MHB Digital’s (http://mhbdigital.com) principal photographer and co-founder Andy Kho recently starred in the program “Wa! Journey! Wonderful Japanese Culture”, produced by Japanese broadcasting organization San-in Chuo TV from Matsue City, Shimane Prefecture that airs on Media Prima’s TV3 starting 11 December 2019.
Singaporean TV Celebrity Anita Kapoor and Malaysian Celebrity Photographer Andy Kho visited the prefectures of Fukuoka, Shimane, Tottori, and Ishikawa, and experienced Japanese culture, the charms of which can be easily understood when viewed from a more personal perspective. Also, the program featured their experience on a cruise ship sailing around Japan.
The series consists of 6 episodes, each of which 25 minutes, which shares the pleasures of traveling in Japan through Anita’s first-time experience in this country as well as Andy’s perception of Japan in his photography.
The first episode features the Mizuki Shigeru Road, located in Sakaiminato City (Tottori Prefecture), and its numerous bronze statues of yokai monsters. Mizuki Shigeru, the author of Japanese animation “Ge Ge Ge no Kitaro”, is known for traveling around the world looking for yo-kai and visited Malaysia many times. In Matsue City, Shimane prefecture, the duo are introduced to the legend of the late Koizumi Yakumo, the author of the book “KWAIDAN” about yo-kai which was published 100 years ago.
The second episode features Kurayoshi city, Tottori prefecture – a unique town where the old traditional townscape and pop culture merge. The duo visited the museum where traditional crafts, paintings and various kinds of figures are on display, as well as experience the fusion of contemporary and traditional cultures.
The third episode is in Hamada City, Shimane Prefecture, where cruise ship calls began this year and Ohda City, Shimane Prefecture, where the World Heritage Iwami Ginzan Silver Mine is located. Although Iwami Ginzan was one of the world’s largest mining sites that was active for almost 400 years, the natural environment was preserved by means of felling only the required minimum amount of wood needed for the refining process and replanting trees there. Anita and Andy returned to the past by entering into the tunnel where silver was mined. They also enjoyed the heroic and gorgeous traditional perfoming art – Iwami Kagura.
The fourth episode is at Moji located in Fukuoka prefecture with its fashionable modern architecture. Anita and Andy change into traditional Japanese clothes and stroll around the town where there is a mix of Western culture and Japanese culture. In Kurume City, they visited a factory that is makes kimono with patterns of the world countries, including the kimono with patterns from Malaysia, that was also shown in person to Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir earlier this year.
The fifth episode is about Kanazawa city in Ishikawa prefecture that is also called as ‘Little Kyoto”. Anita was challenged to play shamisen, the traditional Japanese instrument, while Andy tried to make Japanese sweets. Furthermore, they experienced the depths of Japanese culture by trying on the costumes of traditional performing arts Noh.
In episode 6, the duo recaps their experience on the cruise ship. The series showcases delicious meals that can be enjoyed in various places – such as blowfish, seafood rice bowl with luxurious sashimi, and more. There were also rare dishes unique to a certain place such as tai-chazuke and mochi shabu.
This program was produced by San-in Chuo Television Broadcasting Company within the program of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications of the Japanese Government and broadcasted in Malaysia by Media Prima.
San-in Chuo Television Broadcasting Company said, “We would like people in Malaysia to get to know the charm of Japanese culture which cannot be perceived just by going to sightseeing spots. And I hope that as many people as possible will visit Japan. Please refer to this program as a fun and deep journey in Japan”
The program “Wa! Journey! Wonderful Japanese Culture” air on TV 3 from 5:35 pm to 6:00 pm every Tuesday and Wednesday starting 11 December 2018.
One of the features of this program is beautiful images including Andy’s photos which were on display at an exhibition at Pavilion Kuala Lumpur in early December 2018.
Photos by San-in Chuo Television Broadcasting Company and Andy Kho Photography (www.andykho.com)