Persona 5 the Animation aired in Japan from April to September 2018. Two months after the series became the talk among fans for a mysterious ending, which kept everybody wanting more, on 25 November 2018 an event took place at Tokyo’s Olympus Hall Hachioji, called the ‘Masquerade Party’. There were two shows planned for the event, the daytime show called ~Detective Party~ and the evening show themed ~Phantom Midnight~. We were able to attend the ~Detective Party~ and have a report about it here for you!
The anime is very popular and many members of the cast were in attendance. The full guest list was: Jun Fukuyama (voice of Ren Amamiya), Mamoru Miyano (Ryuji Sakamoto), Nana Mizuki (Ann Takamaki), Ikue Otani (Morgana), Tomokazu Sugita (Yusuke Kitagawa), Rina Sato (Niijima), Aoi Yuki (Futaba Sakura), Haruka Tomatsu (Haru Okumura), and Goro Akechi (Soichiro Hoshi). The host of the event was Yuki Iwai from the comedy duo Haraichi. With so many great names on stage, the event was broadcasted into Japanese cinemas all over the country for live viewings.
To fit the theme of ‘Masquerade Party’, the stage was decorated to give it a mysterious atmosphere. From the beginning the cast was welcomed with big laughs and applause as they danced magnificently (?) onto the stage and made poses representing their characters. Even though Fukuyama had given an elaborate welcome speech from behind the stage before the event began, when it actually came to the opening greetings, he suddenly stumbled over his own words which made the audience and his colleagues laugh. Every cast member started to introduce themselves but the biggest attention was paid to Hoshi. Even though his introduction started as cool as his character Akechi, he soon greeted everybody with his trademark ‘Pappi~’, making his fans very happy.
The event then started properly with a live reading. The narrator of the story was Hoshi’s character Akechi.
The outline of the story was that, to solve a certain case, they have to infiltrate a so-called Masquerade Party taking place at a club in Shibuya. As the characters are all high school students, it is important that they don’t seem too obvious that they have never really been to a nightclub before. The cast said they associate nightclubs with dancing, so they showed off their original dance movies. In the midst of all the laughs, it was especially the combination of Miyano and Tomatsu that had everyone in stitches. Just imagine Michael Jackson’s Thriller dance in a pair dance kind of style. Tomatsu seemed a little surprised at Miyano’s lead, but the audience enjoyed it a lot. The reading ended when the drunk gossip reporter Ichiko Oya (voiced by Yumi Uchiyama, her voice was pre-recorded) lead them into a room at the back of the club. Next up was the game corner. As a rule, the results of the game would influence how the second part of the live reading would develop and like that the game started. Every one of the nine cast members received a letter and a hint and they had to spell out a word using those hints and letters. If they manage to clear three words, they succeed! They managed to complete the mission after the fourth try. They had good teamwork. During the live reading, the host also took on a role and pretended to be the manager of Masquerade Party and the audience and cast members admired him for his unexpectedly good performance.
After the second part of the reading ended, Lyn appeared on stage and gave a powerful performance of the opening theme ‘Break in to Breakout’. As a second song she performed the ending theme ‘Infinity’, which was the first time she performed the song live. The audience was super excited to hear the song. When the live performance ended the broadcasting time of the Year’s End special was announced. On 30 December the special animation program called ‘Dark Sun…’ will air. The key visual of the special is a bit mysterious, as it doesn’t include Ren Amamiya. The audience was left confused, as this also marked the ending of the event. Everybody really wants to know what this special episode will be about. That’s what you call an impactful key visual!
Time went by so fast and the 90-minute-long event ended. At the end Otani said, ‘I wanted to try something.’ and started a call and response. When she said ‘Masquerade Party’ the audience had to reply ‘YAY!’ so they played forth and back with that until streamers exploded into the air with a big bang rained down on the audience. The curtains closed and the party was over.