“Festival do Japao” in Sao Paulo attracts cosplayers, “nikkei-jin”|Arab News Japan

SAO PAULO: A three-day festival featuring Japanese culture took place in Sao Paulo, Brazil, over the weekend, attracting Brazilian cosplayers and “nikkei-jin,” or people of Japanese origin.

Visitors enjoyed watching performances such as “taiko” traditional Japanese drums and eating Japanese food provided at stalls. Sao Paulo has the largest community for people of Japanese descent in the world outside of Japan.

The Japanese culture festival, which attracted some 200,000 visitors, is one of the largest of its kind across the globe outside of Japan, according to the organizers.

The 24th “Festival do Japao” was held on a larger scale than the 2022 event, which took place after a two-year hiatus caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I have empathy for Japanese culture and express it by cosplaying,” Laura Camargo, 31, who was wearing a costume of a game character, said with a smile. Camargo is a Japan lover who uses traditional items such as “omamori” lucky charm and “noren” fabric dividers similar to curtains.

Connections with Japan tend to be weaker among younger nikkei-jin.

Bruna Miyaji, a third-generation nikkei-jin who stopped studying Japanese amid the pandemic, bought manga-related stickers at the festival.

“I want to go to Japan after graduating from high school,” Miyaji, 16, said.

JIJI Press


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