The general producer talks about the past and future of the anime event 'Machi★Asobi' which has been a huge success in the local area.

In addition to

AnimeJapan , which is Japan's largest anime event, there are also many events held in regional areas, such as the Kyoto International Manga and Anime Fair (Kyomaf), which is held in Kyoto. Among them, Machi★Asobi, which is held in Tokushima, has a particularly strong presence. Hikaru Kondo, the event's general producer, spoke at AnimeJapan 2015 about why the event is held in Tokushima, rather than Tokyo, Osaka, or Nagoya, and why it attracts so many people.

In addition to Mr. Kondo, the speakers at the seminar stage ``Regions, Anime, and Events: Past ``Machiasobi'' and future ``Machiasobi'''' were Tokushima Anime Ambassador Eriko Nakamura and Yuri Ehara of Machi★Asobi Cafe.

The beginning of 'Machi★Asobi' dates back to 2009, when UFO Table opened its Tokushima studio. It is a well-known fact among fans that animation production companies are concentrated in western Tokyo, along the Chuo Line, and UFO Table is also located near Koenji Station. However, creators tend to base their stories on their own experiences, as scenes along the Chuo Line often appear in anime. Mr. Kondo thought, ``Maybe if we drastically change the environment, what we're making will change,'' and he initially thought of opening an ocean-view studio in Okinawa. Although this idea was rejected, Kondo achieved his goal of ``changing the environment'' by opening a studio along a river in his hometown of Tokushima.

The building shown in this slide is UFO Table Tokushima Studio.

Setting up a studio means that the staff working there will live nearby and interact with local people in their daily lives. However, when Mr. Kondo returned to Tokushima for the first time in a while to open a studio, what awaited him was an arcade that had lost its former bustle and turned into a shuttered town. 'I have to do something for my hometown.' The idea that Mr. Kondo proposed to the Tokushima City Tourism Association was the ``Awa Odori Collaboration Poster''.

For the detailed history of why collaboration posters were created, a representative from the Tokushima City Tourism Association talks about it in

Machi★Asobi vol.8 , so please refer to the article below.

Tourism association talks about why ``Kara no Kyoukai'' was adopted for the Awa Odori poster - GIGAZINE

Following the poster was a collaboration with an event called ``Bizan Summit Autumn Festa.'' At that time, the number of anime that could be seen in rural areas was quite limited, and the number of events was limited.
For example, it was concentrated in Tokyo, especially Akihabara, so Mr. Kondo thought, ``Wouldn't it be meaningful to do it in a rural area?'' He accepted this collaboration and thought it was ``just right,' ' and Machi★Asobi vol.1 was held. To be done.

However, in Machi★Asobi, which was an unknown event at the time, for example, even if it was said to be a `` ropeway guide announcement '', it was difficult to convey what it was because it was the first time it was being done. Even though I understood that, I didn't know what was going on from there, so I got off the ropeway and dashed right away, but I was confused because there were still ups and downs waiting for me to get to the venue...

In fact, if you didn't use the ropeway, the venue is located at the top of the mountain, which you would have climbed up a mountain trail like this, so it's difficult for people who don't know the venue to imagine the venue beforehand.

Although it is a mountain, Mt. Bizan is the main venue for events, so I climbed it while thinking about why we would hold an event on a mountain.

12,000 people visited Machi★Asobi vol.1, and the number of visitors has steadily increased since then, reaching 70,000 in Machi★Asobi vol.12. By the way, this number was measured using a ticking counter in an attempt to be as close to the real number as possible, so it probably includes people who were counted twice and people who were just passing by rather than participating in Machi★Asobi. This is calculated with a slight discount. Generally speaking, these numbers tend to be high, so if it were counted in another way, it might be expressed as an event with 100,000 people.

Eriko Nakamura has participated in Machi★Asobi many times since

the New Type Anime Award in fall 2012 ( Machi★Asobi vol.9 ). Compared to the first time they participated, they felt that the second time, and even more so the third time, was an event that was more closely tied to the local community.

By the way, when Ms. Nakamura visited Tokushima to participate in this award, she took the rubber strap of Haruka Amami, who plays her character, with her, but it was lost as soon as she arrived in Tokushima city. When I talked about this on Niconico about two weeks later, the person who had actually found the lost item said, ``This must have been dropped by someone who participated in Machi★Asobi, so let's deliver it to the headquarters.'' , as the information was circulating on Twitter, the information was quickly spread saying, ``Maybe that's it...'', and about a week after the broadcast, the rubber strap was safely returned to me.

It's not just the number of visitors that is increasing, but the number of exhibitors as well. In vol.1, there were 35 items listed on the flyer, but now there are 206. Even with this, there are still some places that are not listed.

At this point, a publicity VTR was shown for those who don't know the actual Machi★Asobi. This is a cosplay space along the river.

This is probably something like the Oklahoma mixer that followed Tsukineko's big announcement in

Machi★Asobi vol.12 .

This video was made by Tokushima Prefecture.

Machi★Asobi has a very high repeat rate and stay rate, and according to the Tokushima Shimbun, 75% of people have participated more than once, 42.9% have participated more than 4 times, and 60% of the total Of the participants living outside the prefecture, 46% said they were staying overnight.

Machi★Asobi Cafe was born from Machi★Asobi, where girls who aspire to become anime song singers and voice actors serve customers. Yuri Ebara is a cast member of Machi★Asobi Cafe, and is also a voice actress who made her debut from the cafe.

Ms. Ebara plays the role of Chiwa in ``

Ohenro. ~88 Steps' ', in which three girls go on a long journey around Shikoku. 'Ohenro.' sells collaboration goods such as T-shirts like this one.

The next 'Machi★Asobi vol.14' will be held from May 3rd (Sunday) to May 5th (Tuesday).

One of the events that has been decided is the ``Mitsuhiro Ichiki & Nana Inoue wedding''. Mr. Ichiki has been participating in Machi★Asobi since vol.1 as a member of the unit 'Tsukineko'. It seems that there have already been offers of cooperation from local businesses, and there seems to be no problem with costumes and virgin roads.

Furthermore, an event using a 60-passenger cruiser that was rumored to be held will also be held. First of all, we will have a fun time on Sunday, May 3rd. A dinner cruise will be held.

Furthermore, it has been decided that an unknown event 'Machi★Asobi RUN' will be held. Since Tokushima has the know-how of holding the Tokushima Marathon, it seems that athletic events have been incorporated into the city. It is planned that this will not be a full marathon, but rather a shorter distance that everyone can enjoy together.

Here is the list of companies currently planning to participate.

And finally, about the future Machi★Asobi. Mr. Kondo said that he spent seven years thinking and asking himself, ``What does it mean to revitalize a town?'' In fact, Tokushima was once ranked 10th in Japan, and the arcade in Higashishinmachi, which is used as one of the venues for Machi★Asobi, was so crowded that it was impossible to pass by bicycle. It is a city with a population of 220,000 people, and the prefecture has a population of 700,000 people. However, Mr. Kondo said that rather than bringing back the past, the question is how to move forward into the future, and how to build a bridge to the future.

In Spring Machi★Asobi vol.14, we will not be climbing the summit of Mt. Bizan, but there will be many stages taking full advantage of the two parks along the river, so even those who have participated in the event may not be able to do so. Even if you have never done it before, please come and join us.

in Coverage,   Anime, Posted by logc_nt