The 2013 J-Pop Anime Singing, Cosplay Mini-Contest and Anime Film Showing were successfully held at the SM Mall of Asia Center Stage as one of the highlights of the Philippines-Japan Friendship Month and the 40th Year of Asean-Japan Friendship and Cooperation. The non-stop array of activities organized by the Japanese Embassy, the Japan Foundation Manila, and their partner organizations and sponsors served as testimonials on the strength of cultural ties between the Philippines in Japan, with Filipinos openly embracing the Japanese people’s modern art forms.
2013 J-Pop Anime Singing Contest. Four exceptionally talented J-Pop singers wowed the judges and emerged as winners for this year’s 2013 J-Pop Contest. The grand prize was awarded to Melrick James Celajes, the nine-year-old boy who impressed the crowd in his rendition of “Piece of my Wish.” The soulful voice of Sheena Stacey Gonzales landed her second place as she performed “Kimi ni Todoke.” The third spot was given to Diana Tabitha Caro as she performed the “Ryuusei.” Fourth place winner was Alexys Arcilla for his heartfelt performance of the song, “Saigo no Ame. ” This year’s recipient of Hero’s Choice and Toie’s Choice awards was Melrick James Celajes.
The winners received exciting prizes such as gadgets from Sony, Toshiba, Canon and Panasonic, scholarships from Center for Pop Music and various merchandize from Uniqlo, Yakult and Ajinomoto.
Cosplay Mini-Contest. Dressed in their favorite characters, anime enthusiasts gathered together for the Mini Cosplay Event. To create an even exciting twist, the mecha and cloth categories were added for this year’s contest.
For the cloth category, Rica Gabrielle Ortiz as Miku Hatsune ranked first and the second place was awarded to Ian Christopher Ticar as Agent Hunk. For the mecha category, Seir Luke Buelos as Gundam Heavy Arms took the first place and Ashley Misaki Francisco as Garo got the second spot.
The Toei’s Choice Award was given to Rica Gabrielle Ortiz and Shan Lowel Cruz as Garulu, while Christine Jean Blardony as Xiang Yu Armor and Gregory Cole Reyes as Yukito emerged as Hero’s Choice awardees. The winners enjoyed cool gizmos from Panasonic and Canon and gifts from Uniqlo, Yakult and Ajinomoto.
Japanese pop artist Joe Inoue surprised his Filipino fans when he emerged onto the stage for a brief performance. His song “Closer” set the audience in cheerful spirits.
Captain DFA, the very own hero of the Philippines takes part in the celebration as well.
The appearance of Doraemon and Nobita never fails to fascinate the audience.
Anime Film Showing. The anime film screenings of the Place Promised in Our Days and 5 Centimeters per Second at the SM Mall of Asia, Cinema 6 gained an overwhelming support from anime enthusiasts. About 1,500 movie goers were touched by this year’s anime films which focused on friendship and relationships.