Kamuy Lumina Brings Ainu Legend to Life in Forests Around Lake Akan

Press Release (ePRNews.com) - HOKKAIDO, Japan - Jun 12, 2019 - ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Akan Adventure Tourism is pleased to announce the opening of a new outdoor multimedia experience: “KAMUY LUMINA, an Enchanted Night Walk at Lake Akan,” created by Moment Factory, a world-leading multimedia entertainment company based in Montreal, Canada. Opening July 5, KAMUY LUMINA will offer visitors to Japan’s northernmost prefecture an immersive experience combining the rich natural beauty of the area with the culture of Hokkaido’s indigenous people, the Ainu.

This highly anticipated digital art experience is inspired by the Ainu legend “Konkuwa,” which has been passed down in the form of a song said to have been sung by the Owl God. The Ainu consider the owl a nocturnal protector that wakes at night to watch over villages from the trees. Kamuy Lumina, a collaboration between Moment Factory and the people of Lake Akan, is designed to introduce visitors of all ages and nationalities to the Ainu philosophy of respect for and coexistence with nature in an unforgettable hands-on experience. 

Kamuy Lumina uses projection mapping, scenography and other cutting-edge digital technology to bring animals, such as birds and deer to life within the woods, and special effects and interactive features showcase the unique geography and sights of Lake Akan. The guests themselves play a leading role in the story, walking through the twilight woods as the immersive narrative draws them in. 

Kamuy Lumina is the 10th and latest project in the “Lumina Night Walk” series created by Moment Factory. Each Lumina Night Walk is a unique interactive multimedia experience inspired by the local culture and natural beauty of its host region. Kamuy Lumina is especially unique in that it will be the first experience in the series staged in a national park. 

The island of Hokkaido is located hundreds of miles north of Tokyo and boasts natural and cultural riches not found anywhere else in Japan. Lake Akan is located in the western region of Hokkaido’s Akan-Mashu National Park, renowned for its pristine caldera lakes, ancient forests and hot springs. Kamuy Lumina turns the woods around the lake into an otherworldly realm. Lights, soundscape, video content and interactive features create an entirely new kind of outdoor digital art experience, combining natural beauty with the Ainu legend.

In partnership with the Ministry of the Environment, the Forestry Agency and the Maeda Ippoen Foundation, the environmental impact assessments for the project have been conducted to ensure that no harm was done to the national park. Part of the proceeds from the attraction will be used for environmental preservation activities around Lake Akan, as well as Ainu cultural revitalization efforts.

The Ainu indigenous people in Hokkaido, with their own language and customs, have a long storytelling tradition and a philosophy of harmonious coexistence with nature. The Ainu believe that “Kamuy” (divine spirits or gods) can be found in their surroundings, manifesting animals, plants, fire, water and wind. 

It is hoped that this new type of immersive experience will pave the way for an increased awareness of the importance of nature in line with the philosophy of the Ainu.

■ Details about KAMUY LUMINA

 The Story  – The Kamuy are angry and have stopped sending deer and fish for the hunters because humans have forgotten their respect for the land. But the Owl and the Jay Bird are determined to give the humans a second chance by traveling to the land of the Kamuy and delivering a musical message on their behalf. There’s just one problem. The Jay Bird may have the most beautiful voice in the forest, but he can’t follow a beat! He needs your help to keep the rhythm. Join him on his journey, and you might even return with the wisdom to bring the animals back to the forest!

Date:  July 5 to November 10, 2019  * Closed during the winter period. The next season will be from late May through early November.

Hours:  Tours start 30 minutes after sunset. Last admission at 10:30 pm.   *Start times vary according to the sunset.

Venue:  Bokke Nature Trail in Akan-Mashu National Park​

Duration:  50–60 minutes (approx. 1.2 km / 0.75 mile walk)

Operating company:  Akan Adventure Tourism Corp.

Admission

Advance-purchase ticket:  Adults ¥2,700 | Children aged 6-12 ¥1,350 ​

Same-day ticket:  Adults ¥3,000 | Children aged 6-12 ¥1,500  

* Children aged 5 and under – Free

Where to Purchase Tickets

Advance tickets can be purchased online at the Kamuy Lumina website. ​Tickets will also be available at the Kamuy Lumina ticket booth and at hotel front desks in the Akanko Onsen area after July 5.

For more information, please visit the official website for Kamuy Lumina.

■ Another Must-See Attraction to Explore Ainu Culture at Akanko Onsen Area

“LOST KAMUY: An Ancient Ainu Epic Story”

– Digital Art Meets Ancient Ceremonial Dance – Daily performance at the Lake Akan Ainu Theater –

Telling the story of the Ainu relationship with the native Ezo wolf, “Lost Kamuy: An Ancient Ainu Epic Story” blends traditional Ainu dance with contemporary dance, 3D computer graphics from at least five projectors that bring the stage to life. This stunning performance will give audiences a window into Japan’s indigenous Ainu culture — in particular, the Ainu’s love and respect for nature, which is at the heart of their way of life, as well as their song and dance traditions.

For more information, please refer to the press release and the official website for Lost Kamuy.  

About the Ainu and the Lake Akan Area

The Lake Akan area is located in eastern Hokkaido’s Akan-Mashu National Park, which is surrounded by exceptional nature and untouched wilderness. The area is also a well-known hot spring resort and a paradise for nature lovers and adventure tourists, so visitors can enjoy both hot spring spas and open-air baths with a wonderful view, as well as outdoor activities such as trekking, fishing, canoeing, wildlife viewing, skiing and snowshoeing. The area is home to the largest Ainu settlement in Hokkaido, with approximately 120 people. This area contains Lake Akan Ainu Theater “Ikor” and the Ainu Living Memorial Hall, where visitors can learn about traditional Ainu culture. There are also many traditional craft and souvenir shops, as well as restaurants serving Hokkaido and Ainu cuisine.

■ About Moment Factory

Moment Factory is a multimedia studio with a full range of production expertise under one roof. Its team combines specializations in video, lighting, architecture, sound and special effects to create remarkable experiences. Based in Montreal, the studio also has offices in Los Angeles, London, New York City, Paris and Tokyo. Since its inception in 2001, Moment Factory has created more than 400 unique shows and attractions, including the “Lumina Night Walks” series. Its productions span the globe, and its clients include Los Angeles Airport, Microsoft, Namie Amuro, Sony, Toyota, the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, Muse, and Royal Caribbean. 

■ About Akan Adventure Tourism

Akan Adventure Tourism was established in April 2018 to create, promote and market activities that target Japanese and overseas tourists in the adventure tourism* segment, with the goal of attracting overnight visitors to the world-class natural resources of Lake Akan and its surroundings. The company aims to help Akanko Onsen reach its full potential by creating and maintaining business models, increasing employment and population, and creating resources for independent destination marketing organizations (DMO).

MEDIA CONTACT:

Sachi Maruo | Rika Konno, Solaris Space, Ltd.

Email: lake-akan@solarispace.com

Source : Akan Adventure Tourism Corp.

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