"一口气,从雅典横渡到北京/让每一个人都拥有世界级的竞技舞台。/中国网通,以先进的宽带技术,构建通达世界的通信网络,全力支持北京2008年奥运会。/中国网 宽天下"

"In one breath, from Athens to Beijing/Let everyone have a global competition stage./China Unicom, thanks to an advanced broadband technology, creates a world communication network, and fully supports Beijing 2008 Olympics./China network broadens the Tianxia"
(China Unicom corporate advertisement)

"In un respiro, da Atene a Pechino/In modo che tutti possano stare su un palcoscenico mondiale./China Unicom, grazie ad un'avanzata tecnologia broadband, crea una rete di comunicazione globale e supporta le Olimpiadi di Pechino 2008./China Unicom amplia il Tianxia"
(pubblicità corporate di China Unicom)


China Adtalks: Advertising to Children and Young People in China

I am happy to share with you the programme of this event I organised for next week!

The one day workshop is called "China Adtalks: Advertising to Children and Young People in China" and will provide useful insights into Chinese advertising, with a specific focus on children and young people.


10.00-10.10 Welcome
Dr. Peter Lunt, Professor, School of Media, Communication and Sociology, University of Leicester
Dr. Giovanna Puppin, Lecturer, School of Media, Communication and Sociology, University of Leicester

10.10-10.45 “Small Things of Great Importance: Toy Advertising in Republican China" 
Dr. Valentina Boretti, Research Associate, Department of History, SOAS University of London

10.45-11.20 (Re)nationalising Consumerism: ‘I Am a New National Product” (wo shi xin guohuo 我是新国货) Ad Campaign as a Case Study
Dr. Giovanna Puppin, Lecturer, School of Media, Communication and Sociology, University of Leicester

11.20-11.35 Coffee Break

11.35-12.10 “How Chinese Millenials Are Revolutionising Consumerism in China”
Ms. Felicia Schwartz, Founder and Director, China Insight

12.10-12.45 Banking Ads and Promotional Strategies Appealing to Adolescents in China”
Dr. Kara Chan, Professor, Department of Communication Studies, Hong Kong Baptist University

12.45-13.00 Joint Q&A Session and Concluding Remarks
Dr. Giovanna Puppin, Lecturer, School of Media, Communication and Sociology, University of Leicester

Well... save the date!


New Publication: Media and Religion in China

I am honoured to share with you a wonderful piece of news! The volume Religion and Media in China: Insights and Case Studies from the Mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong, edited by Stefania Travagnin (University of Groningen), has finally been published for Routledge!

The table of contents can be found here.

It was a real pleasure for me to work with such a great variety of scholars who engage, in aninterdisciplinary way, with different topics ranging across Area Studies (Chinese Studies), Media and Communication Studies, as well as Religion Studies.

In this occasion, I contributed with a book chapter entitled: "The Master Said, the Master Sold? Uses and Misuses of the Confucius Icon in Chinese Commercial Advertising". The chapter is available through my Academia and Researchgate profile.

The initial findings of the research I conducted for this study were presented in a paper entitled "The Master Said, the Master Sold: Representations of Confucius in Chinese Advertising", delivered at the conference of the International Society for Media, Religion and Culture University of Kent (Canterbury, 4-6 August 2014).

Last year, I delivered a presentation at the University of Perugia, invited by prof. Ester Bianchi and the FiSSUF (Department of Philosophy, Social and Human Sciences and Education).


Understanding the Chinese Consumers - a Taster

This year, the second edition of the Leicester Business Festival took place from 24 October to 4 November.

I had the honour to be invited by Sarah Harrison, Leicester City Centre Director at the Leicester City Council, to  present a session entitled "Understanding the Chinese Consumers - a Taster", for the Hospitality and Tourism sector. Clare Hudson, from the University RED (Research and Enterprise Division) played a crucial role in facilitating our initial conversations.

The event sold out very quickly. In one of the meeting rooms located at the third floor of Highcross (the biggest Shopping Centre in Leicester), some of the major local business owners and members of the general public encountered their new customers: the Chinese students. 

The session began with an overview of why it is important to talk about this topic right here, right now. 

The city of Leicester is home to two prestigious universities: the University of Leicester and DeMontfort University. China is the  top sending country in terms of international students to the UK (according to the HESA). The University of Leicester (only) hosts 2,127 students, who are currently enrolled for the academic year 2016/2017. 

A simple stroll down to the city centre is sufficient to realise this growing presence, despite the Chinese students still constitute a sort of an "enigma" for the city. At the same time, as it appeared from the initial findings of some informal conversations with the Chinese students/consumers in Leicester, the city is still not communicating itself well enough. 

This lack of communication (and consequently knowledge) between the Chinese students and the businesses in the city explains why the event was so important and successful: now more than ever, Leicester-based shops and retailers are curious and eager to get to know better China (first and foremost) and the Chinese young generations. 

A feedback form was distributed among participants, with the objective of understanding more in-depth their needs and offering appropriate support and consultancy as part of our enterprise activities.

This Taster intends to be the first of a series of events, that aim at facilitating this process of communication, promotion and integration.

The event was supported by the University of Leicester and also by Chisra (China Studies Research Alliance).

Waiting for everybody to grab a seat!

 Introducing myself and getting started with the Taster

Who are the "new" Chinese consumers and what do they want?

With my PhD student, Dian (Wendy) Wang during the Q&A session

Our audience


Event announcement

Perspectives on Chinese Happiness:
A two-day event at the University of Westminster

29-30 June 2016 The Pavilion, 115 New Cavendish StreetLondon W1W 6UW


9:00–9:30 Registration and Coffee

9:30 Welcome (Gerda Wielander)

9:45–10:45 Meeting each other and discovering who is here

10:45–12:00 Playback Theatre on “why we are interested in Chinese Happiness”

12:00–13:00 Lunch

13–17 Academic Papers

13:00-13:30 Gerda Wielander
Happiness in Chinese socialist discourse – Ah Q and the “visible hand”

13:30-14:00 Derek Hird
Smile yourself happy: the spread of zheng nengliang (“positive energy”) in contemporary China

14:00-14.30 Giovanna Puppin
Moments of "Happy Chinese Taste": a Critical Interpretive Analysis of CCTV 2014 Spring Festival Gala's Public Service Announcement (PSA) “Chopsticks” (Kuaizi pian 筷子篇)

14:30–14:45 Coffee Break

14:45–15:15 Yang Jie
“Happy Housewives”: Gender, Class, and Psychological Self-Help in China

15:15–15:45 Will Schroeder
Potentially Happy: Queer Chinese Views on Finding Emotional Satisfaction

15:45-15:55 Comfort Break

15:55–16:25 Elisabeth Engetbretsen
Negotiating ‘familial happiness’ in parents’ support-narratives for LGBTQ children: Popo Fan’s Mama Rainbow and Pink Dads

16:25–16:55 Heather Inwood
The Happiness of Unrealisable Dreams: On the Pursuit of Pleasure in Contemporary Chinese Popular Fiction

16:55–17:00 Closure to first day

18:00 Conference Dinner for Speakers, True Heart, Film Crew and invited guests



9:15–9:30 Arrival and Coffee

9:30–9.50 Welcome to new participants

9.50–11:00 Playback Theatre on “Recalling yesterday’s presentations, and what does it mean for you?”

11:00–11:15 Tea

11:15-12:45 Break-out Group Discussions on the following suggested topics
Happiness and cultural identity
Socialist and post-socialist happiness
Online Dreams of happiness – reality or fiction
Happiness and non-normative sexuality

12:45–13:45 Lunch

13:45–15:15 Group Discussions continued

15:15–15:35 Coffee

15:35–16:35 Playback Theatre on “Sharing last thoughts, feelings and insights”

16:35–17:00 Concluding Remarks and Farewells


The notorious Qiaobi: behind the scenes of an “ad controversy” foretold?

Written by Giovanna Puppin for UoN Blogs / China Policy Institute Blog

In the last two weeks or so, nothing seemed to spark more online controversy than the Chinese Qiaobi 俏比 ad, which was reportedly screened on China’s TV stations and before movies in Wanda cinemas earlier in May. The commercial began to draw extensive attention starting from 26th May, when it was spotted by the online publication Shanghaiist, and then uploaded on Youtube, where it hit 2 million views in just one day. And this happened not for its positive qualities: BuzzFeed was the first to “honour” it with the title of “the most racist ad of 2016”.
The ad story was soon covered by international media sites – including BBCCNNAl Jazeera – and commented on by netizens all over the world, also through reaction videos. As a result, the debate also took off on Chinese social media: the notorious Qiaobi ad –redubbed as “the most racist ad ever” – not only was under the world’s scrutiny, but it was also being read as a mirror of racism in the country (in a political way). On 27 May, Mr. Wang – a representative of the company that owns the brand – said that the ad actually never intended to promote racial discrimination, and that foreign media were possibly being too sensitive about it. The following day, though, the company formally apologised with a Chinese-language statement published on the brand’s Weibo account, which caused another wave of indignation.
(Source: Youtube/ Qiaobi)
The 50-second ad opens on a young Chinese woman loading her top-load washing machine, while a cheerful accordion tune is played in the background; some laundry liquid detergent and colourful boxes are displayed behind her (the brand names have been deliberately blurred). A young black man passes by her flat; when he sees her, he stops at the entrance and starts winking and whistling at her from a distance. Because his face and t-shirt are covered with paint (moreover, he is also holding a brush and a can of paint) it is logical to assume that he has been decorating the interior of a flat (or, less probably, hers). She invites him to come nearer – a move that he visibly appreciates – suggesting an imminent seduction, but just as they are about to exchange a kiss, she places something that looks like a green mint candy in his mouth. Immediately, but less gracefully, she shoves him into the washing machine: then she sits on it and waits.
At this point, the music stops: the sound of the man screaming is clearly discernible from the background noise of the washing machine spinning. On the visual code, the advertised product is revealed: Qiaobi laundry gel balls (contained in the colorful boxes depicted before). Once the spinning cycle is over, the Chinese woman opens the washing machine and a young Chinese man emerges from the drum, in front of her astonished – yet pleased – eyes, and to an energetic, gripping tune. The Chinese man is wearing a flawless, clean white t-shirt, and he hands back the detergent ball she had placed into the black man’s mouth (which we now recognise as the advertised product). He winks at her, and, in doing so, a cartoon-style sparkle magically appears. The last scene of the ad depicts the packaging and the product, and a cartoon-style animated dolphin – the pictogram of Qiaobi’s logo. The pay-off: “Change starts from Qiaobi” (gaibian cong Qiaobi kaishi 改变从俏比开始) appears on the screen, and a slightly altered version is announced by the voice-over: “Change is just a Qiaobi laundry gel ball” (gaibian zhishi yike Qiaobi xiyi rongzhu 改变只是一颗俏比洗衣溶珠). The closing shot shows the national hotline number to call for further information.
574708aa1600002a00f948a2(Source: Youtube/ Qiaobi)
When I first watched the commercial I immediately recognised it as very similar to – yet different from – two previous ad campaigns for the machine fabric dyes by Coloreria Italiana, namely: “Coloured is Better: What Women Want” (2006) and “Coloured is Better: la Vendetta” (2007). As Mr. Aldo Biasi – the president of the advertising agency – explained to me in a telephone interview, these ads were originally circulated on some minor Italian websites on Women’s Day. The creative idea of transforming a scrawny white husband into a buff black man made an explicit use of race-based sexual stereotypes and had a deliberate ironic intent. In Mr. Biasi’s opinion, this is not the case of the Chinese ad, which he described as “a blatant ripoff with an offensive twist”. The Qiaobi ad not only follows the same storyline but, for the first half, even uses the same background copyrighted music (including the diegetic screaming sound!): this makes it quite difficult to believe that neither the company nor the creative team had never seen the original ads before, as they claimed. The company’s official statement makes no reference to the ripoff, but some Weibo-users pointed their fingers at its reprehensible, careless attitude in blatantly copying another campaign, and even expressed skepticism towards the “professionalism” of the team who created and produced the ad. These are important details that need to be contextualised in the light of China’s official discourse on developing creative advertising, that is being promoted by the authorities to boost a national creative industry and improve the qualitative standards of advertising – also through a new system of professional accreditation.
The main substantive difference compared with the Italian ads is that the reversal of the racial transmogrification- from a black (African) man to a fair-skinned (Chinese) man. This is precisely the aggravating factor that fuelled the allegations of racism and fury online, mainly outside China. Some viewers recognised in the Qiaobi ad the distinctive features of commodity racism, a “creative strategy” that is nothing new in the West – as the infamous campaigns for Pears’ Soap in 19th Century England demonstrate.
In China though, as explained by Prof. Liu Junhai, racial sensitivity among advertisers and the public is lower than in Western countries. This race-related ad controversy is unprecedented in the country, and the rather banal reason is that the Chinese advertising world is characterised by the almost exclusive portrayal of the Han 汉 people (even though the Qiaobi ad is not the first to depict a black person).
_89815080_fe320aaa-1a86-43bc-8c7b-d34450dc34bd(Source: Youtube/ Qiaobi)
Interestingly, the black man doesn’t appear in the short version of the ad: the “innocuous” version depicting only the Chinese man and the product (unfortunately now unavailable) is actually the one that was screened on China’s satellite TV stations. The longer version gained attention when the independent photographer Benoit Florençon uploaded it on Youtube. In the light of the Chinese government’s recent campaign to clean up e-commerce and online ads (also as a response to the Wei Zexi incident), it might seem surprising that the ad was not stopped earlier.
Apparently, on 5th March this year, the brand’s Weibo account published the following soft-porn-sounding pre-campaign anticipation: “This is the story of a ‘love triangle’ between a black uncle, a little fresh meat, and a sexy goddess” (Zhe shi yi ge jiangshu hei shushu, xiao xianrou, xinggan nvshen de ‘sanjiao lian’ gushi 这是一个讲述黑叔叔、小鲜肉、性感女神的‘三角恋’故事). This teaser provides some useful clues for decoding how the protagonists have been typified (and stereotyped) in the ad. The three nicknames come from Internet slang and equally evoke some sexual connotations: hei shushu 黑叔叔 (literally: “black uncle”) is used in this context as “black daddy”; xiao xian rou 小鲜肉 indicates a young guy with fair skin and innocent looks; xinggan nüshen 性感女神 indicates a sexy woman who is beautiful and seductive.
The primary function of advertising, elementary as it sounds, is to persuade consumers to buy a certain product (or service). Nonetheless, this might be quite challenging for a relatively new, small start-up like the Shanghai-based Leishang Cosmetics Co., Ltd.: neither the company nor the Qiaobi brand are especially well known to Chinese consumers, as demonstrated by the basic questions on the product posted by prospective buyers on Baidu, the scarcity of content provided on the brand’s website, and the unimpressive number of followers of its Weibo account. As China’s laundry care market is characterized by mounting competition, the company decided to position itself through the launch of a new product: the laundry gel ball, promoted as “a healthy and trendy new experience” (jiankang shishang xin tiyan 健康时尚新体验), in contrast to traditional liquid detergents. The target audience consists of young consumers, who do their purchasing online. The word “change” (gaibian 改变) in the pay-off, therefore, should not be interpreted exclusively as linked to the racial transmogrification, but also to the new product and washing habits of the Chinese. Needless to say, the end of breaking through the market doesn’t justify the means. However, it constitutes another detail that needs to be taken into account.
Giovanna Puppin is Lecturer and Programme Director of the MA Media and Advertising, Department of Media and Communication, University of Leicester. She researches Chinese advertising and promotional culture, with a focus on issues of representation, identity, and power. Picture and video: Youtube/Qiaobi.


Guess who's back?

Hi all, 
after some months of absolute silence, here I am again!
Many things happened in the previous months, and I am glad to announce my new position as Lecturer in International Promotional Cultures at Middlesex University, London. 
Despite the silence, I have actually been collecting materials in order to upload new posts and keep the content of the blog up-to-date... there could be some changes in the blog, but not in the immediate future - let's see!
I would like to share with you another piece of news: the review "2008: The 'Long March' of Chinese Brands" will be screened in London, University of Westminster, at the Contemporary China Centre tonight, at 6 pm. The review was created and screened last year at the Ca' Foscari Short Film Festival and also during the Communication Week in Milan. Therefore, it is the first time in is screened outside Italy!!!

Check out the link:

Hopefully I will be more constant with posting,
I will try to keep up my word,


CTR Report on CHINA'S ADSPEND in traditional media (2012)

Good morning, all! As I am writing a brief on Chinese advertising industry, I thought it was interesting to share with you this link:
Buongiorno a tutti! Sto scrivendo un brief sull'industria pubblicitaria in Cina e ho pensato di condividere con voi questo link interessante:

It is the latest report from CTE on China's Advertising Spend in 2012... I copy and paste it here. Briefly: in 2012 the traditional advertising annual growth was 4.5% (the lowest in the last five years). The top 5 industries to invest more were toiletries, business & services, beverages, foodstuff and pharmaceuticals. The TOP10 advertising spenders in 2012 were L’Oreal, KFC, Olay, Wahaha, Yili, China Mobile, JDB, Dali, McDonald’s and Master Kong. 
Si tratta dell'ultima ricerca, condotta da CTR, sulla spesa pubblicitaria nel 2012...copio e incollo. In sintesi: la spesa pubblicitaria cinese nei media tradizionali l'anno scorso ha visto un aumento del 4.5% (il più basso degli ultimi 5 anni). La televisione continua ad essere il medium con la spesa pubblicitaria più alta. I 5 settori che investono di più in pubblicità sono: igiene, business & servizi, bevande, alimentare e farmaceutico. I brand più "spendaccioni" sono: L’Oreal, KFC, Olay, Wahaha, Yili, China Mobile, JDB, Dali, McDonald’s e Master Kong.

China’s traditional media advertising market growth dropped below “5” in 2012
January 31, 2013 Beijing, China

The GDP growth rate in 2012 was 7.8%. This is the first time for the annual GDP growth rate lower than 8% since 1999, and the annual growth rate becomes the lowest since 1998. According to the latest CTR publication on China adspend data, traditional advertising annual growth in China market 2012 was 4.5% only, which was the lowest in the recent 5 years. With the influence from economic environment, the forecast on China advertising market depression in the beginning of 2012 came true eventually at the year-end.

Advertising expenditure-Media

TV media keeps its advantage on traditional media in 2012. Its advertising overwhelmed with large share steadily. The adspend had 6.4% growth over last year, whereas CCTV cut down 8.9% of advertising duration, comparing with last year. Its rate card expenditure indicated 1% of slight decline accordingly. Provincial satellite TV only reduced 2.1%, yet its rate card expenditure showed 16% of annual growth. The largest deduction for provincial terrestrial channels was 11%. On the contrary, its adspend continued climbing to 5.8% annual growth.

By political influence, the advertising capacity in TV drama from various channels dropped substantially. At the same time, it enhanced the growth of the advertising capacity in News/Current affair programs.

Radio continued leading the traditional media with 8.9% annual growth, but it appeared to sag sharply after 27.8% of accelerating growth last year. Under the economic environment and the shrinking consumption in automobile, there was an adjustment on the adspend of Business & Service and Automobiles. As the key industries in radio advertising, their adspends directly affected the entire radio advertising growth. The consecutive development in radio advertising resource should be attentive. It reduced 12.8% yearly in 2012 after the growth in previous years.

With the influence from 17.2% advertising resource reduction and the advertising depression in Real Estate, Business & Service and Automobiles, Newspaper rate card adspend fell 7.5% over last year. In Top 10 ranking on newspaper advertising, only pharmaceuticals and personal items were growing. The industries which had the fastest magazine advertising growth were Personal items (31.0%), Computer and Office Automation Products (14.7%) and Alcohol (66.2%). Eager advertising from these industries keeps building the elegant image in magazine.

The advertising growth in traditional outdoor media was exhausting, with 2.0% growth over 2011. With the rapid development of the urban railway system in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, Metro and light railway advertising showed high growth with 13.2% annual increase rate over 2011.

Although the result in new media varies in the whole 2012, its entire growth slowed down. Public transport TV and LCD building adspends were 2.2% and 14.8% respectively. Fast-food restaurant brands like the leading brand KFC still have the passion on new media advertising. On the other hand, some Internet brands like Shanghai Yi Supermarket, Alibaba Taobao and Zhenai were interested in new media advertising, while cosmetics/toiletries weaken their advertising on LCD building.

Advertising Expenditure-Industries

All industrial advertising in 2012 decelerated their growth, some of them even have negative growths. Only beverage and alcohol growths overtook 2011, by 12.4% and 31.9% respectively. Alcohol led the market contribution in all industries, by 33.0%. More and more alcohol brands began to concern on developing brand image, advertising become the first choice. 

Advertising Consumption-Brands

L’oreal became the top brand on traditional advertising with 24.5% growth. It was followed by KFC, which traditional advertising was slowed down, with 7.6% growth. McDonald grew 25.0% relatively in traditional advertising. These two Fast-food brands are competing intensely by different strategies. JDB was outstanding in 2012, from 7th position in Top 10 brands on traditional advertising and attractive growth (118.3%).

Editor’s note:Illustrations of the data background
1. Advertising aggregate in all years, mentioned in the report, is the absolute amount of the current year. The yearly growth is based on previous year.
2. The advertising expense is based on the media public price, excluding discount. 
3. Free Items are not included in the ad expense.
4. Monitoring Media includes: TV, Newspapers, magazines, radios, outdoor, metro etc.
5. The monitoring time on TV channel advertisements: 17:00—24:00



Here we go with the last post of this saga! I will now - very briefly - give space to some other countries, cultures and languages, some of which were actually present in the show, some of which were not.
Eccomi qui per l'ultimo post di questa saga! In velocità, vorrei dare spazio ad alcuni paesi, culture e lingue, alcuni dei quali hanno trovato spazio all'interno dello show, altri no.

Apart from Japan and Korea, Russia seemed to be the next outcoming cultural and linguistic power, at least as far as investment was concerned. Russia has still a long way to go in order to dismantle stereotypes: apart from the language tasters (where Russian was present in 2 out of 3) and one language intensive class (against 2 of Chinese but - incredibly - zero from both Japan and Korea!), Russia was the protagonist of two events: a music performance, held on Day 1, and a "language in action" seminar, entitled: "RUSSIA - DON'T BE AFRAID OF HER!", promoted as follows:
"Russia...the vast country with its language, society and culture where everything that you see happens for historical reasons...but what's Russia like today?With free traditional blins (pancakes), shortbreads and vodka".
Oltre al Giappone a alla Corea, la Russia sembrava essere il futuro potere culturale e linguistico, almeno in base agli investimenti fatti. Ma la Russia ha una lunga strada da percorrere per liberarsi dagli stereotipi: a parte gli assaggi linguistici (era presente in 2 su 3) e un corso intensivo di lingua (contro i due cinesi e gli "zero" del Giappone e della Corea"!) la Russia era la protagonista di due eventi: una performance musicale, il primo giorno, e un seminario "language in action", intitolato "RUSSIA - NON AVERE PAURA!", promosso come segue:
"Russia...il grande paese con la sua lingua, società e cultura, dove tutto ciò che vedi succede per ragioni storiche...ma com'è la Russia oggi?Con blini (pancake), shortbread e vodka locali". 

Among the other "exotic" languages, I was going to expect more from Hindi and Arabic.  Arabic was present in a linguistic taster and in 2 beginners courses, while hindi was the protagonist of only one language taster. No cultural events. And what about Italy? Well...it was protagonist of two intensive classes (on the second day), and of a taster (held on the last day!!!). No related events, be they related to culture, dance, food or whathever.
Tra le altre lingue "esotiche", mi sarei aspettata di più dall'hindi e dall'araboL'arabo ha promosso un assaggio linguistico e due corsi principianti, mentre l'hindi è stato protagonista di un assaggio linguistico. Nessun evento culturale. E l'Italia? Beh...ha promosso due lezioni intensive (il secondo giorno) e un assaggio linguistico (il primo giorno!!!) Nessun evento, nulla su cultura, danza, cibo o quant'altro. 

Another thing that stroke me? And, to be honest, not only me but also my friends? The total abscence of African languages...nothing at all. Not scheduled! Well, if the show had taken place in Italy I would expect so, but being in a city like London, not at all. A city that promotes a huge African Film Festival (I saw my first Nollywood movie there, Phone Swap, I thank A.J. for spreading the news!), fashion-related events (Africa Fashion Week), music festivals, like the London African Music Festival...
Un'altra cosa che mi ha stupito?A dire il vero non solo me, ma anche altri amici che hanno visitato lo show? La totale assenza di lingue africane...niente. Non contemplate! Ecco, se lo show si fosse tenuto in Italia me lo sarei aspettato, ma in una città come Londra, assolutamente no. Una città che promuove un grande African Film Festival (lì ho visto Phone Swap, il mio primo film di Nollywood e ringrazio A.J. per avermi allertato!), eventi di moda africana (Africa Fashion Week), festival di musica, come il London African Music Festival...

I had the pleasure to assist to the first episode of the Afrobeat Educational Roadshow, organised by Strictly Entertainment Music (SEM) and held at the University of Westminster, on December 12th, 2012 (see brochure above). I was glad to hear that the African country I find more interesting from a popular culture perspective is "going up": Nigeria is doing great not only in cinema, fashion and soccer, but also in AFROBEAT MUSIC, where the genre actually generated.
Ho avuto il piacere di assistere alla prima tappa dell'Afrobeat Educational Roadshow, organizzato da Strictly Entertainment Music (SEM) e tenutosi lo scorso 12 dicembre, presso l'Università di Westminster (vedi locandina sopra). Mi ha fatto molto piacere sentire che il paese africano che mi interessa di più in una prospettiva di cultura pop "sta salendo": la Nigeria sta andando alla grande nel cinema, nella moda e nel calcio, ma anche nella MUSICA AFROBEAT, dove questo genere è nato. 

Bracket ft. Wizkid, Girl 

And Nigerian artists are getting famous abroad, also through collaboration (think about Akon and P-Square and MayD in Chop My Money). Despite this, "Gangnam style" reached 1355307253 views, while the videos of OmawumiWizkid or Iyanya lag far behind (even though they are cooler from many other points of view... not by chance, D'Banj's Oliver Twist entered the UK TOP10). But these guys are getting big are reaching an international audience, which is not only the Nigerian diaspora. And making them dance along. Exactly what is China wants to do, without success. Time to chance the tune?
E gli artisti nigeriani stanno diventando famosi all'estero, anche attraverso collaborazioni (pensate ad Akon con i P-Square e MayD in Chop My Money). Nonostante questo, "Gangnam style" ha raggiunto 1355307253 visualizzazioni, mentre i video di Omawumi, Wizkid, Iyanya, ecc. sono ancora indietro (pur essendo cool da vari punti di vista...forse non è un caso se Oliver Twist di D'Banj è entrata nella UK TOP10). Ma questi ragazzi stanno diventando big e raggiungendo un audience internazionale, che non si limita solo alla diaspora nigeriana. E lo fanno ballare. Esattamente ciò che la Cina vorrebbe riuscire a fare, ma con scarso successo. Tempo di cambiare musica?