Death and the Afterlife in Anime

L 19.0918:00 – 19:00Room 203ENGIrina Möldre
Religious Studies department, University of Tartu

Japan’s death culture is fascinating and multifaceted. Unsurprisingly, a lot of its expressions have been addressed in anime. This presentation will give a short overview of both Japanese and Western attitudes to death that have influenced mangakas, as well as a brief summary of the manga/anime interpretations of famous persons and events in Japanese traditional culture and history.

Live Action in Japanese Film – Not As Bad As You Think

L 19.0912:30 – 13:30Room 225ENGJaana Albert
Cypsis – Asian drama blogger

Most anime fans get the creeps when they hear about a live-action version of an anime or manga. Still, live action films are currently the biggest part of Japan’s movie industry, and many live action features have exceeded the fame of their originals. This presentation gives an overview of the nature of live action films, their positive and negative aspects, and many examples of various live action productions.

Cypsis has been blogging about Asian dramas and films for 5 years, and watching them since 2009. In addition to her own blog, she’s also written reviews for other blogs, as well as DramaFeaver – an online video streaming website that is owned by SoftBank. Her other blog, written in collaboration with her twin sister Yanne, includes various Japanese travelogues, letters about life in Japan, observations of the filming of TV shows, and other exciting things.

Japan’s Wakō Pirates – Outlaw Robbers or Samurai Conquerors?

L 19.0913:00 – 14:00Room 221ESTMaret Nukke
Japan Studies lecturer at the Estonian Humanities Institute, Tallinn University

The identity of the supposedly Japanese mariners who raided the coasts of East Asia in the 15th and 16th century is not as clear as the contemporary Chinese and Korean sources claim. Who were these “robbers” from the south, to whom the Chinese Ming dynasty officials and the Korean Joseon state rulers gave the name wakō – Japanese dwarf pirates? This lecture will look at the various versions of their origins and activities, and draw some parallels with famous Estonian pirates.

Weddings in Korea: Then and Now

L 19.0913:45 – 14:45Room 225ENGAhyoon Choi
Japanese-English Language School

This presentation is dedicated to wedding traditions in Korea, and will provide an overview of wedding celebrations in older times and today.

Cosplay hacks – Japanese kimonos

L 19.0914:15 – 15:45Room 141ENGPandemonnium
Latvia’s leading cosplay group

The kimono is one of the most well-known elements of Japanese culture, and today it is worn on numerous occasions around the world, cosplay being one of them. If you would like to know how to create your own historically correct kimono, and get tips for wearing a kimono at festivals, this workshop is for you! There will be an overview of the history and development of the kimono, as well as advice on making your own kimono and adjusting it to a festival environment, so that it is comfortable to wear.

Pandemonnium are a Latvian cosplay group who have been active for 6 years. They can be found at various events in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Great Britain. They are a unique group who aim to be the best, and work hard on both their costumes and their performances. Their cosplay choices are highly diverse – from games to anime and manga to original characters. Through all the hardship, their main purpose is to have fun and be creative!

Visual Kei – the Style and Subculture of Japanese Rock Musics

L 19.0914:15 – 15:15Room 203ESTLiisi Tagel
Japanese Studies department, Tallinn University

Visual Kei is a movement in J-rock that is characterized by the extravagant appearance of band members. Although the artists are usually male, they wear heavy makeup and elaborate haircuts, as well as often very feminine clothes. The Visual Kei subculture covers not just the bands, but also the vibrant fan culture, the centerpiece of which is the Visual Kei live concert – a place with very different rules from our own rock gigs.

Kawaii Aesthetics and its Expression in Japanese Street Fashion

L 19.0915:30 – 16:30Room 203ESTAnn Talistu
Japanese Studies department, Tallinn University

Kawaii aesthetics are common in Japanese everyday life, and particularly popular among young people, which has made kawaii one of the keywords of Japanese pop culture.

This presentation will provide an overview of the creation of kawaii aesthetics, its modification over time, and its expression through various styles of street fashion (lolita, gyaru, decora, etc.). Current trends in Japanese street fashion will also be covered.

What Do the Japanese Really Eat?

L 19.0915:30 – 16:45Room 221ESTMaria Lilje

Let’s talk about the broad Japanese menu in detail – from traditional to borrowed and adapted dishes, from home cooking to restaurants and catering, and how to experiment with Japanese food in your own home.

All of this will be presented by the head chef and owner of Sushimon, Maria Lilje. Maria has a degree in Asian and Japanese Cultural Studies from Tallinn University, and has studied at Tokyo’s Imperial Gakushuin College. She also got a chef’s degree from the Tallinn Service School. She currently runs Sushimon, and promoted Japanese culture in Estonia through various organizations.

EuroCosplay Finals, or, There and Back Again

L 19.0916:15 – 17:15Room 225ENGOlga Bocharova

EuroCosplay is one of the world’s biggest cosplay contests, organized by MCM ComicCon in London, and featuring cosplayers from various countries. So what’s MCM ComicCon, and what does it look like? How do you prepare for the competition, how is it judged, and how do you interact with other participants? What are the problems and surprises? If you want to hear all about this adventure first hand, come and hear our last year’s finalist Olga tell you the story!


L 19.0916:45 – 17:45Room 203ENGPandemonnium
Latvia’s leading cosplay group

What is it like to work in a group? Cosplay is a field where large groups don’t stay together very long, for many good reasons. In their presentation, Daria and Laila from Pandemonnium will give an overview of the benefits and drawbacks of cosplaying as a group, what you need to consider before getting together, and what sort of desperate experiences they’ve had in their own history. They will also be answering audience questions, trying to give a clear picture of life as a cosband.

Pandemonnium are a Latvian cosplay group who have been active for 6 years. They can be found at various events in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Great Britain. They are a unique group who aim to be the best, and work hard on both their costumes and their performances. Their cosplay choices are highly diverse – from games to anime and manga to original characters. Through all the hardship, their main purpose is to have fun and be creative!

Tokyo Ghoul panel

L 19.0917:30 – 18:45Room 225ENGKaneki Ken, Tsukiyama Shuu, Rize Kamishiro, Touka Kirishima, Uta and Suzuya Juuzou

What did Kaneki find in Rize? Why is Tsukiyama addicted to Kaneki’s smell? Who is Suzuya’s favorite fairy-tale character? Finding out the answers on your own is always fun, but now you get to ask the characters of Tokyo Ghoul directly! AniMatsuri 2015 features a panel dedicated to the anime Tokyo Ghoul, where everyone will be able to submit questions for the show’s cast, and have these questions answered.

To make sure that this panel is fun and safe for everyone, let’s go over the rules:

  • This is a panel by the show characters. The panelists themselves are not the focus, so we will not be taking personal questions or opinions on the cosplay quality.
  • The anime is 18+. The panel is probably going to reflect that. People under 18 are welcome to stay, though – we will make the effort to keep the discussion appropriate for a youth festival.
  • Pairing questions are allowed, but don’t go overboard, and remember – not everyone ships what you ship. :)
  • Any questions that the cosplayers are uncomfortable with, they can decline to answer. That is their decision.
  • Be positive! This panel is meant to be friendly. (It is also LGBT+ friendly.) The panelists and festival staff may ask you to leave if you are being rude or disruptive.

Digital World, Digital Monsters

P 20.0913:00 – 14:00Room 221ESTUrmet Lepasson

Long before my birth, and for some time after it, there have been stories invented about what happens when a person’s consciousness goes adventuring in a virtual world, and what can be found there. Let’s talk about some modern animation films where this topic is addressed.

Latvia’s Geek Community and UniCon

P 20.0913:45 – 14:45Room 203ENGSergejs Parvatkins
Raptor-in-Chief, UniCon

This is a presentation about the geek community in Latvia and further afield. It will include an overview of the UniCon convention and its affiliated projects: WinterCon, the UniCon club, the arts workshop, various meetings, a community cafe, cosplay lessons, community work, social impact, and cooperation both within the Baltics and internationally.

Cleanliness and Uncleanliness in Japanese Culture

P 20.0914:30 – 15:45Room 225ESTMirjam Puur
Japanese Studies department, Tallinn University

Japanese culture has always included ideas not only of religion, governance and everyday life, but also cleanliness and uncleanliness. These are expressed through specific places, activities or items, and have influenced people’s lives, behaviors and attitudes to the world around them – whether it be old Japanese birthing huts, border areas, cherry trees, or even toilets. Like other (cultural) peculiarities, cleanliness and uncleanliness are frequently and variously reflected in anime and manga. Sometimes these are analogous to Western cultural phenomena, while in other cases they have completely unique meanings.

Queer relationships in Japan and anime

P 20.0912:30 – 13:30Room 203ENGPiiu Pilt

The portrayal of different sexual minorities (gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender) in anime is very different from how Japanese people view them in real life. Modern Japan is only now taking its first steps towards recognizing one’s identity as determined by sexual preference. However, historically, relations between the same sex were not uncommon and the notions of sex and gender can be ambiguous, transitional and fluid.

Due to the complex nature of this presentation, the recommended age: 14+

Travel Adventure Stories: The Best of 13 Trips and 9 Years

L 19.0915:00 – 15:45Room 225ESTReedik Pääsuke

I have been a regular visitor to Japan since 2006. Over these 9 years, I have taken 13 trips to Japan, spending more than a year in total there. These trips, which involved visiting various corners of Japan, doing internships at multiple hospitals, and training at many dojos, have resulted in a rich selection of experiences, which I would like to share with you.