Shokotan is the nickname of Shiyoko Nakagawa, a multi-talented entertainer with her own bizarre flair for coiffure and style. Although no one dares to dispute the idea of “to each his own,” this girl’s penchant for wearing dead cicadas in her hair or even wearing them sometimes as a hat, does leave something to be at least questioned if not desired.

The child of late singer Katsuhiko Natakawa, who was a 1980s celebrity, Shokotan is a star and a Japanese idol in her own right. She is an actress, illustrator and singer who made her entertainment debut in 2001 at the Popolo Girl Audition where she won the Grand Prix award, representing the Jackie Chan talent agency.

The 24 year-old is also a talented manga cartoonist and has been well known to the general Japanese public since 2005, when she appeared as a regular performer on the TBS programme, “Osama no Brunch.” Her CD, “Brilliant Dream” was released in 2006 and was well received. Shokotan also performed in the United States at the Anime Expo held at the Los Angeles Convention Center in July of last year.

“While growing up I often had to pass the time by drawing or watching anime. Everyone does that kind of stuff when they are little, but years later I was still watching anime. My friends thought something was wrong with me. I tried to get interested in the things they were into, like fashion and pop singers, but I never really did,” admits Shokotan.

But Shokotan is one of a kind, and it is perhaps her kinky side and wide gamut of geeky hobbies that she chooses to share with her public that is a large part of her appeal. Enter the cicadas in her hair; props that symbolize her bizarre and highly eccentric nature. After one performance, she actually tossed the crispy shells into the front row of the audience.

“I really care about how much proof of my life I can leave behind; how many concerts I can give and how many photos I can have taken. I’m just afraid to have any free time and I’m scared of doing nothing,” says Shokoton.

Considering her many achievements, such a scenario is highly unlikely, although no one can speak for those cicadas!




M Dee Dubroff is the penname of this freelance writer and former teacher originally from Brooklyn, New York. A writer of ghostly and horror fiction, she has branched out into the world of humorous non fiction writing and maintains eight web sites covering a wide variety of topics. She also writes feature articles for several local newspapers. Her book entitled: A Taste of Funny, and her website, Eat, Drink And Really Be Merry ( feature many well researched and humorous articles on the subject of food and drink.