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Caribbean

Published on April 20th, 2016 | by TTWHISTLEBLOWER

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Despite Asami’s murder…. ‘Japanese still planning to come for Carnival’

Musical student Mia Gormandy was worried about the response she would get from the Japanese when she returned to that country following the unsolved murder of Asami Nagakiya.

Asami, 30, was strangled to death and her body dumped under a tree at the Queen’s Park Savannah on Carnival Tuesday, February 9. Her body was discovered the following morning. Her murder remains unsolved, although a suspect is known to the police.

Mia wrote on Facebook:

“While many Japanese pannists consider Asami’s death an isolated event and a “crime of passion,” they do think that there are major cultural differences that can lead to dangerous situations.”

That is what Mia Gormandy found out when she returned to Japan on March 15, 2016, to continue her dissertation research on the steel band communities in Japan for her PhD in Musicology at… Florida State University.

“I returned to Japan without any idea of what to expect. Were my friends going to lose trust in me as a Trinidadian? Would they ever return to Trinidad? Perhaps they will never play steel pan again and discourage others from doing so. “Was someone really going to try to kill me for revenge? These were thoughts that stormed my mind on my way to Japan as I reflected on the times I spent with Asami. When I arrived, I quickly realized that I was wrong and I didn’t have anything to worry about,” she wrote in her blog for Musicology Now. “I had many conversations with Japanese musicians who regularly visit Trinidad.

“They told me that Asami’s death has given them motivation to continue promoting Trinidad’s culture within Japan. They hope to return to Trinidad for future carnivals with intentions of participating in more events. “They also want to encourage others to do the same. For example, while it is safe to walk the streets alone late at night in Japan, Trinidad and Tobago highly discourage this activity due to the rapid increase in crime over the past few years.

“Due to such differences, some Japanese musicians are forming an unofficial organization to help promote the safety of Japanese visitors during Carnival time in Trinidad by offering important sources that can lead to a better understanding of Trinidad and Tobago’s culture.

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