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Community College of City University students visited Fukuoka from Hong Kong to experience Japanese pop culture firsthand!

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A fantastic pop culture experience!

Community College of City University students visited Fukuoka from Hong Kong in July to participate in a two-day summer study tour. The program, which gave the students the chance to experience Japanese pop culture, ran from Friday 21st July to Saturday 22nd July 2017, and saw them take in a lecture about cosplay!

Community College of City University 香港城市大学専上学院 コスプレ講義Here is Takahiro Shobu (to the right of the photograph) with the students from the Community College of City University)

On Friday 21st July, Takahiro Shobu the owner of the cosplay costume and prop store "Henshin Zakka Shop Parfait" gave a lecture titled the "History of Cosplay" to all the participants. The students were enthused by long term cosplay fan Mr. Shoubu's easy-to-understand talk, which discussed the changes that have occurred over the years in cosplay styles and photography techniques.

Community College of City University 香港城市大学専上学院 コスプレ講義
Community College of City University 香港城市大学専上学院 コスプレ講義
The audience were clearly impressed by what they heard and gave some feedback. One student said that "Apparently there has been an increase in the number of people getting into cosplay in Hong Kong. I heard about a lot of things for the first time. I found it very interesting." Another commented that "In Hong Kong, men usually cosplay as male characters, and women as female characters. But in Japan cosplayers do not seem to limit themselves to dressing as one gender. It is a really fresh approach."

After the lecture finished, the group moved to "Henshin Zakka Shop Parfait" to take a look around the store. At first, the sheer volume of stock can mean that it is a bit overwhelming and tricky to know where to start, but once the students picked up a few items they were surprised by the reasonable prices. Some of them had expected the outfits in Japan to be expensive, so had a great time searching for bargains.

変身雑貨ショップぱるふぇ Henshin Zakka Shop Parfait
変身雑貨ショップぱるふぇ Henshin Zakka Shop Parfait
On Saturday 22nd July 2017, the party went to Kitakyushu. During the day they visited "Aruaru Cty," the "Kitakyushu Manga Museum," and the "Aruaru City Hologram Theater." The "Manga Time Tunnel" section in the "Kitakyushu Manga Museum" arranges manga by age. While exploring the 1980s display, the group was excited to discover some titles that they had seen in Hong Kong.

Kitakyushu Manga Museum 北九州市漫画ミュージアム
Kitakyushu Manga Museum 北九州市漫画ミュージアム
After the tour was over, the students got to spend some time to themselves, indulge in a spot of shopping, and attend a voice artist event. They also got to hang out and enjoy Aruaru City, which is packed full of Japanese pop culture!

We hope that all the participants have developed a fondness for Japan through this pop culture-based experience. It would be great to see them all again in Fukuoka some time soon! (Editorial Dept.: Nene & MPO-KUN)

小倉城 Kokura Castle
Here is the group after a walk around Kokura Castle, one of the symbols of Kitakyushu!

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