If you can sing in Japanese and you're brave, then you should try for a spot on NTV's program "Nodo Jiman Za! World." Two segments were aired this year -- one in June and the other on Oct 11.
"Nodo Jiman" has been around for decades, mostly on NHK -- "nodo" means throat and "jiman" means boast. It features amateur singers from across Japan who sing their hearts out before a nationwide audience. It has mainly been for Japanese (although African-American singer Jero once appeared on it).
This year, NTV aired its own version -- "Nodo Jiman Za! World," specifically for foreign residents who love singing in Japanese. The contest attracted 13 contestants from 10 countries. The youngest was 12 and the oldest 71.
The winner on Oct 11 was Nicholas Edwards, 19, from the U.S. state of Oregon. He sang "Konayuki" (Powder snow) by Remioromen in the final round.
According to one of the judges, Tsunku -- who is a producer of the famous idol group Morning Musume -- Edwards won because his singing voice shows how much he loves Japan and Japanese songs.
Here is a video of Edwards' performance in the final round.
Sergio from Peru and Monique Dehaney from Jamaica performed very well, too, in the final round.
After watching these videos, who do you think was the best singer? Check out all the contestants here.
"Nodo Jiman Za! World" will probably be on again next year, so start practicing.© Japan Today