ouenkai (応援会) literally, "support club":

Before a star has a formal fan club, she usually has an unofficial "support club" of enthusiastic fans who write letters and express a desire to meet her in person. They may arrange meetings through an acquaintance of the star (otsukiai) or have direct contact with the star via e-mail. These groups are not "registered" with the formal clubs of a troupe (see kai-touroku) and may hold small "tea-drinking parties", "social gatherings", or sometimes dinner parties.

When an ouenkai has enough active members to represent a reasonable amount of fan support, the star chooses an official representative (daihyou) and the club is formally registered. Sometimes the otsukiai from earlier days becomes the club's daihyou. Depending on the size of the group, staff members may also be added.

It has been said by some fans that young stars do not form official clubs until their 5th year (see kenkyuuka), but this does not seem to be a firm rule.

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fan clubs

Created by lokai. Last Modification: Friday 13 of June, 2014 12:38:57 GMT-0000 by zaraphena.