Contemporary Music and Art in Japan

Ref: 10003268


All students studying BSc Audio Recording Technology, BA Creative Music Technology and BA Music Technology and Performance are eligible to participate in this opportunity. Students who will be in their second and third year in academic year 2019-20 studying BSc Music Technology and first year of BA/BSc Music Technology and BSc Digital Music Technology are also eligible to join this trip.  The maximum number of places on this opportunity is 30 and the minimum the trip will go ahead with is 10. DMU staff will be accompanying the group.

DMU students are only eligible to receive one academic-led trip bursary per year. Please check our eligibility criteria for further details.


As part of this trip, Music and Audio students will experience contemporary Japanese music, art, youth culture, and music/audio technology in Tokyo. Activities will include attendance at live music events by Japanese artists, visits to contemporary art galleries such as the National Gallery of Modern Art, Mirai-kan (‘Future Building’), NHK Broadcasting Museum, visits to cultural areas such as Harajuku and Shinjuku, a visit to Studio Ghibli museum, a visit to a Japanese karaoke bar, a visit to Tokyo Hackerspace, viewing/interaction with digital art installations, and more.

At present, it is planned to visit an arts college in Japan, and experiment with recording traditional Japanese musical instruments, but this will depend on staff availability at the Japanese university. Provided that there are events occurring at the time of travel, there may be the chance to attend an Algorave.

As part of the trip we will record various ‘found sounds’ and images in Japan. Upon return we will use online/networked collaborative techniques to build a piece of audio/visual art from these resources.

Cultural activities

Participation in Japanese culture will be encouraged through activities such as karaoke at a karaoke bar (typically including both Japanese and western music of a variety of styles even unto Death Metal), meals in traditional and modern Japanese restaurants. We will visit areas focussing on Japanese youth culture such as Shinjuku and Harajuku. While our focus will primarily be on music culture and technology, there will also be ample opportunity to experience other cultures such as anima, manga, and other distinctive aspects of modern Japanese arts and culture

Additional activities and opportunities for free time include visits to Buddhist shrines and temple complexes, attendance at English language stand-up comedy typically by long term residents. Visits to Japanese parks and national buildings such as the Imperial Palace grounds, Yoyogi Park, and more. We will be staying in Asakusa which is a major focus of tourism in Tokyo and which is well served with tourist advisory centres. If students participating in this trip are interested in additional activities such as Taiko (Japanese drumming) lessons, these can be arranged at additional cost if the trip lead is contacted well ahead of departure.

Travel and accommodation

  • Travel – Students are required to independently book their travel.
  • Accommodation – The faculty will book accommodation for this opportunity, and students will be expected to pay the full amount following confirmation of their place.

Contact details

Visa information

If you have a British Citizen or British National (Overseas) or EU passport, you can enter Japan as a visitor for up to 90 days without a visa. You may need to provide evidence of a return or onward ticket. Students of other nationalities should check the entry requirements on the Japanese Embassy website.

Further information will be provided to all accepted students who require a visa, regarding the type of visa required and how to apply for it, at the pre-departure session. If you have any specific questions about this please email for advice. If a visa is required, you are responsible for applying for one and ensuring that you do so with sufficient time to receive the visa prior to departure. Please be aware that immigration decisions are made by individual embassies.

Key Information

  • Departure date: Saturday 22 February 2020
  • Return date: Sunday 1 March 2020
  • Estimated cost of flights and accommodation: £1000
  • Students will also be required to pay for: UK and in-country transfers, food and drink, cultural activities (£50), and visa (if applicable)
  • #DMUglobal bursary: £400
  • Deadline for application: Monday 21 October 2019 9am