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Roboter-Performance, Origami, Lecture: The Mangas by CLAMP, Shiatsu Massage only some of this afternoons events. Hard to choose where to go? Also on the schedule was the lecture by Haruhiko Arai “Another Auteur -Theorie – Japanese films don’t only exist of directors!”.

Haruhiko ARAI is one of the most prominent scriptwriters in Japan as well as publisher of the important film magazine Eiga Geijutsu and several books. In his speech he argued against the director-centered perspective that Japanese film has been limited to, and gave glimpses of the whole world of masters and filmic creativity that has been blocked from view by it.

In the evening it was party time again! After a bowl of Soba at the SobaYa Lounge japanese punk rock band “Mika Bomb” from the UK rocked the festival cafe. Mika Bomb played a mixture between New York Punk, Garage Rock, Motown and Japanese Punk- Rock with some Ramones thrown in. The four Japanese girls are traded as the absolute insider tip in London, where they are currently living.

But after Mika Bombs performance the party wasn’t over at all – now it was the turn of famous Frankfurt based DJ Team “Les Yper Sound” who made sure everyone had a blast at the Studierendenhaus until the early morning hours. Ending their Dj set with the Japanese National anthem performed by console feat. hanayo, sending everybody home to sleep.

The Karaoke Party in the basement of the festvalcenter was followed by a big J-Pop Festival Party with DJ Hito from Berlin. After a 2 year break Hito is back in Frankfurt! DJ Hito finally enchanted all party guests with her charming sounds.

Originally from Japan, she’s now been a DJ in Berlin since 1999. Hito either djs solo or together with DJ Kentastic as BANZAI KIDS at various clubs. With her mixture of a little dance music, house, j-pop and hip hop she always manages to make everyone dance at Nippon Connection Festival.

On the last day of the festival the final of the second Nippon Cinema Award was held. The Nippon Cinema Award 2006 went to the UNIVERSITY OF LAUGHS (Warai no daigaku) by Mamoru HOSHI, the second winner is TRAIN MAN by Shosuke MURAKAMI, and the third winner is HI-BI: DAYS OF FIRE by Banmei TAKAHASHI. The Nippon Cinema Award was endowed with a 2,000 Euro prize for the first time.

The festival came to an end on Sunday night, with everybody being happy and tired and filled with many new interesting impressions. But it’s not over yet…under the label “Nippon Connection on Tour” parts of the festival program will travel to Leipzig, Barcelona, Berlin, Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Den Haag and Rotterdam within the next months. In addition to the European dates there are also plans for tour dates in the USA. So look out for Nippon Connection coming to a place near you!

Nippon Connection 2006
Date: 19th – 23rd April, 2006
Place: Festival Center, Filmtheater Valentin, Literaturhaus Frankfurt

Text and photos: Catrin Altenbreandt from Pixelgarten

See also Nippon Connection 2004 and 2005 articles in Shift.

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