Filming Mixed Roots Kansai

12 21st, 2010

One of the five Hafus we are filming is Ed. Ed is amazing. He brings so much to this film that we can’t wait to share his story with you. One thing that Ed does that we admire and are avidly filming is the community he started called Mixed Roots Kansai. Like us, Ed too believes that Japan is changing and he has created this community to reach out to not only hafus but to other people in Japan who are from diverse backgrounds. This includes many people who are from other countries and have either moved to Japan early in their life or were born and raised here and identify Japan as their true home. There was a great article published about his work on CNNgo just a few days after ours entitled “Will there ever be a rainbow Japan?”

At the end of November, we went and filmed Ed at a day long event he put on with his community. Lara, Marcia and I boarded an overnight bus from Tokyo along with David Yano, his brother’s band Genez, and a MC Beto and headed to Kobe-where Ed is based. The event was a afternoon workshop held at the Kobe Center for Overseas Migration and Cultural Interaction-where Japanese citizens were trained before they were shipped off to work in Brazil and Peru. We won’t lie we were a bit exhausted from the lack of sleep but as soon as the day kicked off, we were in production mode. Here’s a photo recap of the day. Photos courtesy of Ryu Kodama.

And were off to Kobe! Overnight bus departing from Tokyo

Megumi and Lara "sleeping" 😉

Team Hafu ready for action. Props to Sara our trusty right-hand woman!

Ed (gray turtleneck) breaking the ice with the participants. David included.

Every got down and dirty writing songs together.

Song presentation time!

David performing a ballad number

MC Beto and his sisters perform!

Lara filming Genez

Marcia presenting the Hafu Project.

The workshop concluded with a discussion/symposium on the growing diversity in Japan.

Ed sharing his personal views on the term "mixed roots"