Discrimination based on gender and sexuality is an issue in many communities and Tokyo’s music and nightlife scene is no exception. Waifu, whose name was taken from the caricature of an ‘anime wife’ in order to reclaim the term, is a group of five women – Midori Morita, Lauren Rose Kocher, Elin McCready, Maiko Asami and Lisa Tani – who are determined to make Tokyo’s entertainment scene more accessible to the city’s LGBTQ+ community. The group, which has held five events in the past year to resounding acclaim, say they are open to all people regardless of gender, race, age or sexual orientation.
The group was formed after Elin was turned away from a lesbian party in Shinjuku Ni-chome for being a trans woman. After realising there weren’t enough party venues in the city where people of sexual minorities could be themselves, Elin and her fellow Waifu members agreed that they needed to initiate change. So they decided to organise their own event, one that would have a strict anti-discrimination policy.