Comments from the Top (Executive Director - General of Broadcasting)

Executive director - General of Broadcasting

Summary of Press Conference (January, 2018)

  • NHK Special “Higashi Nihon Dai Shinsai (Great East Japan Earthquake)”

    (Comments by Yukinori Kida, Executive Director of Broadcasting)

    On March 11th, it will be seven years since the Great East Japan Earthquake. This year, NHK will again broadcast NHK special programs related to the disaster.
    On March 4th, “Shikaku - Kasen o Sakanoboru Tsunami (Blind Spot – Tsunamis Which Go Upriver)” will be broadcast. In the Great East Japan Earthquake, towns which were 5 kilometers away from the sea suffered severe damage from the tsunami travelling up rivers. It has become clear that many such towns exist across the country that are unaware they could suffer the same fate. The program will shine a light on such blind spots using footage and testimony from the time of the disaster, along with cutting-edge simulations to recreate the effects of a tsunami going upriver. On the 7th, “Hibaku no Mori II Genpatsu Jiko 7-nenme no Kiroku (The Radiated Forest II – A Record of the Seven Years Since the Nuclear Accident)” is a follow up program of NHK special in March last year portraying the reality of the deserted towns which have been overrun by wild animals since nuclear accident. Last year in Fukushima Prefecture, the exclusion orders for some areas that were evacuated after the accident at the Tokyo Electric Power Co. Fukushima Dai-Ichi Nuclear Power Plant were rescinded, but centered round the mountainous areas, some regions are still off limits. For 24,000 former residents, access to their old homes remains severely restricted. What kind of effect has radiation had on the remote areas where people no longer live? And what will happen there in the future? In the program, scientists will discuss the latest findings from the areas to show the reality of what is occurring.

  • Programs Related to the PyeongChang Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games

    (Comments by Yukinori Kida)

    Introducing programs related to the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games, which begin on February 9th.

    NHK Special “Ski Jump Joshi (Women’s)”
    February 3rd “Ski Jump Joshi ’10-byo’ Kyokugen no Tatakai (Women’s Ski Jump – 10-second Extreme Battle)”. From the start to when competitors land, it takes about 10 seconds; during that 10 seconds ski jumpers put everything on the line. With natural factors such as the wind and snow which change minute-by-minute, they give it their all in a single moment. The secrets of the power of Sara Takanashi, seen as a strong gold medal contender, will be analyzed using a 4K high-speed camera and the latest technology, along with the story about unknown bond between her and Yuki Ito, who improved so rapidly last season. The program will portray the constant tough trainingand how she will compete against her overseas rivals who have raised their game.

    “NHK Special Figure Skate Danshi - Hanyu Yuzuru Senshu (Men’s Skater - Yuzuru Hanyu)
    February 7th, “Hanyu Yuzuru Gorin Renpa e no Michi (Yuzuru Hanyu – Road to Successive Olympic Victories)”. Hanyu is aiming to be the first skater in 66 years to win successive Olympic Gold in men’s figure skating. Hanyu has pushed himself to his limits in order to once again reach a historic pinnacle at the PyeongChang Olympics, the highest level competitions than ever, but an accident during practice led to an injury to his right ankle. Despite that, he spoke frankly to NHK, saying “I want to get better and better.” How does he train every day to get even more skillful than he had been? The program follows Hanyu on his quest to defend his Olympic title.

    NHK Special “Speed Skate – Joshi Dantai Pursuit (Women's Team Pursuit)”
    February 14th “Women's Speed Skating Team Pursuit”. In an event where three skaters take turns being the lead skater in the line, who experiences the most aerodynamic drag, over 2,400 meters, the gold medal is seen as being within the grasp of the Japan women’s team. The secrets of success in the event are battling against the aerodynamic drag by skating in an unwavering synchronized line and the rapid changes in lead skater. The program will thoroughly dissect the Japanese team’s strategy and skating.

    “Close up Gendai+ Snowboard – Hirano Ayumu Senshu (Snowboarder Ayumu Hirano)” February 7th, “Zen Jin Mito no Owaza de Idomu Kin Medal (Challenging for the Gold Medal With a Technique That Has Never Been Done Before)”. Halfpipe snowboarder Ayumu Hirano last year suffered a potentially career-threatening injury while attempting a jump that has only been successfully completed by three people. But at the PyeongChang Olympics he will attempt to execute a series of those jumps. The program will follow closely Hirano’s challenge as he tries to overcome his fear in his pursuit of a gold medal and also look at how to ensure the safety of this high-level technique that carries with it a high risk of injury.

    “Close up Gendai+ Speed Skate Kodaira Nao (Speed skater Nao Kodaira)” February 8th “Kyukyoku no Form de Kin o Toru (Taking Gold with Ultimate Form)”. Speed Skater Nao Kodaira is aiming for gold medals in both the women’s 500-meter and 1,000-meter events. The program will unveil the secrets behind Hirano’s development as she uses training based on movements from ancient Japanese martial arts and exercise physiology in her pursuit of “Ultimate Form” and aims to achieve perfect skating.

    “Sara-meshi – Kantoku Meshi (Salaryman-lunch – Manager’s Lunch)”
    On General TV on February 12th will be a special edition of “Sara-Meshi” will be broadcast “Kantoku Meshi PyeongChang Gorin Oen Special (Manager’s Lunch PyeongChang Olympics Special)”. The coach of Japan’s speed skating national teams, Dutchman Johan de Wit, trains the skaters based on scientific principles. With that extending even to lunches, and ideal body-fat percentage targets for each individual skater identified, he has brought in a dedicated nutritionist to create a special menu centered round Japanese cuisine. However, de Wit absolutely hates raw fish, as well as octopus and squid. The program follows the coach as he puts up with the food day after day for the sake of the team, and looks at the menu for the skaters.

  • The ‘Universal Broadcast’ presenter for the PyeongChang Olympics and Paralympics has been decided

    (Comments by Yukinori Kida)

    ‘Universal Broadcasting’ features sign language, subtitles and explanations of what is happening onscreen etc. so that people with an impairment can also enjoy broadcasts. For the games this time, Universal Broadcasting will be delivered not only for the Paralympics, but for the Olympics as well. The main presenter for the broadcasts will be Ken Miyake of Japanese pop group V6. On General TV “Minna de Oen! (Let’s all Cheer Together!) PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Games)” will feature Mitz Mangrove and a rakugo (traditional Japanese storytelling) performer with a visual impairment Katsura Fukuten as studio guests, who will watch the highlights of events alongside the sign language from Miyake and subtitles and explanatory broadcasts, which describe exactly what is happening in the events, for everyone to enjoy. In addition, for the Paralympics, morning digest programs of the previous day’s events, presented alongside reporters with impairments will be broadcast on General TV.

  • Takaki Kabe o Koete! Iyama Yuta Sekai Ichi e no Chosen (Overcoming the Biggest Obstacles! Yuta Iyama – The Challenge to be World Number One)

    (Comments by Yasuhiro Kan, Senior Director, Assistance of Broadcasting)

    Go player Yuta Iyama, who holds a 9th dan rank, has been selected to be given a People's Honour Award, and a documentary about him “Overcoming the Biggest Obstacles! Yuta Iyama – The Challenge to be World Number One” will be broadcast on February 17th on Educational TV. Iyama is the first person in either the go or shogi worlds to win the seven major titles twice and is said to be the greatest shogi player in Japan. However, he has only won one world championship and has suffered painful defeats at the hands of Chinese and Korean players. Iyama is currently playing in the LG Cup World Baduk Championship, one of the major world tournaments, and beat a Chinese player considered the best in the world to advance to the final, leaving him one step away from the pinnacle of the game. The program will look back at the tense semi-final and also the final, which will take place on February 5th, in portraying the challenge of Iyama to become the best in the world.

  • Eat-Sleep-Play a Declaration of Support for Children – School Lunch

    (Comments by Yasuhiro Kan)

    On February 3 on Educational TV, a special program “Ku-neru-asobu Kodomo Oen Sengen – Gakko Kyushoku (Eat-Sleep-Play a Declaration of Support for Children)” will be broadcast. Households with either a single parent or both parents working have increased sharply, with the structure of families and their lifestyles now undergoing major changes. Educational TV has been broadcasting this series over the course of a year with the aim of supporting society’s efforts to protect children’s opportunities to ‘Eat-Sleep-Play’, which are indispensable to their growth and development. In this fourth program, the main theme is ‘School Lunch.’ Currently, issues including skipping meals and unbalanced nutritional intake is leading to an increasingly severe ‘food inequality’ and the role that ‘School Lunch’ fulfils is being reexamined. Tokyo’s Adachi Ward, a pioneer in school lunch reform, has seen improvements begin to show up in areas such as children’s physical and academic capabilities in its studies. In addition, efforts in the cities of Osaka and Kawasaki will also be covered, examining the meaning of the existence of school lunch and what we adults can do.

  • Akihiro Miwa ‘Yoitomake no Uta’ – the love and secrets of the worker’s song

    (Comments by Yasuhiro Kan)

    On BS Premium on February 3rd, “Uta ni Inochi ga Yadoru Toki – Miwa Akihiro – ‘Yoitomake no Uta’ Sono Ai to Himitsu (When Life is Captured in a Song: Akihiro Miwa’s ‘Yoitomake no Uta’ worker’s song – its Love and Secrets)” will be broadcast. In the possessions left behind by the late Showa Era musical maestro Hachidai Nakamura a tape of music was discovered in 2016. That tape contained a recording of Akihiro Miwa singing ‘Yoitomake no Uta’ in his younger days. Why did Nakamura keep this unknown original recording of this song? Unraveling this riddle leads to the story of how the ‘Yoitomake no Uta’ song was born. The program will uncover the secrets of Miwa’s ‘Yoitomake no Uta’ and how it continues to capture people’s hearts, including through the testimonies of Miwa himself and the people around him at that time.

  • BS1 Special “Anata wa Tashika ni Soko ni Ita – London Koso Mansion Kasai (Your Existence Mattered – The London High-Rise Apartment Block Fire)”

    (Comments by Hiroshi Araki, Senior Director, Responsible for NHK WORLD,Assistance of Broadcasting)

    On February 25th, a BS1 Special “Anata wa Tashika ni Soko ni Ita – London Koso Mansion Kasai (Your Existence Mattered – The London High-Rise Apartment Block Fire)” will be broadcast. In June last year a fire broke out in a high-rise apartment block in the wealthy residential district of Kensington, leading to the deaths of more than 70 people. The apartment block was built by the city in order to accommodate the growing number of immigrants so that they could live within the community and avoid the development of a slum district. People on low incomes could also live there and a community from various strata of society was built. But the fire at this apartment block built to allow people to live together brought a number of issues to light. With people who didn’t have citizenship sharing rooms and not registered with the authorities, half a year after the fire there are still more than a few victims yet to be identified. In this program, the current situation of residents and families of the victims will be examined, along with evidence of the lives of those from the apartment block, to look at the meaning of ‘coexistence’.

  • “Kyo wa Ichi-nichi ‘Yuki Uta’ Zanmai (Today is All-day ‘Songs of Bravery’)”

    (Comments by Hiroshi Araki)

    On February 3rd on FM Radio, songs that bring encouragement and inspire bravery will be brought together for a 10-hour live special program “Today is All-day ‘Songs of Bravery’” on the day before the opening of the new NHK Sendai Station. With the timing being just before the PyeongChang Olympics and coming up to seven years since the Great East Japan Earthquake, the program will include talks about various episodes illustrating the power of song and deliver numerous famous songs that will encourage listeners. The presenters will be composer Hyadain (Kenichi Maeyamada) and comedian and music buff Dienoji. Guests will include Mayo Okamoto, Kaori Kishitani, Hitomi Yaida, along with the players of Rakuten Eagles baseball team.