The aspirations of the past three years, which have been waiting for the K-POP festival, once again shook the Japanese archipelago. KCON 2022 JAPAN, held at Ariake Arena in Koto-Ku, Tokyo, Japan, gathered about 65,000 K-pop fandoms for three days from October 14 to 16 and is the world’s largest K-pop event. It showed the still power of the Culture (K-Culture) festival.
KCON 2022 JAPAN was held in two parts: a ‘convention’ where you can directly experience various K-cultures and a ‘SHOW’ where you can enjoy colorful performances by K-pop artists. In particular, this KCON is filled with experiences such as talk shows with artists, programs on various topics such as K-beauty/K-lifestyle, and sharing of fandom culture, and the convention is open for free. CJ ENM, the organizer, explained that it was aimed at a more relaxed ‘festival’ where everyone could freely participate rather than a relatively rigid exhibition or exhibition.
An official from CJ ENM said, “Considering that October in Japan is considered the ‘festival season,’ the space where various experience programs are held in addition to performances is organized into an outdoor convention that harmonizes with a nearby park. I wanted to convey my feelings,” he said.
Famous artists directly visited the convention booth created under the theme of ‘WE ARE K-POP’ to communicate with fans. Artists such as Kep1er (Kep1er), TO1, and Jo Yu-ri held the ‘Heart Pose Party’ at the booth, giving an impression as an event that shot the taste of fans who wanted to interact with the artists a little closer.
In addition, there was also a ‘MEET&GREET’ space where artists and fans could meet and communicate more closely, and a total of 13 teams shared and interacted with fans in various ways for three days.
At the ‘Mnet Plus’ corner, the virtual space of the original contents’ ROAD TO MAX’ and ‘KPOP MAKER’ was brought to life, and visitors continued to visit. Brave Girls · DKB · DKZ · Tempest · TNX · VIVIZ · woo! Ah! Artist talk shows were held to provide time to communicate with fans.
Participants directly experience the various games of the ‘SomesomeSomesome’ program hosted on the Mnet K-POP YouTube channel and actively participate in programs that can decorate the top loader and photocard, the play culture of GenZ (Gen Z). I enjoyed the fun of POP content. In the ‘LIFE STYLE’ zone of the convention, there was also a space to experience Japanese brand products and services that global GenZ fandoms are paying attention to by linking K-pop artists, which drew a lot of attention.
Also, at this KCON, a ‘Global Food Street’ zone was created centered on various Korean foods, satisfying the five senses of the fans. Various K-food-related companies, including CJ CheilJedang’s global brand ‘Bibigo,’ conducted promotions. Thousands of people flocked to the ‘Bibigo Mandu’ tasting booth, and young K-pop fandoms gathered in food trucks selling Korean-style snacks such as tteokbokki and gimbap to enjoy the food.
KCON’s ‘principle,’ which supports the global expansion of SMEs, was also realized at this event. At the site, flea market concept booths of large, small, and medium-sized enterprises, agricultural and fishery cooperation foundations, and SMEs were set up to introduce Korean tourism and SME products and services to local visitors. In addition, CJ ENM, the Seoul Tourism Organization, and the Korea Cultural Heritage Foundation held an event to encourage visitors to visit Korea, focusing on Korean cultural heritage.
The reaction of local audiences to KCON, which quenched the thirst for Japanese K-pop fandoms, who had been waiting for about three years, was hotter than ever.
Fujiwara Shoko (28), a fan of ‘Kepler’ who flew from Osaka far away, said, “It was good to see Kepler up close and to cheer for him.
Kotone Matsumoto (24), a resident, said, “I didn’t know the time was passing because I was enjoying KCON, which is full of K-pop artists and various events related to Korean culture.