AVEX is a power house in the domestic record and entertainment industry here in Japan. Until recently they have devoted their efforts to the domestic market – nurturing J-POP artists and ‘talent’. However, with Japanese culture experiencing a boom overseas, particularly in France and the US, the playing field has changed dramatically in the past few years. By far the biggest contributor to this change has been the internet, and more specifically YouTube, with its far-reaching power to connect music fans around the world.
Since 2012, AVEX has set its sights on these emerging markets and has been holding its Star Search Talent Auditions both domestically and overseas (in New York, Los Angeles, London, Hawaii), seeking out English-speaking, bilingual and international future-stars. Through their Global Japan Challenge project they also send Japanese artists to New York to study English, and hone dance and vocal skills.
Talent scouted through these auditions are enrolled in the AVEX Artist Academy (four locations in Japan) where they learn the skills required to make it on the global stage and are groomed for success.
Some of the success stories to emerge from this process are dance unit Future Boyz who made their major debut last year. Both members are from Okinawa and one of them, Wayne, is a US-Japan mixed-race artist. They sing entirely in English and are currently making waves across Japan and also Korea and Taiwan. There is also Niki, a US-Japan mixed race model that was scouted at last years AVEX Tokyo Girls Audition, winning the grand prix and launching her modelling career. She now appears regularly in both magazinse and on tv.
Actor and tv talent Matthew, also a graduate of the AVEX academy is now the host of a weekly entertainment TV show called “Fox Backstage Pass” and MC for 81.3 J-Wave radio show “ZAPPA” (Mon-Thu). He says of the AVEX experience:
“I learned a lot during my days in Avex development. I took acting and singing lessons, received professional guidance, and emceed in multiple events. It is a lot of hard work, but this is my passion and I truly enjoy it. I hope you turn this opportunity to find out whether it is yours!”
So, if you know someone that is destined for stardom, point them in the direction of the AVEX Star Search Audition before June 15th. Models, singers, artists, and entertainers of all ages are welcome to apply!