This year’s Hyper Japan Christmas took place during 27-29th November over at the usual venue of Tobacco Dock in East London. Since we attended on the Friday, it was less busy than the other days. On the ground floor the venue was divided into glass rooms and there were smaller stalls inside selling a variety of items, from weapons to fluffy alpaca plushies. The bottom floor was mostly made up of food stands and entertainment such as retro gaming.
We went to a few events; a travel seminar hosted by &TOKYO, a talk by Production I.G., and performances by LADY BABY and Hatsune Miku. The travel seminar covered tourism in Japan especially inside Tokyo, and news about the collaboration between British Airlines, Japan Airlines and Finnair so passengers can check in from any of the companies’ website. This is also great for frequent flyers to collect points.
Both the Animation Director Shiotani Naoyoshi and Animation Producer Kuroki Rui were present for the Production I.G. talk but to avoid repetition with Saturday’s session, Friday’s questions were centered around Shiotani. They started with a video tour of the I.G. office, along the talk there were interesting stories such as how Shiotani got into animation (he’d always enjoyed films and drawing), how he’s skilled at directing realistic scenes (I.G. has lots of replica guns, becoming friends with a martial artist), and thoughts into why Psycho-Pass has been so successful.
LADY BABY’s performance covered all of their songs, including their upcoming single Age Age Money ~Ochingin Daisakusen~. The crowd was incredibly enthusiastic and the group got everyone dancing during the encore performance of Nippon Manju. The Hatsune Miku performance was organised by the fangroup Mirai no Neiro which made their debut in London during last year’s Hyper Japan Christmas Market.
Overall, Hyper Japan Christmas Market has something for everyone with many activities and Christmas presents to choose from. We were given leaflets during our departure with the announcement that the next Hyper Japan Festival will be taking place back in Olympia during 15-17th July 2016, so stayed tuned for more news!