Yoyogi National Stadium is a central stadium built in Tokyo, Japan’s Yoyogi Park. The stadium, also often known as Yoyogi National Gymnasium, or Yoyogi Stadium was built between 1961 and 1964 in preparation for hosting the 1964 Tokyo Summer Olympic Games. Designed by Kenzo Tange, the Stadium has become world famous for its suspension roof design and was the inspiration for the building of Frei Otto’s arenas for the 1972 Munich Summer Olympics.
The stadium holds 10,500 people at full capacity and was originally used for both swimming and diving events when it was first opened. Since then, the arena has been used for everything from diving to ice hockey and basketball. Most recently, the stadium was used in 1997 and 1998 to open the NHL hockey season with matches between the Vancouver Canucks and Anaheim Ducks, as well as the San Jose Sharks and Calgary Flames. Other recent uses of the arena include a number of concerts, mostly rock concerts with a number of overseas artists and domestic arena shows taking place here.
Due to its close proximity to Harajuku Station and the Harajuku fashion scene, Yoyogi National Stadium has been used since 2005 as the sight of the twice annual Tokyo Girls Collection. The show, which features fashion displays from many of Tokyo’s top real clothes designers is an open event that more than 20,000 Tokyo residents will often attend. The two day fashion show features concert style runway shows, music, and comedians and is one of the only such shows in the world to incorporate mass, pop culture with the normally closed doors of the fashion scene. The show has recently been moved around Japan as well, appearing in Saitama and Yokohama in the 2007 versions of the show.