Japan cultural shows make inroads in Saudi Arabia

March 04, 2019

Irfan Mohammed

Saudi Gazette

The Japanese culture has been drawing attention in Saudi Arabia with more people, including young women, keen to know the rich Japanese culture and lifestyle. Japanese story telling and anime characters sale become popular in Jeddah where Nippon Sayko is making inroads.

Further films were exhibited by Japanese Consulate providing an opportunity for people in Jeddah to know more about Japan youth life.

Japan Consulate, in collaboration with Japan Foundation and film distributor company, exhibited the “Swing Girls” movie here at residence of consul general recently that was attended by members of different walks of society and notable among them were many young Saudi students.

Consul General Masayuki Miyamoto said that Japan movies are one of the success stories in Jeddah as it draws good crowd whenever the consulate conducts a film show.

“Swing Girls” is directed by Shinobu Yaguchi, which is made on a real story based on Tateshina High School Jazz Club in northeast of Japan. This is one of the popular movies of Japan in recent times and is about Japanese schoolgirls, where a group of scheming Japanese schoolgirls attempt to get out of summer math class by delivering bento boxes to the school’s brass band, in the process contaminating the meals and forming a stand-in band with the one real musicians who hasn’t fallen ill.

“A group of struggling female math students are in class when daydreaming Tomoko (Juri Ueno) peers out the window and sees the brass band loading into a bus to perform at a local baseball game. Shortly after their bus pulls away, a catering truck carrying the band’s bento boxes arrives to discover that the band has left without their meals.”

Japan is invigorating cultural exchanges with Saudi Arabia with the recognition that promotion of culture gains being one of main pillars of Saudi Vision 2030. In 2017, Japan Embassy and Saudi Ministry of Culture and Information invited an orchestra composed of 80 young players from Japan as a part of Japan Week events.

The performance of classical music by full-fledged orchestra is one of popular event in Kingdom, where more than 3,000 Saudis thronged the event. In addition, exchanges in sports have shown remarkable progress. With the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics Games in sight, Japan diplomatic missions are putting forward elite athlete exchange programs of judo and karate, with the expectation that more Saudi athletes would compete in the most prestigious stage.

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