Doki Doki - The Manchester Japanese Festival


Culture | Language | Food & drink | Fashion & cosplay | Games | Films | Music & dance | Art | Martial arts | Raffle | After-party

Below are details of the events that took place at the 2013 festival.

For the times of the events at Doki Doki 2013, see the festival programme.


Talk: The role of Japanese women

A talk by Akemi Solloway on the role of women in Japanese society.

Talk: Mythology in manga & anime

Mythology plays a huge part in some of the world's greatest stories, and this is no different in manga and anime. This talk by Tucky, organiser of SunnyCon, will take a closer look at how mythology has influenced manga and anime, old and new, and show just how much it is used and inspires the latest manga and anime series, even appearing in places that you wouldn't expect!

Talk: Japanese festivals

A talk by Angela Davies on matsuri (Japanese festivals).

Talk: Aid for Japan

Akemi Solloway will give a talk about Aid for Japan, the charity she founded to provide long-term support for orphans of the 2011 Tohoku disaster in Japan, which the Doki Doki Festival is pleased to support.

Panel: Visiting & living in Japan

A panel session with the following guests answering the questions of anyone interested in visiting or living in Japan:


Japanese language lessons

Yoko Naasani from the Manchester College of Languages will be giving short beginner lessons in the Japanese language to small groups of interested people throughout the day.

Japanese language competition

We are holding a competition for people learning to speak the Japanese language. It will be split into three levels: beginner, intermediate and advance.

Applications for the language competition are now closed.

Full details of the language competition are available on the Doki Doki forum.

Food & drink

There will be stalls serving Japanese food and drink, plus a maid café service.

Sushi Craft

Sushi, bento and more. See the menu here.

Welcome to Sushi Craft

Sweet Octopus

Japanese cakes and tea.

Sweet Octopus - Patisseries from Tokyo - Specialists in Japanese-themed parties and events - -

Maid café

Sweet Cupcake Maids and Sweet Octopus will be providing a maid café table waiting service where, for an extra charge on your food or drink purchase, you can have it delivered to your table by a maid, with proceeds going to Doki Doki's supported charity. The maids will also be performing dance routines during the day.

Fashion & cosplay

All attendees are encouraged to attend wearing traditional or contemporary Japanese fashion or cosplay. A professional photographer will be present all day for photo shoots.

Please read the cosplay rules on the Doki Doki forum, especially the props rules, which apply to all attendees.

There are male and female changing rooms with coin-operated lockers available on-site.

Cosplay competition

A cosplay competition with prizes, run by Becca from the League of Extraordinary Cosplayers.

Registration will be on the day only.

Full details of the cosplay competition are available on the Doki Doki forum.

Harajuku fashion pageant

A pageant featuring various styles of Harajuku Japanese street fashion, with prizes for the participants.

Applications for the fashion pageant are now closed.

Full details of the Harajuku fashion pageant are available on the Doki Doki forum.

Workshop: Introduction to making cosplay props

A workshop run by Matt from Gilgamesh Arms showing techniques for making cosplay props.


Video games

A selection of Japanese video games to play, plus Street Fighter and Mario Kart tournaments with prizes, organised in conjunction with the Lass o'Gowrie Computer Club and TOKYO Chipped.

Registration for the tournaments will be on the day only, in the morning.


A tournament of the trading card game Yu-Gi-Oh! with a prize for the overall winner. Details to be confirmed.

Traditional Japanese festival game

For a small donation to Doki Doki's supported charity, you can try your skill at the traditional Japanese festival game of kamizumo.


Demonstrations of the ancient board game of Go by the British Go Association.


Anime and live-action film screenings.

Wolf Children

Directed by Mamoru Hosoda, 2012; Cert. PG; Anime; Dubbed; Released by Manga Entertainment; Trailer

The latest film from the acclaimed director of Summer Wars and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, not due a UK home release until December 2013.

Hana is a 19-year-old student who falls in a fairy-tale like love with a wolf man. Over the course of the 13-year story, Hana gives birth to two children – older sister Yuki and younger brother Ame, or Snow and Rain. At first, the family quietly lives in the city, trying to hide their wolf heritage, but when the wolf man suddenly dies, Hana makes the decision to move to a rural town, far from their previous city life.

The Land of Hope

Directed by Sion Sono, 2012; Cert. 12; Live-action; Subtitled; Released by Third Window Films; Trailer

In a typical Japanese village, Yoichi Ono lives with his wife, Izumi, and his parents. The Ono family live a frugal, but happy life as dairy farmers in the peaceful village. One day, the worst earthquake in history strikes, causing a nearby nuclear power station to explode. Their neighbours, who live within the range of the nuclear power station, are forcibly ordered to evacuate by the government, but the Ono family have only half of their garden designated as being within range. They then have to make a hard decision whether to take refuge or not.

The film, which examines a highly relevant subject, describes the mental anguish of the family that is forced to separate by an extremely unfortunate event beyond their control. The past, the present, and the future of the two couples from different generations rises to the surface.

009 RE:Cyborg

Directed by Kenji Kamiyama, 2012; Cert. 12A; Anime; Subtitled; Released by All The Anime; Trailer

Once there were nine cybernetic heroes who had long fought for justice. But as their struggle finally restored peace, they eventually disappeared from the pages of history and from people's memory...

2013: Skyscrapers across the world are hit by suicide bombers with no apparent connection. The nine heroes gather once again after three decades to fight against this faceless menace. They appear untouched by time, but society around them has changed dramatically, as has the very idea of "justice" they used to believe in...

What is their role in the world now?

Oblivion Island: Haruka And The Magic Mirror

Directed by Shinsuke Sato, 2009; Cert. PG; Anime; Dubbed; Released by Manga Entertainment; Trailer

An animated romp for the young and the young at heart! Oblivion Island, an internationally acclaimed feature film, blends Japanese folklore and storybook charm reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland into an exhilarating tale sure to amaze animation fans of all ages.

Sixteen-year-old Haruka is on a mission to find her mirror, a precious childhood gift from her late mother that has disappeared. On her search, she follows a strange fox-like creature to Oblivion Island, a mystical world overflowing with once-cherished items taken from their neglectful owners. Trouble follows Haruka and her new friend Teo at every turn, as they contend with the island's overbearing ruler, who will stop at nothing to use the mirror for his own sinister plan!

Music & dance

Budo Grape

A live performance by this catchy, high-energy avant-garde pop band from "Neo-Nagoya", Japan.

Formed in 2001 and with 6 albums released to date, Budo Grape, whose members all have Grape as their last name, are fronted by model and radio personality Quminco on vocals and Nagoya music legend Nagai (formerly of The Shockers), who is the band's chief songwriter and guitarist, supported by Matsui on bass, Taichi on drums and Naho on keyboards.

After hosting the band at a memorable gig on their first ever visit to the UK last year, we are pleased to welcome them back to Manchester for Doki Doki 2013!

As well as performing in the afternoon at the main festival, they will also be playing in the evening at the after-party.


A live performance by J-rock band Colors.

Fronted by Japanese singer and songwriter KenG, Colors are a four-piece band founded in London in 2010 playing music influenced by '80s Japanese rock and punk.

They are currently working on their second album.

Beckii Cruel

A live performance by J-pop singer & dancer Beckii Cruel.

Rebecca Anne Flint, better known by her stage name Beckii Cruel, is a pop dancer and singer from the Isle of Man. In 2009, she became a sensation in Japan after videos of her dancing to J-pop songs on YouTube were posted around the Internet.

She has released several songs, including the UK-charting "You Can't Kiss Me", and provides guest vocals on the recently-released single "Shi No Barado" by Gaijin Rock band Area 11.

Beckii gave a great performance at the first Doki Doki Festival and we are very pleased to welcome her back for Doki Doki 2013!

Naomi Suzuki

A live performance by J-pop singer Naomi Suzuki.

Originally from Tagawa, Japan, and currently living in London, Naomi has a long list of talents, including singer, songwriter, model, actress, radio presenter and music producer.

As well as releasing a number of solo singles, she is one half of musical duo AJ Unity.

Neo Kei DJ

Rachel from Liverpool-based Japanese music blog Neo Kei will be playing a variety of Japanese popular music throughout the afternoon, in between the live band/singer performances and until the end of the daytime event.


Talks on and demonstrations of taiko, traditional Japanese drumming, by Kayobi Taiko.

Formed in 2010, Kayobi Taiko are a "community" taiko group who take their membership from the other groups in the Wem Taiko family, both past and present. Members of the group first got together and performed in June 2011 at Wem Taiko Fest 2. Since then, they have performed regularly in the local area under the watchful eye of James Barrow (Taiko West) and Malcolm Brown (Taiko Rangers). Kayobi's repertoire explores a range ofstyles and has attracted very positive reviews. They are much in demand!


Performances on the koto, a traditional stringed instrument, by Sumie Kent.


Liam Morgan will be playing the shamisen, a 400 year old instrument. Don't let its age fool you – it has a fast, heavy and distinct sound!

Awa Odori

Dancer Awa Siren will lead a traditional Awa Odori festival parade around the Doki Doki Festival venue and then give a dance performance.

Group odorite dance

An opportunity for odorite dancers to perform some popular songs on-stage as a group, led by the Sweet Cupcake Maids.

The songs will be: Ievan Polka, PonPonPon, Danjo and Happy Synthesizer. Anyone who knows the moves to these songs (at any level) is welcome to join the group.



Lessons in origami, the traditional Japanese art of paper folding, plus finished models for sale, with proceeds going to Doki Doki's supported charity.


The University of Manchester Japanese Society will be demonstrating shodo, Japanese calligraphy.

Have your name written in Japanese, with proceeds going to Doki Doki's supported charity.


The Wirral Bonsai Society will be exhibiting examples of bonsai, the Japanese art of miniature tree growing.

Manga drawing

The Manchester University Comic Collective will be giving beginner lessons in drawing manga, Japanese comic books.

Art competition

Draw a piece of art inspired by anime, manga, video games, Japanese culture, etc. The only rule is that the entry must be drawn on the day on official competition entry paper. The competition will run during the afternoon and be judged by some of the artists attending the festival.

Talk: On-line comics & running a successful kickstarter

This talk by self-described queer comic author Tab Kimpton will look at using the Internet as a medium for getting published in the comic world.

Artist panel

A panel session featuring some of the artists attending the festival, where they will answer questions put to them by the festival organisers and the audience.

Face painting

Japanese face painting for children and adults alike, with proceeds going to Doki Doki's supported charity.

Martial arts


Demonstrations of the Okinawan weapon-based martial art of kobudo by Bukido Kobudo Dojo.

Bukido Kobudo Dojo

Samurai & Shinobi

Circle Martial Arts

Demonstrations of samurai and shinobi (ninja) martial arts by Circle Martial Arts.

Have your photograph taken with a fully-armoured samurai – proceeds willl go to Doki Doki's supported charity and to support Circle Martial Arts' dojo as it improves its facilities and provides an amazing place to train.

Karate & Jujutsu

Demonstrations of Okinawan karate and jujutsu by the Bushinkai Academy of Martial Arts.

Authentic Japanese martial arts in Manchester - Karate Jutsu, Nihon Jujutsu, Aiki Jujutsu, Kobu Jutsu -

Kaze Arashi Ryu

Kaze Arashi Ryu

Demonstrations of the various armed and unarmed techniques of Kaze Arashi Ryu by St. Helens Kaze Arashi Ryu.


We will be running a raffle, with all proceeds going to Doki Doki's supported charity.

First prize will be a Sony PlayStation 3 with copies of Final Fantasy XIII-2 and Street Fighter and Super Street Fighter IV, plus a number of other prizes donated by our sponsors, traders and artists.


In the evening following the main festival, there will be a cosplay after-party co-hosted by the Manchester University Japanimation Society (MUJS), with a live performance by J-pop band Budo Grape and DJ Happosai from NanimeW playing J-pop/rock/dance, anime and video game themes.

It will take place from 9pm until 2am in the club space on the first floor of the Manchester Metropolitan University Students' Union, just around the corner from the main festival venue. Entry will be open to people aged 18 and above only. For details of the cost of entry, see the registration page.

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