The Japanese Cultural Festival is an annual event that is organised by the Japan Information & Culture Centre (JICC). During the Cultural Festival, the members of the audience are exposed to different aspects of Japan and the Japanese Culture. Since its inception in 2008, the Japanese Cultural Festival has been held in Nairobi County. This year, for the first time, the Japanese Cultural Festival was held outside Nairobi County; it was held in the lakeside city of Kisumu.
The First Japanese Cultural Festival in Kisumu was held on Saturday, 13th September 2014 at the Kisumu Social Centre. The Ambassador of Japan to Kenya, Mr. Tatsushi Terada, received the 400 participants of the cultural festival who included students from various primary and secondary schools within Kisumu county and also members of the public. Also in attendance were Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCV) and a team from Nagasaki University in Japan. The cultural festival was officially opened by H. E. Mr. Tatsushi Terada and Mrs. Jennifer Kere, County Executive Member for Education, Youth, Culture & Social Services, Kisumu County. In their opening remarks, they both acknowledged the fact that relations between Kisumu and Japan have been cordial and they expressed their hope in the further strengthening of the ties in the present and future.
The main event of the cultural festival was a Japanese Chorus Competition by school children in Kisumu County. The students performed various songs by Japanese artists. Inasmuch as the songs were Japanese, the students creatively added a Kenyan touch to their performances. This was seen in the costumes that some of the groups chose to wear and also in their dance on the stage.