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Japanese popculture festival "AniMatsuri 2018"

On September 22-23, Tartu will host the 12th annual AniMatsuri festival, an event dedicated to Japanese animation and pop culture.

This two-day youth-focused festival will bring in visitors from Estonia, Latvia, Finland, and other nearby places. The programming is designed to be varied and exciting and as interest in Japan has significantly increased over the last few years,

Festival visitors can participate in different competitions, hear various talks and presentations, and participate in workshops. The venue will have exciting manga books to read, and vendor booths, a flea market and an Artist Alley to enjoy. The popular video game tournaments will also be run again this year.

The most awaited event is the cosplay competition, where participants transform themselves into various characters from anime, manga, films, and games. Among the many awards for outstanding costumes and performances is the chance to represent Estonia at the European Cosplay Championship in London, and the Nordic Cosplay Championship in Sweden. The competition’s Grand Prix winner will travel to France to attend Europe’s biggest Japan-themed convention, JapanExpo. The competition will be judged by an international jury of expert cosplayers.

The festival will be held at the Hugo Treffner Gymnasium in the heart of Tartu’s Old Town. The traditional Saturday night afterparty will return to the Club of Different Rooms and feature DJs playing dance music as well as video games and exciting audience-participation games.

AniMatsuri is organized by NPO Japanese Culture Club Asashio (MTÜ Jaapani kultuuriklubi Asashio), with partners GamingHouse, Estravel, the Embassy of Japan, the UniCon festival in Latvia, and its main sponsor is the Tartu City Government.

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