Message from the President
The Professional College of Arts and Tourism is the newest college in Japan, having opened in April this year (2021). Our college is based around tourism and the performing arts, and we are dedicated to entertaining people. We hope to help connect people around the world and contribute to world peace through tourism and art.
In Japanese, tourism is called kanko, a word consisting of the kanji characters for "watch" and "light". The origin of this term is the Chinese classic, Kuni-no-Hikari wo Miru (Watching the Light of the Land). However, there are few substances on earth that emit light on their own. Instead, the arts act as a beacon of light in society.
Human beings have a desire to see what they cannot see.
However, the world is becoming a smaller place, and information can now be obtained instantly via the Internet.
Gone are the days when tourism was merely sight-seeing. We are now able to see almost anything we want to.
Yet, there are still things we cannot see.
Such as the inside of others' minds.
The arts take the various joys, anger, and inflections of the mind and convert them into colors, shapes, sounds, and words.
The arts renew landscapes that have become familiar.
The arts also connect people with different values and cultural backgrounds.
The role of the arts and tourism is to connect people with the stage, music, and art through tourism.
I hope to work with you to devise ways to make outstanding art and culture accessible to as many people as possible, making it a source of pride for the community.
In the year 2020, the world was struck by a calamity the likes of which it had never experienced before.
Covid-19 has had widespread societal effects and has disrupted economic activities.
Among these activities, tourism and the live entertainment industry, such as theater and music, were hit the soonest and are expected to be the slowest to recover.
These two industries have the same structure, profiting through attracting people, but the virus has made this impossible to do. They've taken serious damage, but is their future bleak?
I don't think so.
For example, in Japan's music industry, CD sales have been steadily declining for the past 20 years, but live performance sales are said to have quadrupled. Regardless of the Internet, people have always wanted to be exposed to live art.
I believe that this trend will continue after Covid-19.
Because we have spent so much time out of touch with others, people will be looking for closer, more intimate, real-life contact.
We have taken on a new mission in society to produce human resources who will be responsible for the recovery of the tourism and live entertainment industries, which have been severely damaged.
I hope we can work together to pioneer the future of arts and tourism.
Oriza Hirata, President, Professional College of Arts and Tourism