Tuesday, 15 May 2012
Midosuji Festa, 10th anniversary of Osaka's Street Fair
Osaka celebrated it's rich culture this week with a 10th anniversary party of the Midosuji Open Festa, known in short today as the Midosuji Festa. The aim of the organization of this very busy street fair is to attract more visitors to Osaka as a whole and to the Midosuji Avenue and Minami neighbourhood in particular. An 'urban regeneration' is what they call it. Minami and Midosuji though are very different neighborhoods. Midosuji Avenue represents the high end visitor with all the big brands and their flag ship stores like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, Cartier, Hermès and Dior. Minami attracts a younger, more urban public. There you'll find the new trends, or shops for all kinds of subcultures, but also clubs, small restaurants and izakaya.
But maybe when it comes to open air street fun, like music, dance, art, fashion and sports, the public is not so different! Last year the Festa was flooded with 370,000 visitors. I would not be surprised if the Midosuji Festa 2012 attracted even more. The Festa sure could count on the weather for support, it was a great 21 °C, a prefect day for a street fair. The downside of these perfect conditions, not surprisingly, are the huge numbers of visitors. All dance, sports and music performances were on street level, not on a podium. That way everyone crowds around, so if you're not on the front row, tough. If you have a preference to see something, try to find a spot beforehand and stick with it. It would give you the chance to then see all the dance performances, or all sports performances for instance. Because those are all held continuously through the day, by different groups.
I would recommend the dance groups. They are always so very energetic, happy and colourful! The groups consist mostly of very young dancers to sometimes quit old and they are with many. Several play their own (small) instruments or shout out yells to the music. See at least a show or three, you're in for a superb spectacle. The sports performances differed greatly, but all had their own appeal. Some funny (basketball), some exiting (tae kwon do), and some awe inspiring (karate). If you like to take it low-key, watch a fashion show, or go to the 'beauty salon' where you can have your hair or nails done. Why not?! All in all, the day had a very positive and happy vibe.