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Cultural events lined up for PHL-Japan friendship month

A series of cultural events have been lined up this July to mark 55 years of "long-standing warm friendship and cooperation" between the Philippines and Japan. The Japanese Embassy said it has partnered with Japan Foundation Manila and other groups in organizing the events for Philippines-Japan Friendship Month. "(The Philippines-Japan Friendship Month) is celebrated in the month of July to commemorate the designation of July 23 as Philippines-Japan Friendship Day in the Golden Jubilee Celebration of the diplomatic relationship between the two countries in 2006," it said. The events will showcase the best of Japanese cinema, energetic J-Music (Japanese music) performances by budding Filipino performers and musicians, the icons of Japanese anime and manga, contemporary Japanese music, and traditional Japanese festival. The events include:
  • Japanese Film Festival 2011–Eiga Sai 2011 Manila: At the Shangri-La Cinema 4, Mandaluyong City from July 1 to 10; Davao: Gaisano Grand Citimall from July 22 to 24; Cebu: Ayala Center Cebu Cinema 4 August 2 to 7; UP Film Institute: August 17 to 20. The Embassy said 12 handpicked contemporary silver screen gems from respected Japanese filmmakers will be screened in this year's "Eiga Sai." "This year's Eiga Sai films will make the viewers laugh and cry, pull at the audiences' heartstrings and give them hours of cinema entertainment. Admission is open to the public and free of charge," it said.
  • Akio and Kuniko Concert at the RCBC Plaza, Makati City, on July 20 at 7:30 p.m.
  • 2011 J-Pop Anime Singing Contest at the SM Megamall Events Center on July 23, Philippines-Japan Friendship Day), from 1 to 4 p.m. "The audience will also be entertained with other activities such as the anime-making demonstration by Toei Animation Philippines, musical performance by the Embassy of Japan's own music band, the 'No Plan Band,' meet and greet Doraemon (Japan's anime ambassador), Doraemon photowall, and have their photos taken with colorfully-garbed cosplayers," the embassy said. It added the winning entries of the Torara (mascot of the J-Pop Anime Singing Contest) Manga Making Contest will also be displayed in the event area for the audience to read and enjoy. After the J-Pop Anime Singing Contest Grand Finale, there will be free screening of a Japanese animation film in an SM Megamall Cinema.
  • Baguio Cultural Exchange Programs at the Benguet State University June 27 and July 2; University of Baguio June 30 to July 1; Saint Louis University July 4 to 5; University of Cordilleras July 11 to 12; University of the Philippines Baguio July 14 to 15; and Baguio Museum July 18, 20, 22, 25 & 27.
  • Over the Milky Way – Tanabata Matsuri (Bamboo/Star Festival) at the Baguio City Museum July 8 to 30. "Baguio City residents and residents of nearby provinces can visit the Baguio City Museum to write their wishes on a piece of paper, and hang them on a specially erected bamboo tree in the hope that the wishes come true," the Embassy said. Also, an exhibit of Japanese cultural heritage and Japanese natural scenery captured by the lenses of renowned Filipino photographer Kidlat de Guia and Japanese photographer Yasuhiko Naoi will also take place.
  • Japan Kingdom of Characters at Tall Galeries, Metropolitan Museum of Manila, from July 7 to August 20, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday to Saturday. "The Filipino's love affair with anime and manga characters goes a long way. From Astroboy in the ‘50s to Ultraman in the ‘60s or Mask Rider Black, Hello Kitty and Mazinger Z in the ‘70s, Doraemon and Gundam in the ‘80s, Evangelion in the ‘90s and the adorable Pokemon in the 2000s, Filipinos from the baby boomer generation to generation Y are endeared to Japanese anime and manga in the same way they are endeared to truly Filipino things like Manny Pacquiao and halo-halo," the Embassy said. - VVP, GMA News
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