E: 60 Years of Friendship brings Team 8 to Manila

Earlier in January 2016, the Philippines was visited by Their Majesties, the Emperor and Empress of Japan. It was the major highlight of the anniversary of diplomatic ties between Japan and the Philippines. Many cultural events have been lined up this year to celebrate and provide a huge boost to the two countries’ ever-deepening relations including Team 8’s return to Manila.

Japanese Pop Culture was Highlighted for the 60th

The Embassy of Japan in the Philippines, together with co-organizer Hallohallo Entertainment Inc., brought j-pop fans, otaku and Japanese culture enthusiasts together in the ’60 Years of Philippines-Japan Friendship Celebration’, a free musical event at the Market!Market! Activity Center last December 4, 2016 featuring performances from popular Japanese girl group, AKB48.

team 8 akb48 manila 2016

Last year, we remember AKB48’s Team 8 performance at the Cool Japan Festival also by Hallohallo Entertainment Inc.. Returning Team 8 members: Rin Okabe, Maria Shimizu, Nanase Yoshikawa, Riona Hamamatsu, Yurina Gyoten and Rena Fukuchi. They will be accompanied by Hijiri Tanikawa, Nanami Sato, Ayane Takahashi, Serina Nagano, Kotone Hitomi and Karin Shimoaoki.

The event hopes to embody the two nations’ shared fascination for each other’s culture by bringing together some of the well-loved icons and spectacles in both Japan and the Philippines.

Movie Trailers and Hello Kitty Live!

The first part of the event was to introduce Japanese Pop Culture with Hero TV as major Media Partner. One of the movie trailers featured during the event was the most awaited live-action movie based on a popular manga: Your Lie in April (Shigatsu wa kimi Uso). The movie will open on PH cinemas on December 7. Call your local cinemas for updates:

It has been long announced that Your Name (Kimi no Nawa), one of the all-time highest-grossing films in Japan will be shown in local theaters. The film has been making waves around the world for it’s impressively executed visual narrative. Creator Makoto Shinkai revolved the story around the lives of a high-school city boy and and a teenage country girl who found their bodies swapped between each other. Opens on Philippine Cinemas on December 14. PH trailer:

The stage show, Hello Kitty Live: Fashion and Friends was also featured during the intro to promote the tour of the interactive and breathtaking experience of the real life of Japanese icon, Hello Kitty. The show will run from December 20, 2016 to January 1, 2017 at the Meralco Theater.  Book your tickets at www.ticketworld.com.ph or call 891-9999.

Starmarie and AKB48 performance was amazing

I have followed this story from start to finish and have waited for the live song and dance numbers and my patience was rewarded. First of all, the dancers from Movie Stars Cafe who performed three songs made us want to go to their restaurant. Other than the costume swap (bet. Kotori and Maki dancers), everything for me was great!



Starmarie is a Tokyo based all-female Japanese idol group that was formed in July 2008. Its five members perform fantasy-themed songs and are known for sporting Gothic Lolita fashion. Starmarie has been in the country a total of seven times and has since started a solid fanbase. The group is currently composed of Kishita Nozomi, Takamori Shino, Matsuzaki Hiroka, Nakane Motoko, Nakane Monya and Watanabe Kaede.


AKB48 is a Japanese all-female idol group that was formed in 2005 with the theme ‘idols you can meet‘ in mind. Team 8 was introduced in 2014 under the concept “idols who go to meet you,” as the members tour various regions of Japan and other countries to perform and meet fans. MNL48, a sister group of AKB48 was announced to start their First Generation Audition. Team 8 has shown their support to its future members and to “believe in yourself and good luck!”


Our full coverage of the event will be published in a future issue of the magazine available online while the event videos will be uploaded on our Youtube page.