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Makuhari Messe Center to host Taekwondo and Wrestling at Tokyo 2020 Olympics

Makuhari Messe Convention Center has been chosen to host Taekwondo and Wrestling at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Makuhari Messe is a Japanese convention center outside Tokyo, located in the Mihama-ku ward of Chiba city, in the northwest corner of Chiba prefecture. Designed by Fumihiko Maki, it is easily accessible by Tokyo’s commuter rail system. Makuhari is the name of the area, and Messe is a German language word meaning “trade fair”.

The convention center opened on October 9, 1989. It hosts many high-technology events.

Makuhari Messe is conveniently close to Tokyo Disney Resort in Urayasu, and to Chiba prefecture’s black sand beaches. It is easily accessible from Kaihimmakuhari station on the Keiyō Line of East Japan Railway Company (JR East). The center is the host of the annual Tokyo Auto Salon (modified car show, in January), the biennial Tokyo Motor Show (in October), the annual Tokyo Game Show (video game hardware and software exhibition, in September), the annual Jump Festa (manga, anime, and video game exposition, in December), and the biannual Wonder Festival (toys, scale figures, and garage kits exposition, in February and July). The venue was host to several Nintendo Space World events.

Notable events
Since 2000, the centre have been used for the Summer Sonic music festival every year, where the venue hosts the Mountain and Sonic stages.

On April 23 and 24, 2011, Australian singer Kylie Minogue performed as part of her Aphrodite: Les Folies Tour.

On July 31, 1999, rock band Glay held their first Glay Expo concert, titled Glay Expo ’99 Survival, at the venue. The concert garnered a total audience of about 200,000 people, making it the largest concert ever held by a single act in Japan, as certified by the Guinness World Records.

The venue was noted in 2005 for hosting the first round of the Live8 concert.

On 1 July 2005, the company that owns the convention center changed its name from “Nippon Convention Center” to “Makuhari Messe”.

The “Jack in the Box 2009 Summer” convention was held here on August 15, 2009, where numerous well-known acts performed, including the reunion performance of influential metal band Dead End.

American pop superstar Lady Gaga performed in the arena for the first time, as part of her debut headlining tour, The Fame Ball Tour on August 8, 2009.

The center also hosted the Magic: The Gathering World Championship in 2010.

It was scheduled to host the Anime Contents Expo, hosted by the Comic-10 Shakai in March 2011 to counter the Tokyo International Anime Fair as part of their boycott of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government under Governor Shintarō Ishihara, but both events were cancelled after the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. The first Anime Contents Expo was held on March 31 and on April 1, 2012, and was visited by 42,000 people. The next one is scheduled for March 30 and March 31, 2013.

The Japanese band the GazettE held various concerts there, e.g. their 10th anniversary concert on March 10, 2012.

The heavy metal annual festival tour Ozzfest took place here on May 11–12, 2013. This was the festival’s first appearance in Japan. One Direction’s Final Leg of their Take Me Home Tour was held in the makuhari to an attendance of 150,000 people.

Mariah Carey performed in the arena for the first time, as part of her The Elusive Chanteuse Show on October 4, 2014.

The Metal festival “Knotfest Japan” was held here on 15 and 16 November 2014

As an epilogue to their 25th anniversary, Luna Sea hosted the rock festival Lunatic Fest on June 27 and 28, 2015. Other acts include Siam Shade, Dir en grey, 9mm Parabellum Bullet and Fear, and Loathing in Las Vegas the first night and Glay, Mucc and Alexandros the second.

Techno-Pop group Perfume performed at standing only concerts June 16, 18, and 19, 2016

Makuhari Messe hosted a Vocaloid live concert, Magical Mirai 2016, in early September of that year.

Makuhari Messe hosted a second Vocaloid concert, Magical Mirai 2017, in early September of that year.

Ariana Grande played 3 shows at the arena for her Dangerous Woman Tour performing to over 52,000 people.

The third Vocaloid concert to be held in Makuhari Messe, Magical Mirai 2018, will be held in August or September that year.

Makuhari Messe will be the venue for four sports during the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. The sports are fencing, taekwondo, karate and wrestling, all of which were originally to be staged at Tokyo Big Sight. This move is a part of cost-cutting measures implemented by the organisers.

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