A very talented voice actor Hiro Shimono is challenging something new, after 15 years from his debut. He released his first single as a solo singer. With the first single “REAL”/リアル-REAL-, he performed a live concert named “Hiro Shimono Birthday Live Event REAL” in Tokyo Yamano Hall on April 24th, 2016 (Sun). Hiro Shimono just had his birthday on April 21, so the concert was full of events including birthday video messages from surprise guests.
He appeared on the stage as the fans cheered him enthusiastically. He participated in a game specially planned for his birthday and his 15th anniversary as a voice actor, called “Happy 15th Anniversary of Voice Actor Debut! 15 Things That We Want To Give To Hiro Shimono!” It was kind of a game in which Shimono takes three challenges per session (there were five sessions so 15 challenges in total), and if he clears three challenges in one session, then he would be able to get one of his five wishes. In previous two sessions that he had in Osaka, he failed both times.
This day, he tried “Impromptu Song Showdown”, “What’s in the Box, Mr. Shimono?” and “Bare Hand Sword Catch Showdown for REAL!”
<Hiro Shimono’s 5 Wishes for His Birthday>
・Go to Dracula’s Castle (Romania)
・Drink sake in outdoor onsen in winter
・A week off!
In “Impromptu Song Showdown”, Shimono faced off against Tadanori Date/伊達忠智, who is junior to Shimono and also was the emcee for the event. They had to make up a song on “asking someone out, and he or she was the same sex as you”, a theme they blindly picked up from a box. Date sang a song about “when you asked a girlfriend out and found out she was he.” Shimono praised Date’s song that he became such a good singer. Shimono, on the other hand, sang a song about how “he fell in love with a man, but he didn’t care.” But he perfected the song with a melody having a verse, a bridge, and a chorus, which lead him to clear the challenge.
The next challenge “What’s in the Box, Mr. Shimono?”, he had to put his hand inside a box and guess what’s inside just by his hand. The answer was a toy named “Super Itai Wani” (an alligator shaped toy with a wide open mouth that bites you when you touch the wrong teeth), and Shimono managed to scream the answer while it bites him. However, he failed the challenge because he didn’t get the name right.
As a rule, his trial should have ended here. But given a second chance, he tried the third challenge “Bare Hand Sword Catch Showdown for REAL!” Shimono did everything he could do to catch the chambara sword that Date swung down on him, but he couldn’t do it. He received a camouflage raincoat that makes him want to try Airsoft even more, as a consolation prize.
Also, Shimono was tested on his memory on “Prank! Hiro Shimono Anecdote Quiz!” His friends and colleagues asked him questions on their past actions, such as “What was the name of the drink that I gave to you as a birthday present?” Shimono did make some good guesses but couldn’t get the answer correctly. As a penalty game, he had to say cheesy lines like “confessing love to a girl while playing at the beach” and “confessing love to a childhood friend” in his best voice.
Lastly, Shimono performed live in front of the audience. First, he started off with character songs that he has played before. He excited his fans with “Shooting Star Shoot”/「流星シュート」 from TV anime series “CLUSTER EDGE” and enchanted everyone by his gentle voice with “Alone” from TV game “Melody of Water II: Memory of Scarlet”/『水の旋律2 〜緋の記憶〜』.
After a short break with a behind-the-scenes video of the event, they moved on to “REAL Leather Jacket Collection.” Shimono showed three leather jackets that were actually used for the cover picture of the single “REAL” and wore all three on the stage. Also, there were surprise video messages from Daisuke Ono and Kouji Tsujitani. Shimono couldn’t help but scream in embarrassment when Tsujitani revealed some embarrassing anecdotes and photos of him.
After singing “Promise”/「約束」 included in the first single as B-side song, he finally sang his very first single “REAL” with all his thanks to his fans. In the encore, he announced that he will be releasing a second single in this summer, and sang “REAL” once again before wrapping up the event.
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