ekusudei: (Default)
OG CHICAGO @ Lincoln Center
Koch Theater
July 20-24, 2016


Cast: Hatsukaze Jun, Mine Saori, Isono Chihiro, Mori Keaki, Asaji Saki, Shizuki Asato, Wao Youka, Kozuki Wataru, Hoshina Yuri, Asami Hikaru, Mizu Natsuki, Yamato Yuuga, Suzu Haruki, Makise Kai, Maishiro Nodoka, Manami Sora, Otohana Yuri, Kayou Kirari, Yuuzumi Shun, Tsukio Kazusa, Hanazuki Yuma, Kaon Yuuki, Mishou Kazuki, Koumi Maito, Kitori Mariya, Urara Moe, Maki Izumi, Hayami Sei

Let me just say straight out up front that I'm not a huge fan of the musical Chicago. However, there were members of this tour group who I thought I would never see live on stage, and others who I thought I would never see again live on stage, so this was very precious to me. When I got into the fandom about 10 years ago, Mariko (Asaji Saki) was eight years retired and living in Brazil with her husband and child. Then she started doing OG performances here and there, but I was never in the right place at the right time. This was AMAZING. And Wataru, who was the top star in the very first live show that I saw in 2005. And Mizu, who I had loved so much as a young star, and Marimo, my absolute favorite top musumeyaku ever, and the list goes on and on.... Even Hayami Sei and Maki Izumi ended up being in the NY cast after all!

I saw the Mariko-Mizu-Tani cast twice, once with Hatsukaze-san and once with Mori-san. I saw the Zunko-Wataru-Komu cast on closing night with Mori-san.

I agree with the NY Times review, the show itself was solid but not anything original or likely to steal your heart away. Of the casts that I saw, the Mariko-Mizu-Tani-Mori was my favorite. Mariko just has that charm and appeal, and while Zunko's singing was of course better she just didn't seem as into the performance. Mizu was hands-down the best performer in the cast. Her charisma just took over the entire stage any time she set foot on it, and her singing was strong and Broadway-esque, which is not true for most Takarazuka voices. Wataru had a lot of fun in the role, and I love her to pieces, but she certainly didn't take over the entire stage like Mizu did. I was not expecting Tani to be my favorite Roxie, but her comedy and comedic faces have always been strong (I still love her Nathan Detroit best), and she didn't pull any punches here. Komu's Roxie was woah sexy, but not as funny. Over-all, the Mizu-Tani interactions were more vicious, and you could really buy them as unrepentant killers, while Wataru and Komu seemed to be enjoying life more.

I wasn't certain about Isono-san's Amos Hart at first, but by the time "Mr Cellophane" rolled around I was sold. Very solid, and strongest in the second act. I was SUPER excited to see Hatsukaze-san live on stage. She was a star in the 60s and 70s, one of the first top musumeyaku when the top star system started to develop, and played Marie-Antoinette in the first Takarazuka production of The Rose of Versailles. She is also Hatsukaze Midori's aunt. She returned to the stage in 2000 with the Toho production of Elisabeth and has been steadily acting since. Her voice is certainly as strong and gorgeous as ever, but she seemed frail on stage and I think she was also having some trouble with her sight.

The two big surprises in this show to me were Mori Keaki and Manami Sora. Stay with me! I've seen Mori-san in TMP Specials, in smaller roles, and possibly in a few shows as top star, but nothing ever grabbed me. But with this production I fell in a big way. Her voice is enormous and rich and lovely and "Broadway-esque." Her encore number "That's Life" was my favorite. Manami Sora, wow was she on point as the Jury. She got the biggest laughs every show with her quick-changes and exaggerated comical performances. Really impressive!

Marimo (Aono Yuki) showed off her dancing chops. She had the intro bit, then she was front and center throughout most of the dance numbers, and then she was really awesome as Go-to-Hell Kitty. Man, the Chicago costumes brought back memories.... I miss her in Moon Troupe. Hoshina Yuri was also excellent as Hunyak. .... Actually, it's a little eerie how those two roles matched the personality of a lot of the roles they played while in the Revue.

There were a couple of places that got laughter that I think they weren't expecting at first, but by closing night they were kind of hamming it up. Like the lines at the very end, where Velma and Roxie talk about how they represent American values. Ironic in the original show, it was hilarious spoken in Japanese.

The rest of the company was also excellent. I was impressed by their dancing every time. And the youngest members, who were not listed in the cast lists for NY, actually were there! (Although only for the Encore.) I was so happy! Especially because I was always stage right and a couple of times Hayami-chan was RIGHT THERE. :3

OK, so let's talk Encore! The gentleman from Lincoln Center who arranged to have the performance is also apparently the one who requested a little mini-revue, so this was something added just for the NYC leg of the tour. And it was AMAZING. Basically a jumble of famous revue numbers from the past.

The first three numbers were in the 2015 "Guys and Dolls" line-dance costumes. Four of the ladies were out in the audience for part of it. It was Koumi Maito (I think?) and Hayami Sei stage right, not sure who was stage left.
"Hello Takarazuka!"
"Mambo! No. 5"
"Mira Cats"

"Solamente Una Vez" - Asaji Saki as otokoyaku, Mizu Natsuki and Yamato Yuuga as femme fatales, not sure who sang the shadow chorus
"El Tango de Roxanne" - Shizuki Asato sang as otokoyaku, Kozuki Wataru, Hoshina Yuri, and Aono Yuki as femme fatales. Zunko is not a dancer, so I am not sure why they had her dancing in this number instead of just singing. She managed to drop someone 2 out of the 3 times that I saw the show, poor thing.
"That's Life" - Mori Keaki as otokoyaku with company. Gorgeous. Takarazuka.
"Glory to Be Takarasiennes (Takarasienne ni Eikou Are)" - aka the "Fairy" song. Wao Youka and Asami Hikaru
"Takarazuka, Home in My Heart (Takarazuka, Wa ga Kokoro Furusato)" - Mine Saori and company (Eeeeeverbody in an otokoyaku gunbu dance. I reeeeaaaaally want to know what the musumeyaku felt to get to dance in it.)
"Sumire no Hana Sakugoro" - Hatsukaze Jun as etoile while the company took their bows with feather fans, and the three principals from the performance came out in feathers.

Each time I saw the show people became more and more confident about clapping when the former top stars made their appearances during their encore numbers. My three times I made certain there was clapping for Marimo and Yuri, who I think a lot of non-fans and younger fans don't really know. After the show and before the encore, the three principals of the cast gave a super-titled talk to introduce Takarazuka and the encore. On closing night Zunko, Wataru, and Komu kept forgetting their lines. XD

It was supremely awesome. So awesome. The best of Takarazuka revue show vibes with 12 former top stars. And my tickets were all row A & B, so this was really the closest I've ever been to the stage during a Takarazuka performance. Those 20 minutes made sitting through Chicago three times worth it. So worth it.


Have you seen a production of OG Chicago? What did you think?
ekusudei: (Default)
The Brothers Karamazov
Snow Troupe - Akasaka ACT Theater
2009


Leads: Mizu Natsuki & Shirahane Yuri

[ TakaWiki ]

Good lord, has it been seven years since this show debuted? That is... a little depressing.

I didn't see it when it came to Tokyo, as I was deep in the middle of Yume no Ukihashi adoration and had no money or time to spare for anything else. And then it aired on Sky Stage, and I got a copy.... and it sat in a box of discs for a long time. Er, a very long time, apparently. I knew it must be something special, because everyone who saw it was singing its praises, but I think you have to be in the right mood for a Russian novel, and I was apparently never in the right mood. But Chung asked me for a copy and I figured I had better make sure the disc hadn't degraded, so...

Well, first, the plot. I haven't read the novel it is based on, but I did some quick internet research and it seems to follow the main plotline closely with the exception of the ending. (Which, really? Weird changes.) Um, no one has added a summary to the TakaWiki, so I threw together a quick one, but I've only seen it once. So if any of the fanatical fans want to replace it, or fix it, please be my guest!

What I Thought:

(This is going to be a very short review. Check out yukinojou's and michiru42's linked at the bottom the TakaWiki page for a much more thorough analysis!)

I am a huge fan of Tonami and Mizu, and most of the main cast of this musical. It was bitter-sweet to watch them all acting their hearts out here when so many have retired now. There were some really great scenes from Yumiko as Ivan and Hiromi as Pavel in particular, and Mayumi's dancing as the Hallucination was really fun to watch (and harkened back to that Zuka staple "Marlene Dietrich in a tux"). If you are a fan of any of the main cast, you will definitely want to see this show.

However, all that said... I wasn't a huge fan. The songs didn't really grab me. I felt like Tonami was directed to really over-play her attitude in the first act (Although I loved how throaty her speaking voice was as Grushenka). Hamako didn't get to sing enough. It really seemed to drag in places. I don't know, I guess it just wasn't for me. :(

I did enjoy the second act better than the first, though, and some of the scenes there, especially the final one between Yumiko and Hiromi, were intense in all the right ways. I'd probably give it 3 stars out of 5, with a Your Mileage May Vary warning.

(It's strange, but the more Saitou shows I see, the more iffy I get about him. Even though he was the genius who finally brought Takarazuka together with an Aoike work first and the fact that I have to love him for that. Psst, still waiting for Eroica, Saitou-S!)

♥MIZU♥

Oct. 14th, 2010 10:50 pm
ekusudei: (Mizu Natsuki)
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!

And her first job will be on an Asahi TV travel program in Kyoto with Miki. (Sadly only broadcast in Kanto, airing the 30th.)

TV Mizu is a YES♥

♥MIZU♥

Oct. 14th, 2010 10:50 pm
ekusudei: (Mizu Natsuki)
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!

And her first job will be on an Asahi TV travel program in Kyoto with Miki. (Sadly only broadcast in Kanto, airing the 30th.)

TV Mizu is a YES♥
ekusudei: (Default)
Pic of Mizu and some of her OG classmates who got together for her birthday last month. (Now that she's graduated, the blog's author has posted it.) Hamako♥ Son-chan♥ I think I see Miri, too, her chin is kind of unmistakable♥ And Taiju Maki, Ai Youko, and Asahina Kei, maybe? After that I'm afraid I don't know 79ths well....
ekusudei: (Default)
Pic of Mizu and some of her OG classmates who got together for her birthday last month. (Now that she's graduated, the blog's author has posted it.) Hamako♥ Son-chan♥ I think I see Miri, too, her chin is kind of unmistakable♥ And Taiju Maki, Ai Youko, and Asahina Kei, maybe? After that I'm afraid I don't know 79ths well....
ekusudei: (play without words)
One small article up so far. The parade photos will probably go up tomorrow, when the press goes in to work. ;)

Mizu came down the Grand Staircase in a black tuxedo, rather than hakama. Somehow, I suspected she might.

She said: "I have no regrets about my life in Takarazuka."

She also talked again about wanting a job where she moves, this time mentioning the stage or dance, hinting that she may become an actress.

She's leaving the country on the 14th, going abroad to rest.


PS: Ah, they're up. I'm sad, though, that their new limits mean they didn't post any photos of the other taidansha. I wanted to see Shiyuu Mirei and Rudou Masa in their hakama. *sigh*
ekusudei: (play without words)
One small article up so far. The parade photos will probably go up tomorrow, when the press goes in to work. ;)

Mizu came down the Grand Staircase in a black tuxedo, rather than hakama. Somehow, I suspected she might.

She said: "I have no regrets about my life in Takarazuka."

She also talked again about wanting a job where she moves, this time mentioning the stage or dance, hinting that she may become an actress.

She's leaving the country on the 14th, going abroad to rest.


PS: Ah, they're up. I'm sad, though, that their new limits mean they didn't post any photos of the other taidansha. I wanted to see Shiyuu Mirei and Rudou Masa in their hakama. *sigh*

Le Mistral

Aug. 11th, 2010 01:51 pm
ekusudei: (Default)
Le Mistral
Moon Troupe, 1994, Drama City

Stars: Amami Yuuki & Asano Kayo

[ TakaWiki ]

Summary: )

What I Thought:

I saw the Amami Yuuki version. Sorry, this will be short because I watched it months and months ago.

Well. It's very Takarazuka in that it's this horrible, terrible tale of betrayal and death and assassins, but it's also rather a comedy. And the two spirits of the mirror are rather strange, interspersed narrators with random song and dance numbers which don't fit the rest of the mood of the piece. I liked the comedy bits quite a lot, but the overall effect was rather disjointed.

Mmm, to be harshly honest I'd say it's a bit too maudlin and not a very coherent piece, without very good music or sets or costumes.

BUT then you have to factor in the cast, which I adore, and the fact that I love Yuri and Kayo together, and that Shiokaze Kou and Wakao Risa were just AWESOME villains, and Ritsu Tomomi was amazing gruff craziness. Aoi Miya was hilarious as the foolish detective in the Sherlock Holmes cape. Aihara Serika was beautifully evil. Koshino Ryuu gave a lovely, adorable ken-2 death scene. And then there was spot-the-Saeko, spot-the-Yuuhi, and spot-the-Mizu♥

The sequence near the beginning where they introduce all of the cast outside of the hotel I LOVE and could watch again and again and again.

So all in all I have to say that I enjoyed it and I love philosophical assassin Yuri very, very, very much♥♥

Le Mistral

Aug. 11th, 2010 01:51 pm
ekusudei: (Default)
Le Mistral
Moon Troupe, 1994, Drama City

Stars: Amami Yuuki & Asano Kayo

[ TakaWiki ]

Summary: )

What I Thought:

I saw the Amami Yuuki version. Sorry, this will be short because I watched it months and months ago.

Well. It's very Takarazuka in that it's this horrible, terrible tale of betrayal and death and assassins, but it's also rather a comedy. And the two spirits of the mirror are rather strange, interspersed narrators with random song and dance numbers which don't fit the rest of the mood of the piece. I liked the comedy bits quite a lot, but the overall effect was rather disjointed.

Mmm, to be harshly honest I'd say it's a bit too maudlin and not a very coherent piece, without very good music or sets or costumes.

BUT then you have to factor in the cast, which I adore, and the fact that I love Yuri and Kayo together, and that Shiokaze Kou and Wakao Risa were just AWESOME villains, and Ritsu Tomomi was amazing gruff craziness. Aoi Miya was hilarious as the foolish detective in the Sherlock Holmes cape. Aihara Serika was beautifully evil. Koshino Ryuu gave a lovely, adorable ken-2 death scene. And then there was spot-the-Saeko, spot-the-Yuuhi, and spot-the-Mizu♥

The sequence near the beginning where they introduce all of the cast outside of the hotel I LOVE and could watch again and again and again.

So all in all I have to say that I enjoyed it and I love philosophical assassin Yuri very, very, very much♥♥
ekusudei: (Mizu Natsuki)
One highly-biased review, coming up! ;)

The Dawn at Solferino / Carnevale: A Sleeping Dream
Snow Troupe 2010
Tokyo Theater, April 11th 11:30 AM

Leads: Mizu Natsuki & Aihara Mika

[ TakaWiki ] [ Sanspo Stage Graph ]

The Dawn at Solferino

Overall I didn't care for the musical show, and I'll tell you why. I enjoy talky productions, but I enjoy them because the dialogue is snappy, and because there is some over-arching mystery or spy drama going on. I don't enjoy talky productions with stale, repetitive dialogue, where the same four characters rehash the same arguments over and over and over. There was no mystery -- there wasn't even really any worry of how the show would end, since we all know Dunant succeeds. I suppose the "growth" of Aihara's character is supposed to be where the dramatic tension is, but I found her annoying, and, again, thanks to typical Ueda-Sensei dialogue, every time she opened her mouth she was just saying the same thing again and again. Not caring at all what happened to her sucks the small seeds of engagement out of the show.

Read more... )

I think it's a show that will appeal to Yukigumi fans on account of how well Ueda-Sensei was at giving everyone stage time, and giving fair time to Yumiko in her last show.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Carnevale: A Sleeping Dream

LOVED THE REVUE SHOW!!!!

Mizu danced a lot, which made me very, very happy. Hamako sang a lot of hauntingly lovely songs, which made me ecstatic.

In fact, Hamako was on stage nearly the entire time, decorating the apron stages, so I'm afraid I missed a lot of the revue, except out of the corner of my eye. She grinned, she made faces, she passed out and collected hats and capes and, of course (being a Mask Seller), masks♥

Read more... )

Best of all? I checked the DVD/CD pages -- no music or scene cuts! Inaba-Sensei's first grade for a Grand Theater production = A+

In summary: LOVED it, want Inaba-S for Tsukigumi instead of Nakamura. *pout*
ekusudei: (Mizu Natsuki)
One highly-biased review, coming up! ;)

The Dawn at Solferino / Carnevale: A Sleeping Dream
Snow Troupe 2010
Tokyo Theater, April 11th 11:30 AM

Leads: Mizu Natsuki & Aihara Mika

[ TakaWiki ] [ Sanspo Stage Graph ]

The Dawn at Solferino

Overall I didn't care for the musical show, and I'll tell you why. I enjoy talky productions, but I enjoy them because the dialogue is snappy, and because there is some over-arching mystery or spy drama going on. I don't enjoy talky productions with stale, repetitive dialogue, where the same four characters rehash the same arguments over and over and over. There was no mystery -- there wasn't even really any worry of how the show would end, since we all know Dunant succeeds. I suppose the "growth" of Aihara's character is supposed to be where the dramatic tension is, but I found her annoying, and, again, thanks to typical Ueda-Sensei dialogue, every time she opened her mouth she was just saying the same thing again and again. Not caring at all what happened to her sucks the small seeds of engagement out of the show.

Read more... )

I think it's a show that will appeal to Yukigumi fans on account of how well Ueda-Sensei was at giving everyone stage time, and giving fair time to Yumiko in her last show.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Carnevale: A Sleeping Dream

LOVED THE REVUE SHOW!!!!

Mizu danced a lot, which made me very, very happy. Hamako sang a lot of hauntingly lovely songs, which made me ecstatic.

In fact, Hamako was on stage nearly the entire time, decorating the apron stages, so I'm afraid I missed a lot of the revue, except out of the corner of my eye. She grinned, she made faces, she passed out and collected hats and capes and, of course (being a Mask Seller), masks♥

Read more... )

Best of all? I checked the DVD/CD pages -- no music or scene cuts! Inaba-Sensei's first grade for a Grand Theater production = A+

In summary: LOVED it, want Inaba-S for Tsukigumi instead of Nakamura. *pout*

Things

Jan. 15th, 2010 10:19 pm
ekusudei: (Default)
Ayane-chan's music salon has been announced:

"Ever green" -Like a Spring Breeze-
Inaba Daichi directing
Cast: Ayane, Mattsu, Daimon
Takarazuka (4/14, 4/15)
Tokyo (4/17, 4/18)


Also, on the rare chance someone's not a member of [livejournal.com profile] takarazuka:
Sena Jun's new website is up. Addresses for fan letters in Romaji.

Mizu's press conference. Translation.

Things

Jan. 15th, 2010 10:19 pm
ekusudei: (Default)
Ayane-chan's music salon has been announced:

"Ever green" -Like a Spring Breeze-
Inaba Daichi directing
Cast: Ayane, Mattsu, Daimon
Takarazuka (4/14, 4/15)
Tokyo (4/17, 4/18)


Also, on the rare chance someone's not a member of [livejournal.com profile] takarazuka:
Sena Jun's new website is up. Addresses for fan letters in Romaji.

Mizu's press conference. Translation.

Non-Stop!!

Oct. 12th, 2009 08:42 pm
ekusudei: (Yuuhi - The Last Party)
Non-Stop!!
Moon Troupe 1997, Bow Hall

[ TakaWiki ]

Lead: Kuze Seika

Cast: Misa Noeru (Senka), Natsukawa Yura, Yoshizuki Eri, Juri Sakiho, Takashou Mizuki, Hoshino Hitomi, Mahoroba Yuu, Jouka Azuki, Naruse Kouki, Oozora Yuuhi, Minashiro Hikari, Mizu Natsuki, Mizusawa Hazuki, Yamato Yuuga, Hanase Mizuka, Saijou Mie, Kanou Chika

Summary:

Act I

Aspiring actor Lover Brightman attends auditions for a music company and just makes it in. There he endures strict training from very odd teachers, is used to help a promising classmate, and eventually loses his girlfriend. He looses his innocent confidence, but is re-inspired by his ever helpful theater spirit boy and eventually makes it.

Act II

Lover Brightman performs. Eventually, his spirit comes to lead him off, as he will join the theater spirits.

What I Thought:

More a revue-show type performance, with the paper-thin plot only there to string together the musical numbers. The theater spirits and the idea of the candle/lantern on stage were completely re-used by Fujii-Sensei when he did Touko's "A Bientot" last year.

The cast was great, and very nostalgic. Kuze Seika was... adorable. Also, snooty rocker Mizu Natsuki (ken-5) was worth any amount of pain. Hanase Mizuka was her cute self. I approved of Sakiho Juri and Yoshizuki Eri being Kuze Seika's main back-ups in a lot of numbers. (And Juri and Hoshino Hitomi were hilarious as the teachers.) Yamato Yuuga in that costume was.... ahahah. The duet dance between Natsukawa Yura and Non-chan was hot. Non-chan singing a Japanese version of "Bohemian Rhapsody" was.... unusual. The tuxedo number and the bit with the musumeyaku in the pink things was both hot and hilarious.

But the show was thrown in between the Takarazuka and Tokyo runs of Non-chan's farewell show, and you could tell they didn't have much time to practice. The choreography was much too difficult for the amount of time that they did have, and it shows. Also, the costumes suffer from late-90s Takarazuka Revue fashionitis. On the other hand, there is a costume which... which... which really cannot be described. It must be experienced. And I thought I had seen them all.....

Over-all, a must see for fans of late-90s Tsukigumi, or late-90s craziness. Otherwise, you can probably give it a miss.

Non-Stop!!

Oct. 12th, 2009 08:42 pm
ekusudei: (Yuuhi - The Last Party)
Non-Stop!!
Moon Troupe 1997, Bow Hall

[ TakaWiki ]

Lead: Kuze Seika

Cast: Misa Noeru (Senka), Natsukawa Yura, Yoshizuki Eri, Juri Sakiho, Takashou Mizuki, Hoshino Hitomi, Mahoroba Yuu, Jouka Azuki, Naruse Kouki, Oozora Yuuhi, Minashiro Hikari, Mizu Natsuki, Mizusawa Hazuki, Yamato Yuuga, Hanase Mizuka, Saijou Mie, Kanou Chika

Summary:

Act I

Aspiring actor Lover Brightman attends auditions for a music company and just makes it in. There he endures strict training from very odd teachers, is used to help a promising classmate, and eventually loses his girlfriend. He looses his innocent confidence, but is re-inspired by his ever helpful theater spirit boy and eventually makes it.

Act II

Lover Brightman performs. Eventually, his spirit comes to lead him off, as he will join the theater spirits.

What I Thought:

More a revue-show type performance, with the paper-thin plot only there to string together the musical numbers. The theater spirits and the idea of the candle/lantern on stage were completely re-used by Fujii-Sensei when he did Touko's "A Bientot" last year.

The cast was great, and very nostalgic. Kuze Seika was... adorable. Also, snooty rocker Mizu Natsuki (ken-5) was worth any amount of pain. Hanase Mizuka was her cute self. I approved of Sakiho Juri and Yoshizuki Eri being Kuze Seika's main back-ups in a lot of numbers. (And Juri and Hoshino Hitomi were hilarious as the teachers.) Yamato Yuuga in that costume was.... ahahah. The duet dance between Natsukawa Yura and Non-chan was hot. Non-chan singing a Japanese version of "Bohemian Rhapsody" was.... unusual. The tuxedo number and the bit with the musumeyaku in the pink things was both hot and hilarious.

But the show was thrown in between the Takarazuka and Tokyo runs of Non-chan's farewell show, and you could tell they didn't have much time to practice. The choreography was much too difficult for the amount of time that they did have, and it shows. Also, the costumes suffer from late-90s Takarazuka Revue fashionitis. On the other hand, there is a costume which... which... which really cannot be described. It must be experienced. And I thought I had seen them all.....

Over-all, a must see for fans of late-90s Tsukigumi, or late-90s craziness. Otherwise, you can probably give it a miss.
ekusudei: (Rika & Juri-pyon)
Kaze no Nishiki-e / Zorro
Snow Troupe, Tokyo Opening Night 2009

Stars: Mizu Natsuki & Shirahane Yuri

[ TakaWiki ] [ Sanspo Stage Graph ]

Kaze no Nishiki

Okay, so, to be honest, this wasn't the kind of Nihonmono revue that really appeals to me. I love the ones where they do the folk dances and folk songs, and there was some of that in here, but it was on the whole too cracky for me. There are some songs that really shouldn't be mutilated like that. *grin* Some things weren't meant to be jazzy, and I include "Soran" and "Sakura" in that category.

That said, I adored the opening sequence, with mischievous detective Tonami out to get poor, defenseless, manly, thief Mizu. <3 And I stared really hard at Sagiri Seina, trying to see how the chemistry was between herself and Yukigumi this first time she performed with them. Nothing felt awkward.

Not so fond of the Tom, sadly, though the choreography between her and Ugly-Mustache-Wearing-Mizu was interesting. I don't know much about Uesugi Kenshin or Takeda Shingen, but I like choreographed dance-battles.<3

Matsumoto-sensei seemed a bit unlucky. She had a big piece of hair caught in her eyelashes during one number, and then nearly fumbled her faux-towel thing during the other (though she made a very graceful save in the end, and didn't miss a beat).

The monk and cat-girl line dance just freaked me out.

Yep. That's all I'm going to say about the revue, for my own safety. ;)

~*~*~

Zorro

If it had ended with Kaze no Nishiki-e, I would have been safe and content with my decision to only see this show once, but.... Aaaagh. Zorro. Zorro. ...Zorro.

Mizu, Mizu, I'm sorry I haven't paid you much attention since you became top star; I don't care much for top stars. But I'm reminded now of why you and Yuuhi were my co-favorites for three years. SO HOT. And dancing. Dancing Mizu is all I really need to make me happy.

And I got it. Yay for mini-revues before and after the musical. I think I may have stopped breathing a few times when Mizu was dancing around in her Zorro outfit on the staircase. Ngh.

So! Plot! (With many warnings that this is based on one viewing, and my head was kind of muddled, because my brain kept repeating: 'Oh my god, oh my god.' I completely missed the Hamako storyline.)

Summary: )

What I Thought:

Yes please. Again.

All right, in all seriousness. )


So, revue was meh for me, but the musical was a!ma!zing! adventure fun, and I'll count the opening and finale of the musical as my heart's revue. ;)
ekusudei: (Rika & Juri-pyon)
Kaze no Nishiki-e / Zorro
Snow Troupe, Tokyo Opening Night 2009

Stars: Mizu Natsuki & Shirahane Yuri

[ TakaWiki ] [ Sanspo Stage Graph ]

Kaze no Nishiki

Okay, so, to be honest, this wasn't the kind of Nihonmono revue that really appeals to me. I love the ones where they do the folk dances and folk songs, and there was some of that in here, but it was on the whole too cracky for me. There are some songs that really shouldn't be mutilated like that. *grin* Some things weren't meant to be jazzy, and I include "Soran" and "Sakura" in that category.

That said, I adored the opening sequence, with mischievous detective Tonami out to get poor, defenseless, manly, thief Mizu. <3 And I stared really hard at Sagiri Seina, trying to see how the chemistry was between herself and Yukigumi this first time she performed with them. Nothing felt awkward.

Not so fond of the Tom, sadly, though the choreography between her and Ugly-Mustache-Wearing-Mizu was interesting. I don't know much about Uesugi Kenshin or Takeda Shingen, but I like choreographed dance-battles.<3

Matsumoto-sensei seemed a bit unlucky. She had a big piece of hair caught in her eyelashes during one number, and then nearly fumbled her faux-towel thing during the other (though she made a very graceful save in the end, and didn't miss a beat).

The monk and cat-girl line dance just freaked me out.

Yep. That's all I'm going to say about the revue, for my own safety. ;)

~*~*~

Zorro

If it had ended with Kaze no Nishiki-e, I would have been safe and content with my decision to only see this show once, but.... Aaaagh. Zorro. Zorro. ...Zorro.

Mizu, Mizu, I'm sorry I haven't paid you much attention since you became top star; I don't care much for top stars. But I'm reminded now of why you and Yuuhi were my co-favorites for three years. SO HOT. And dancing. Dancing Mizu is all I really need to make me happy.

And I got it. Yay for mini-revues before and after the musical. I think I may have stopped breathing a few times when Mizu was dancing around in her Zorro outfit on the staircase. Ngh.

So! Plot! (With many warnings that this is based on one viewing, and my head was kind of muddled, because my brain kept repeating: 'Oh my god, oh my god.' I completely missed the Hamako storyline.)

Summary: )

What I Thought:

Yes please. Again.

All right, in all seriousness. )


So, revue was meh for me, but the musical was a!ma!zing! adventure fun, and I'll count the opening and finale of the musical as my heart's revue. ;)
ekusudei: (NBN - Tomu & Gun-chan)
King Solomon's Ring / La Mariposa
Snow Troupe, 2008

Stars: Mizu Natsuki & Shirahane Yuri

[ TakaWiki ] [ Stage Graph ]

I went into this one cautious but full of hope, because I have one of two reactions to Masatsuka-Sensei's shows (1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13) ... I either love them to pieces or I find them very dull. However, in general he's my favorite Takarazuka playwright/director. Strangely, the ones that I love are his talky, political ones, so when everyone started talking about how dull the play was, I perked up. And I wasn't disappointed in the least.

But that's jumping ahead, because first is King Solomon's Ring. Ogita Kouichi is another playwright/director that I enjoy. Babylon was the first revue show that I really fell in love with, and Romantica Takarazuka '04 is also beautiful and exotic-feeling. But Solomon... Solomon was like those two revues mixed together on speed.

King Solomon's Ring: )

La Mariposa: )

So, I think... Solomon might improve on DVD, but I didn't care for it. Mariposa is probably not going to have many fans among the foreign fan base, and will probably be boring if you don't speak Japanese. But it pushed all of my buttons and I simply adored it.♥

As an addendum, Snow Troupe seems to almost have too many big otokoyaku stars floating about at the moment. They'll need to keep doing original Takarazuka shows if they want to give them all a chance to shine....
ekusudei: (NBN - Tomu & Gun-chan)
King Solomon's Ring / La Mariposa
Snow Troupe, 2008

Stars: Mizu Natsuki & Shirahane Yuri

[ TakaWiki ] [ Stage Graph ]

I went into this one cautious but full of hope, because I have one of two reactions to Masatsuka-Sensei's shows (1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13) ... I either love them to pieces or I find them very dull. However, in general he's my favorite Takarazuka playwright/director. Strangely, the ones that I love are his talky, political ones, so when everyone started talking about how dull the play was, I perked up. And I wasn't disappointed in the least.

But that's jumping ahead, because first is King Solomon's Ring. Ogita Kouichi is another playwright/director that I enjoy. Babylon was the first revue show that I really fell in love with, and Romantica Takarazuka '04 is also beautiful and exotic-feeling. But Solomon... Solomon was like those two revues mixed together on speed.

King Solomon's Ring: )

La Mariposa: )

So, I think... Solomon might improve on DVD, but I didn't care for it. Mariposa is probably not going to have many fans among the foreign fan base, and will probably be boring if you don't speak Japanese. But it pushed all of my buttons and I simply adored it.♥

As an addendum, Snow Troupe seems to almost have too many big otokoyaku stars floating about at the moment. They'll need to keep doing original Takarazuka shows if they want to give them all a chance to shine....

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