. The commercial was also posted on the KitKat Japan website.
Japan has the biggest KitKat market in the world. In September 2019, in an effort to reduce the amount of plastic waste, Nestlé made the decision to alter the packaging of five types of its large size KitKat chocolate bars from plastic to paper. The paper can then be used to make paper cranesーa symbol of hopes and prayers in traditional Japanese cultureーor for writing messages on to give to people.
In KitKat’s latest commercial, Shingo Katori comes together with young people to create an art piece from the paper packaging which reads, “Let’s all work hard together!” in Japanese.
Official Website: https://nestle.jp/brand/kit/
Vogue Japan, fragment design, & THE CONVENI to Release T-Shirts and Hoodies in Triple Collaboration
29.March.2020 | FASHION
Vogue Japanーthe Japanese edition of the world’s most influential fashion magazine Vogueーhas teamed up with Hiroshi Fujiwara-led brand fragment design and his concept store THE CONVENI to create two T-shirts and hoodies. This is the first time Vogue Japan has collaborated to release an item with its logo branding.
VOGUE MAGAZINE TEE: ¥8,500 (Before Tax) / COLOR: BLACK, WHITE / SIZE: S, M, L, XL
This is Vogue Japan’s first ever triple-collaboration and celebrates the 20th anniversary since it launched. THE CONVENI is known for its creative packaging, which has spilled into this collaboration too with the hoodie being packaged in a cereal box and the t-shirt in a milk carton.
VOGUE MAGAZINE HOODIE: ¥18,000 (Before Tax) / COLOR: BLACK, WHITE / SIZE: S, M, L, XL
Both the T-shirts and hoodies are available in black or white. The front reads “VOGUE JAPAN,” the back features the 20th anniversary logo, and the sleeves read “FRAGMENT.” The release dates for the items will be announced on THE CONVENI’s social media, so follow them on Instagram to keep up to date.
VOGUE MAGAZINE TEE / VOGUE MAGAZINE HOODIE
Buy At: THE CONVENI (GINZA SONY PARK) / B1, 5-3-1 Ginza, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Cute Pompompurin Puddings to be Released in Collaboration With Pastel
Desserts brand Pastel is collaborating with popular Sanrio character Pompompurin to release a selection of puddings at Pastel stores around Japan for the whole month of April.
Pastel prides itself on the smooth texture of its purinーa type of Japanese custard pudding. The company will celebrate Pompompurin’s birthday, which falls on April 16, with a line of 4 adorable Pompompurin desserts.
Pompompurin’s Mini Pudding – ¥380 (Before Tax)
The classic style of Japanese custard pudding, smooth and topped with whipped cream. It’s finished with a cute sprinkled design of Pompompurin.
Soft and Fluffy Pompompurin – ¥450 (Before Tax)
Pompompurin is looking cute in this one as he pokes his head out of the caramel-drizzled and marshmallow-topped pudding.
Pompompurin’s À La Mode – ¥600 (Before Tax)
Served in an original design cup branded with Pompompurin’s adorable face, this à la mode includes a pudding topped with an orange slice and cherry.
Pompompurin’s Chiffon – ¥2,200 (Before Tax)
This fluffy chiffon cake is about 15 meters across in size, and is made with pudding cream, glazed in caramel sauce, and topped with a Pompompurin who’s just taking a little rest. *Available on weekends only
Shopper Bag Design (Available while supplies last)
When you order any of these desserts, you’ll receive an exclusive Pastel x Pompompurin collaborative bag which makes for a great gift or souvenir to friends.
Don’t miss out on these tasty Pompompurin treats.
Pastel x Pompompurin Collaboration
Running: April 1, 2020 – April 30, 2020
Location: Pastel stores in Japan
Pastel Official Website: http://pastel-pudding.com
See 3,000 Rhododendrons in Full Bloom at the Tsutsuji Garden by Lake Ashi in Hakone
29.March.2020 | SPOT
May is the most colourful time of the year at Hotel de Yama near Lake Ashi in Hakone, when a total of 3,000 rhododendronsーcomprised of 30 different typesーbloom their beautiful flowers in the large Tsutsuji Garden, where one can enjoy a great view of Mount Fuji and Lake Ashi.
Tsutsuji Garden at Hotel de Yama
“Tsutsuji” is the Japanese word for rhododendron. The Tsutsuji Garden at Hotel de Yama was once the villa of Koyata Iwasaki, “the fourth and last president of a unified Mitsubishi.” During that time, numerous varieties of rhododendrons were planted in the garden, which have since been maintained. There are plants amongst them that are over 100-years-old, ones that tower over the human stature, and more; with petals that bloom pink, red, purple, and white.
A combined view of the kaleidoscopic rhododendrons and Mount Fuji
The staff who are experts on the garden have set up two photo frame stands in two of the best spots in the garden for taking picturesque photos. Snap some Instagrammable and memories with the colourful rhododendrons and Mount Fuji together.
Rhododendron Desserts: Saison a colorier – ¥1,634 / Tea Set – ¥2,360 (Before Tax)
Salon de thé Rosage, the dessert restaurant that sits in front of the hotel, is serving up a new special dessert called “Saison a colorier” in line with the full bloom of the rhododendrons. It captures the colourful pink, red, white, and purple appearance of the flowers, and looks like a mini version of the hotel’s garden on your plate. The main part of the dessert is the tea mousse, which has a bright red colour as it is coated beautifully in a strawberry puree nappage. The tea used in the mouse is an original rhododendron blend exclusive to the restaurant.
The white rhododendron dessert is a macaron that’s filled with raspberry sorbet. The red which contrasts with the white is a rhododendron milk tea cream and fresh raspberries. The rest of the plate is adorned with pink jelly and edible flowers. The perfect afternoon tea to finish off your time at Tsutsuji Garden.
Hotel de Yama / Salon de thé Rosage
Address: 80 Motohakone, Hakone, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa
Official Website: https://www.hakone-hoteldeyama.jp/en/
Grab These Adorable and Delicious-Looking Kirby Figures at Japan’s Game Centres
29.March.2020 | ANIME&GAME
The second batch in a series of Kirby figurines, based on the Kirby’s Dream Land game series, began rolling out at game centres across Japan on March 26, 2020. They are part of the “Palcolce collection,” a line of palm-sized figures themed around desserts.
Three figures make up the second batch of the series, which includes Kirby standing atop a Star Block shortcake holding a bright-red strawberry, another of Waddle Dee climbing a cupcake on chocolate ladder, and Kirby flying through the sky on a cheesecake Warp Star.
A third batch is also planned drop in the near future.
Collect all three from arcades throughout Japan to create a truly kawaii Kirby scene!
©Nintendo / HAL Laboratory, Inc. KB19-3661
Kirby – Paldolce collection vol.2
Release Date: Rolling out March 26, 2020
Available: Amusement centres throughout Japan (*select branches not participating)
Official Website: https://bpnavi.jp/s/toru/pc/prizes/81933
Coronavirus in Japan: Kaname Inn Tatemachi in Kanazawa Offers Free Accommodation to Foreigners Who Can’t Get Home
29.March.2020 | SPOT
Kaname Inn Tatemachi, a hotel in Kanazawa, Ishikawa, has announced a project named “Room for rescue” which will offer free accommodation to foreigners unable to travel back to their home countries from Japan due to lockdowns and restrictions from going outside as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic
With flights cancelled around the world, there is no way for foreigners to return home from Japan, resulting in them being forced to change their plans and extend their stay. They are living their days in constant worry, both financially and mentally. To ensure that foreign travellers don’t feel like their trip to Japan was a bad experience, free accommodation is becoming available to those who meet certain prescribed conditions.
In response to the decreasing number of tourists, Kaname Inn Tatemachi opened its doors to Japanese citizens through Facebook for free accommodation to help support businesses like local restaurants that could no longer make a living. They received a lot of guests, as well as a request from a friend who asked if someone from the Netherlands could stay there because they couldn’t get back to their country. This sparked the “Room for rescue” project for stranded foreign tourists to stay at Kaname Inn Tatemachi for free too.
Kaname Inn Tatemachi is using its own funds to pay for the project and allow free stay. However, doing this long term will put strain on the business, so to help pay for hotel use and staff’s wages, the hotel has opened up a crowd funding page which you can find here.
Room for rescue
Aimed at: Foreign travellers who cannot return home
How to Apply
Send the following details to the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org
①Write “Room 4 Rescue” as the subject of your e-mail
②Include which country you are from
③Write the names of all the people who wish to stay at the hotel
④Write the number of adults
⑤Write the number of children
⑥Write your check-in time and date
⑦Write your check-out time and date
⑧Attach a screenshot or photo of your cancelled flight details
Application Deadline: March 28, 2020 at 23:59 (JST)
Free Accommodation Stay Time: Until April 15, 2020
My Neighbor Totoro Mother’s Day Gift Set is Inspired by the Corn Mei Gives to Her Mother
The My Neighbor Totoro corn gift set is a hugely popular item sold in Japan for Mother’s Day. It will be released again this April at Donguri Kyowakoku stores across Japan and on the Sora no Ue online shop.
Studio Ghibli’s films never fail to warm the hearts of viewers. One of these feelsy moments is seen in the movie My Neighbor Totoro when Mei picks corn for her mother and treks her way to the hospital to give it to her. This gift set is inspired by that corn inside which is wrapped a lunch bag and handkerchief with illustrations of a lively Totoro and fresh vegetables.
My Neighbor Totoro 2020 Corn Gift Set – ¥2,727 (Before Tax)
The corn set is the same size as a real corn, and is sure to bring a smile to your mother’s face. If she’s yet to see the film, you’ll have to try convincing her to watch it. Pre-orders for the gift are now open.
Kiki’s Delivery Service UV Protection 33 – ¥2,300 (Before Tax)
Whisper of the Heart UV Protection 33 – ¥2,300 (Before Tax)
Protect yourself from UV rays with these new protection creams based on the Studio Ghibli films Kiki’s Delivery Service and Whisper of the Heart. The cream is made with organic plant based ingredients, and it can be used all over your body, whether for your morning and nighttime skin care routines or body when you get out the bath. The cream spreads across the skin easily and so is a recommended base for your make-up too. This is a great gift to get together with the corn set.
Treat mom to a special present this year by heading over to Donguri Kyowakoku.
Harajuku’s Rilakkuma Fruits Cafe Entertains Customers With Projection Mapping
“HARAJUKU AR BOX -table projection mapping cafe-,” a cafe in Harajuku whose name speaks for itself, has announced its second collaboration with Rilakkuma to bring the new Rilakkuma Fruits Cafe which will open for a limited time from April 3, 2020 to June 28, 2020.
The cafe’s first collaboration with Rilakkuma was in December last year. It was called “Korilakkuma Cafe: another me in the mirror” and earned itself many fans for its cute food and decor, but especially for its interactive tables which used projection mapping technology to have Rilakkuma and friends running around people’s tables.
Harajuku’s Korilakkuma Cafe: another me in the mirror | Food Review: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/284456
Fruit is the theme of the new Rilakkuma Fruits Cafe, which follows that Chairoikoguma and the other characters have gathered lots of nutritious fruit to fill up the belly of hungry Rilakkuma.
Rilakkuma’s Fruit Salad – ¥1,590
Get your fill of refreshing fruit from this fruit salad plate which has Rilakkuma poking his cute face out from behind it all. When you order this dish, you’ll need to touch the fruits that appear on the table to give them to Rilakkuma.
Korilakkuma’s Apple Cheese Gratin – ¥1,690
A combination of hot apple and melted cheese, you’ll find yourself addicted to the sweet and sour mix of flavours. Pick lots of apples with Rilakkuma and company with the projection mapping game. (*Serving April 3, 2020 – May 17, 2020 only)
Chairoikoguma’s Orange Burger – ¥1,690
The bun of this hearty burger is branded with Chairokoguma’s cute bear face. But what happens when you squeeze Rilakkuma’s orange? (*Serving May 20, 2020 – June 28, 2020 only)
Rilakkuma’s Maku Maku Fruit Tree Parfait – ¥1,590
Korilakkuma’s Maku Maku Strawberry Tree Parfait – ¥1,590 (Serving April 3, 2020 – May 17, 2020 only)
Kiiroitori’s Maku Maku Peach Tree Parfait – ¥1,590 (Serving May 20, 2020 – June 28, 2020 only)
For dessert, you have a selection of fruit-topped parfaits to choose from featuring Rilakkuma, Korilakkuma, and Kiiroitori.
Rilakkuma & Friends Maku Maku Drinks – ¥790 / With Glass – ¥1,990
Warm & Fluffy With Everyone Cafe Latte – ¥890
Pick between one of the cold beverages, or if it’s a cold day, warm up with a hot drink. Feel warm and fluffy like Rilakkuma and his friends with a warm beverage after your parfait.
Exclusive Merchandise & Bonus Items
Pin Badges (9 Designs/Chosen Randomly) – ¥400
Acrylic Key Rings (8 Designs/Chosen Randomly) – ¥500
Get your hands on a selection of original merchandise too, including pin badges, acrylic key rings, and more.
Stickers (4 Designs/Chosen Randomly)
Coasters (4 Designs/Chosen Randomly)
Book a table online in advance and receive one of four possible stickers. Order a drink at the cafe and get one of the four coasters!
You’re sure to get your five-a-day when you dine at the Rilakkuma Fruits Cafe, opening for spring on April 3, 2020 in Harajuku.
©2020San-X Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Rilakkuma Fruits Cafe
Running: April 3, 2020 – June 28, 2020
Location: HARAJUKU AR BOX-table projection mapping cafe- (Lucessimo Bldg. Floor 2F, 4-28-28 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo)
Table Bookings: Now Open
*Table Projection Mapping seats for two people are ¥2,960 (before Tax)
Official Website: https://rilakkuma-fruits-cafe.jp/