The anime song event ANiuTa Concert 2017 ‘ANiuPa!!’ was held at Yoyogi National Gymnasium in Tokyo on 13 May 2017.
It was a live concert hosted by ANiUTa, the first subscription-based anime music streaming service, and featured four major anime song artists: May’n, Wake Up, Girls!, Aqours, and ALI PROJECT. They held an impressive performance for an audience of about 9,000 people.
Before the performance, the vending area outside the venue was packed with fans buying T-shirts and CDs of the featured artists. Inside, DJ WILDPARTY was having a live DJ party, playing anime tracks. Popular anime songs pumped up the venue like a live concert, and just when it got heated up enough, the real live performance started.
The live performance started with May’n. She showed up cheerfully on stage in a gray sleeveless shirt, a pair of black shorts and high heels, and started singing her 4th single ‘Kimi shinitamou koto nakare’, released in 2009. The hall was full of people holding red glow sticks. The monitor screen was replicating a large smartphone screen at the center of the stage and projected anime footage of Shangri-La, the anime series that used the song as its opening theme.
Filled with deafening cries of joy from the audience that erased the voice of the MC, she then sang ‘ViViD’, the opening theme for Blood Lad. She performed it along with 2 male dancers!
May’n said on stage, ‘The future of ANiUTa is up to us all. Let’s make the best ANiUTa history here by making this concert successful!’ The next track she performed was ‘Northern Cross’ from Macross Frontier, one of the hits that made her popular, and then the male dancers joined her again for ‘Belief’, the opening theme of Taboo Tattoo.
The last song she performed was ‘Diamond Crevasse’ from Macross Frontier, ‘You have a miracle and fateful encounter in life. Perhaps some people are listening to my music because we have ANiUTa. As for me, this song made me May’n. It made me who I am today.’
The next group on stage was Wake Up, Girls!, a group of seven members. They performed the song that started the unit, ‘7 Girls War’, the opening theme for Wake Up, Girls! and people changed their glow sticks’ color to green. The 7 members spread wide on the stage from the left end to the right and excited the audience with their song!
They introduced themselves after the song and then they lined up in formation to sing ‘Shoujo Koukyoukyoku’ and ‘Beyond the Bottom’, the theme songs for the 2 movie sequels. As some of the fans switched the color of their glow sticks, others followed them to switch theirs too. The members noticed that and thanked them all from the stage, saying ‘Thank you for following the color switch even if you didn’t know about it.’
Then Yoshino Aoyama, aka Yoppi, sang ‘Koi? de Ai? de Boukun desu!’ from the new anime series Love Tyrant (Ren’ai Boukun) where she voices the protagonist. Then they ended their performance with ‘Tachiagare!’ from the film Wake Up, Girls! – Seven Idols, closing it with their last greeting, ‘Thank you!’
The large monitor screen suddenly showed a line of letters saying ‘ANiUTa Premium.’ The artists that will appear in this concert would be performing cover versions of songs performed by other artists. It’s a special plan for this event.
First, May’n performed ‘Miiro’, the theme of Kantai Collection. She re-interpreted the song in her own way, very different from how AKINO sings it!
Next up was was ALI PROJECT with ‘Miwakugeki’, a track written for the popular game Ensemble Stars! and originally performed by a fictional unit, but written and composed by ALI PROJECT themselves. Their fans were longing for them doing this cover and their dream came true.
Excitement reached its peak when Wake Up, Girls performed ‘Youkoso, Japari Park e’. It is the opening theme of one of the most popular anime series in the first half of this year, Kemono Friends, and the original performer, Doubutsu Biscuits x PPP, a unit of voice actresses, also became very popular. The hall was heated up at max for the fact that the popular song was covered by the popular voice actress unit, and it gained the biggest cheer that day.
Some special guests joined the event. Hiroaki TOMMY Tominaga sang ‘Jojo ~ Sono Chi no Sadame ~’ from Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, and Hiroshi Kitadani sang ‘We Go!’ and ‘We are! For the new world’ from ONE PIECE.
Then, the artist ranking of ANiUTa was announced. Maaya Sakamoto was in 5th place, fhana in 4th, Walküre in 3rd, Poppin’ Party in 2nd, and 1st place went to Aqours from Love Live! Sunshine!!. As the monitor screen showed footage of Aqours singing, the audience started chanting for them, as if their live performance had already started. Then the VA unit Aqours appeared on stage. The audience welcomed them by switching the color of their glow sticks!
Amid roaring cheers from the audience, Aqours started their performance with ‘Aozora Jumping Heart’, the opening theme of Love Live! Sunshine!! They danced in sync with the anime characters projected on the large screen, as how ‘Love Live!’ is supposed to be.
They then sang their debut single, ‘Kimi no Kokoro wa Kagayaiteru kai?, and ‘Koi ni Naritai AQUARIUM’, their second single with beautiful anime footage where characters sing at an aquarium, exactly as the song title says. At the dropping hook of the ‘Koi ni Naritai AQUARIUM’, people switched their glow sticks from blue to ultra-orange, which impressed and pleased the members on stage!
As they were dressed in the costumes for ‘Mirai Ticket,’ their last performance was of course ‘Mirai Ticket.’ People lit the hall with various colors with their glow sticks, and the members thanked the audience and left the stage.
Finally, the last performer of the day, ALI PROJECT showed up on stage. The stage was lit in blue and the glow sticks held by people’s hands were all red in contrast. It looked very beautiful. The first song was ‘Coppelia no Hitsugi’, the opening theme of Noir, with 4 back-up dancers dressed as drag queens!
The vocalist, Arika Takarano, said ‘I chose the most exciting songs for today’, and performed their second song, ‘Yuukyou Seishunka’, the ending theme of Code Geass – Lelouch of the Rebellion. Then they performed one of their biggest hits, ‘Seishoujo Ryouiki; from Rozen Maiden Traumend, and other popular hit songs of theirs, such as ‘Ankoku Tengoku’ from Kamichama Karin, and ‘Rara Eve Shinseiki’ from The Girl Who Leapt Through Space.
All the performers that day gathered up on stage for the last greeting, and May’n thanked the audience, ‘Thank you very much for making this successful!’ Everyone in the hall shouted ‘ANiUTa’, the name of the application!
As people were about to leave, they announced some surprising news. The large monitor screen on stage showed that May’n and Wake Up, Girls! were collaborating to release a new opening theme for the upcoming new TV anime series Isekai Shokudou, airing in July. A big stir swept the hall again, followed by cheers.
The event, ‘ANiUPa!!’ was full of surprises. I’m sure with this success, it is assured to host another one in the near future. I’m looking forward to more surprises they may give us with the next event!