Con-Eventional Sidetracks are recaps of events from the author’s perspective, BUT.
It does not include the full experience of all days at the event. D:
A Sign from the Stand
The MyCar transport stops before the towering arches of Taylor University’s Lakeside Campus, with a very college-esque atmosphere all around.
Coupled with the nearby sign that gives first time visitors an idea of which One Direction to travel towards.
As all around the campus outskirts lies concrete flooring all over the place, students minding their own business of strolling around and…of course, this being the famous Lakeside Campus of Taylor-made graduates,
Would you lake at that look…wait a sec, that didn’t came out right.
Anyways, would you look at that lake!
And the absurd lack of people swimming, fishing, or doing something with it.
Not even a Jojo reference! D:
Under the sky’s near evening lighting, the walkway where the earlier sign pointed towards brings visitors into an alley of event booths from the entrance.
To the right, food booths for various Japanese snacks with their prices listed awaited visitors to check them out, its edible appearance making a tempting argument to grab dinner here.
To the left, came a variety of booths, but most notably ones that involve people participating in its activities.
Including, the Bondlingo booth for learning how to speak Japanese.
That comes with a…virtual idol thing to tag along. 👀
And a VR booth from a group called, Accenture, that puts players into this weird discount cyberpunk setting of managing a city’s stuff.
…that’s entertaining, but does get a bit heavy on the head. @.@
Man, VR tech’s got some ways to go.
…hang on a sec, where’s the stage even?
Somewhere above, the echo of microphones being voiced over could be heard.
A time for plan,
Follow The Mic
Scale up the nearby staircase, and the open sprawl of the Taylors Lakeside Campus opens up, with opened space all over for students passing by to glance over the event staff setting up some minor last minute decorations for Aki Fest.
Nearby, the event Emcees were busy getting things underway, as punctuality seems to still be a part of the event’s objective.
Even if it did got Malaysian Timing-ed slightly.
Two red shirt youths came up to the front, introducing themselves as the event chairpersons for Aki Fest 2019, as they presented their by the numbers speech to get the event’s show on the road.
Which starts things off with a crew of folks rolling out some drums onto the open area, as they…uh…
No, they’re not playing dead, it’s part of the routine.
With rhythmic rumbles, the drum beats carry this distinct melody that makes it severely different from the regular drums you’d usually hear during Chinese New Year.
At one point, the drum crew split off to form a circle around a solo drummer, and eventually close out their show with a rapid formation shift, with some members switching roles to carry the band’s instruments.
This is some live action “I’m the carry now,” stuff right here. 🤔
Up next, comes a 6 person team of kimono wearing dancers, that includes one of the emcees surprisingly, the third in a row. (See Tanabata & Nowadays for context.)
Dubbed as one of the dances people can expect to see at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, it’s rather cool to behold a cultural dance that would become mainstream television content in the near future.
Last but not least, an address by the representative from the Japan Embassy of Malaysia.
With notable parts of his speech that includes mentioning how there’s been an increase of Japanese students studying in Malaysia, that serves as a positive thing.
Which is, in the context of 2019, kind of assuring to hear. 🤔
Among the various sights that’s worth noting over at Aki Fest’s upper balcony of booths, comes a Calligraphy booth that explores the tricky art of writing with a brush, and black ink.
That smells of fragrance or bile, depending on your nose tastes.
Which brings back memories of middle school, where certain schools made this compulsory as part of a certain language’s syllabus. 🤔
Still though, definitely a worthy sight at a cultural even-…
Ah, Smash Bros Ultimate, the other part of Japanese culture.
…okay not really, but at least Aki Fest acknowledges that some youths might opt for some modern stuff to go with traditional activities.
Which lasts deep into the night.
Well Smash is challenging to pilot, this ain’t no Hulk spin-off that’s for sure.
What is probably less challenging to pilot is the booth for Shateki, that involves doing one’s best 44 Magnum impression.
The twist being it’s made of wood!
And no one wood see it coming.
Meanwhile, near the stage area that’s starting to line up tables for some strange reason, comes a water balloon ball pit of…uh…wait what do they call this activity again?
They did it at AMG too! D:
Oh right, it’s called Yo-Yo Tsuri, which makes some sense given that fishing balloons does make it kind of…rebound-ey?
Kind of like a Yo-Yo.
Oh, so that’s what those tables are for, the Sushi eating contest.
Probably the best response from participants of this fine contest, would be “We’re here for the free dinner,”
That comes with some Green spice that makes everything nice.
Enter Stage Stairs
At the risk of sounding like this is the ‘Aki Fest Stage’ from a videogame, the nearby carpeted lecture theater is where the night time concert would take place.
…well thanks piece of paper pinned on this wall, this explains where the audience needs to go. 🤔
With a surprisingly fancy stairwell for audiences to walk up towards the concert venue. o.o
As a nearby note stood brought with it more instructions.
Look paper, people know da Wae, you said it the first time!
Or a Lecture Theater, to be exact, only with college lessons replaced by band performances that really light up this cinema-esque setting.
It’s dark, though the difference here is that you can probably record stuff without jeopardizing your entire country from ever receiving such things again.
The first act begins warming up, as folks all over this pitch black cinema-esque setting await the night to start rocking out.
Coupled with…oh goddammit.
Lighting, the camera’s immortal enemy. 🤔🤔🤔
Act 1: The Compensator
Oh, it’s no wonder people haven’t seen these folks Nowadays, it’s because their previous gig was in 2018.
But returning to action at Aki Fest 2019, comes an act that isn’t compensating for anything.
You can hear their voices and instruments in the photos. 👀
It’s THAT hauntingly memorable. o.o
Act 1.5: Intermission Giveaway
Huh, wonder if the Emcees still have a role to pla-, oh there they are.
Apart from announcing the night concert’s next act, comes a brief intermission where the audience folk are invited to play some minigames.
In exchange for coupons of…o deer…
Haram Ramen. ._.
…well this complicates things. 🤔
Not too much, but at least the audience is being a good sport about it.
Act 2: Rina-Hime Band
Guitar sounds streak about, as two guitarists set about playing some warming up strums whilst awaiting this next act of a familiar name that…brought a band along today.
Breaking off from the drum set the pair were stepping on earlier, comes a…hey wait a sec.
Uh…wait, where’s the person the band is sort of named after?
Oh there she is!
Leaping into action onto the standing mic, as she calls on the audience to
Jojo reference stand up for the show.
Surrounded by the power of green lighting all around her band mates.
But, this is not all they have to show.
As the Rina-Hime band offers a sneak peek into the next act of the night, with a crossover of the next band to follow. 👀
Even a phone camera wants to…watch the performance. o.o
In this occasionally shadowy ice cool hall, where lighting becomes a cameraman’s worst enemy, only one band comes with a Brightburn idea.
Nothing brightens up the night more effectively than this.
After all, it’s been at least 1 week since the Area 51 raid.
So of course, someone’s gotta perform the Anime Opening for Area 51, under the cover of the night’s Silhouette.
With some Naruto runners in the literal house. 👀
School Night’s Out
As the night concert of Aki Fest Day 1 closes, some folks look to head back early before the weekend’s pool of other events take place.
Whereas some stand around and wonder.
…if only school nights were this fun.
Then maybe kids might be more interested to actually attend school. 🤔
Thank you so much for reading!
If possible, I’d love to hear your feedback on what can we do better.
Be it the bad writing, horrible pictures, or just the fact I need more water, I’d love to hear about it.
Check out more stories over at S.I.R House, of Content 2019.
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