ekusudei: (Masaki Jump!)
Do you want to go to Masaki's last ochakai in Tokyo on August 14th? Please let me know a definite yes or no ASAP (like, by June 2nd), because I am an idiot and the deadline has snuck up on me and staff already hates me for getting all my other forms in majorly late and I still need to find someone to help me with the transfer. But, er, yes, it's 8500 yen. I'll pay 3000 yen out of the 8500 for anyone who wants to go, and you don't have to get the other 4500 to me until the night of the ochakai. Also, my birthday is the 13th, so how sad would it be if I didn't have anyone to drag along with me? (*is shameless*)
ekusudei: (Moon Troupe)
1789 -Lovers of the Bastille-
Moon Troupe, 2015

Top Stars: Ryuu Masaki & Manaki Reika

[ TakaWiki ] [ TCA Pictures Press: shopping links and preview video ]

This is a bit delayed... Erm. To be honest, my Zuka watching has slowed to a crawl since I left Japan. Going back to grad school, then getting a new job and a new apartment haven't really helped the financial angle much. I told myself not to get any CS recordings because I wanted to spend the money to support Masaki, so... Delay. But then I did get the Blu-ray for this show a couple of months ago. I ordered it just before she announced her retirement, so when it came it kind of went on the bookshelf for a rainy day. And then I pulled it out one day when I was sick and miserable and... I should have expected I would have a sour opinion of it after slipping in and out of sleep while watching it. ^^;;; So, I waited until I was in a better mood to watch it again. Which was today!

I was so out of practice, really, that I was watching it all wrong. Which means what, you wonder? I'm not saying there is a wrong way to watch Takarazuka, don't worry. Just there there is a wrong way for me to watch it. See, I've missed so much over the last four years, and to be honest my enthusiasm for Masaki's Tsukigumi has never been what I would like. They moved in a bunch of actresses who I was pretty meh about, and a lot of their current "new hope"s are really not my type. So every time I see one of Masaki's shows as top star there's a part of me going "meh." And this makes me very sad. But today I spent the entire show peering around and catching sight of all of the Tsukigumi-ko that I miss so much. And then I watched all the alternate angles and did it again. And they were there, lurking in the shadows and the edges of the screen. Spending all that time in Japan opera-glassing has truly spoiled me, I admit. I was also a bit pre-disposed not to like 1789 because I watched a bunch of the French music videos and went "ugh," and because I really and truly found Romeo & Juliette to be so awful I couldn't even find the energy to hate it. (Yes, I realize I may be the only person in the fandom to feel this way. But, come on, the lyrics were insipid.) I've been trying to censor myself while Masaki is still in the Revue, but the hell with it, we're close enough to the finish line now, I guess.

So, okay, a lot of negative stuff all out of the way. Now, having watched it a couple more times I will freely admit that it has not only grown on me, but that I've come to enjoy it. Let me explain the seriousness of my change of heart: I was bummed I bought the Blu-ray and not the DVD, because that means I can't rip it to make myself a soundtrack for my ride to work every day.

The changes they made to the music for Takarazuka made it a little more to my taste (still a bit too electronic-y in places, but not as bad). So many of the costumes are reworked from ScaPim that it's not even funny. Am I crazy, or is one of de Polignac's first dresses Margarite's pink dress with a few extra flowers and bows? (Actually, now I'm looking at her still photo that someone put up on TakaWiki and it definitely is, you can see the gold beadwork on the front panel.) Anyway, not a problem for me! Many of Masaki's costumes weren't my taste, but all of the other costumes were pretty awesome. Chapi and Suzuna's wigs were all awesome, ditto the whore brigade's. I'm not as much a fan of MiyaRuri's, and I'm hoping its only appeared again at the NOBUNAGA press conference because she hasn't had time to shop for something new.... The sets weren't hugely striking, but the larger props were pretty neat (the cross and stained-glass windows in the cathedral, the carts at Palais-Royal, etc.) Some of the choreography was a bit weird, but I think a lot of that was because they adopted some of it from the French musical? I really loved the choreography in the final scene with the stage rotating and all of the cast singing, that was neat and kudos to KAORI. Really was not at all impressed by the pair dance choreography. I know Masaki's a pretty weak dancer, but that was just lame. But I guess that's what you get when you have a J-pop choreographer doing your pair dance? A strike against TETSUHARU. (Kids these days and their all-capsy, Romanji artistic names. *grin*) I think both of these choreographers were new to the Revue, so it's interesting to see what works and what doesn't. And, finally, the stage makeup continues to follow the darker, more subtle hues with brown undertones. Which was actually a bit weird because I think the stage lighting had some blue tint to it and combined with the HD of the Blu-ray I felt like a lot of the actresses were on the brink of death. It made them look very tired and it was harder to hide mistakes. (Was it just me, or was there one short scene where Chapi didn't have the screen or whatever they call it at the front of the tall wig fastened down all the way against her skin? It was wrinkling up and making her forehead look a bit wizened.)

All right, on to the plot. Actually, I'll point you to the blurb on the TakaWiki. Has anyone not seen the show yet who wants more detail? If so, I'll add more here. Otherwise I'll spare us all the ink. ;) In general, I enjoyed the story. The Revue loves their French Revolution, no shock there. The story itself... isn't really a story. I mean, there are a couple threads of plot going on, but a lot of it just kind of goes: FLASHY DRAMA, ILLEGAL PRINTING, ANGST, HOT IRONS, VIVA LA REVOLUTION, no, but i'm just the king, do you like my locks model guillotine. what?) You don't really spend a lot of time with any particular set of characters enough to really feel for them, with the exception of Marie Antoinette, and that's mostly just because Chapi is awesome. All that said, it's entertaining, there are a lot of chorus scenes (I think the chorus had more quick changes than the main cast in this show), and the music was catchy like an ear-worm so that I came to enjoy it. It's a spectacle, just like it says on the tin. Just don't watch it for the "romance" (awkward).


So! Let's play Tsukigumi-ko Love!

Touka Yurino (de Polignac) never ceases to amaze me, and she pulls out another great performance here. Not only is she a superb actress, she also got the etoile during the parade! ♥

Wait, no, back up a moment for some Senka love. Because Mishiro Ren rocked as King Louis XVI. She is definitely comfortable as Senka now, and woah did I have a double-take when she first came on stage because she looks so much like Natori Rei that it's a bit eerie. And I can't forget that Saou Kurama (Danton) was Senka already in this show! So weird to think of her as Senka, but I hope it gives her lots of great roles. This one was not a huge challenge for her, I think, but she had a couple nice stirring songs and a romance with Ronan's fallen sister which was very sweet.

Masaki was so very Masaki throughout this whole show that it just squeezes my heart. She's not a fabulous anything, but she has so much love for her job and so much awkward charisma that she just kind of Masakis her way through everything. And Ronan is a very Masaki role, so it all works out well. Except I felt like she had -200% chemistry with Saotome Wakaba. Ugh, what were they thinking? SO AWKWARD. I think she ate her ear in one scene. Anyone who saw this live, was Masaki any better with Umino? Also, that torture scene? What was that? No, seriously? I don't think I should be giggling when my hiiki is being branded. T-T

Okay, this was Maggy's last show as a tsukigumi-ko, and she didn't even make it into the parade lineup properly? U SUCK HANKYU. After the first act I was also a bit angry that she had no stage time, but they made up for that a bit in the second act. Also, she was a bit too enthusiastic with the whip but what can one expect of Maggy?♥

SERI (Marat)!!! Was actually in line and singing on par with a lot of the "star" otokoyaku during their numbers, and that made my little heart glow. Seri is awesome. I really hope she doesn't retire with her douki.

RUUTAN (Necker)!!!! Had a very distinguished wig. Oh my god, is she really that much of an upperclassman? This kills me every time. Anyway, her acting was great.

MiyaRuri, who I hope we keep forever and ever, but I wonder with Tamakichi becoming top (still, Kuze Seika held on while Amami Yuuki was top!), anyway despite the horrific hair she was really having a good time hamming it up as the over-the-top villain (Count of Artois). Who apparently has a God Complex. Truly. XD And they gave her the nibante "theme song reprise" bit during the revue bit at the end, which made me super happy.

Really angry that Hibikichi isn't listed as a named character on the web site, because she was all over the place being awesome and is clearly Doctor Guillotin on the Blu-ray and in the programme. So there.

I'm just going to put all the print shop workers here, because they were also awesome (And turned up all over the place as soldiers and prisoners and such, so their psychology bills must have been enormous). A lot of them also didn't show up on the web site, boo, hiss.: Toshi (Jacques) was so deadly serious and lovely and not ever in the camera's view, Man-chan (Yves) was EVERYWHERE with her spiky black hair of doom (I would so have joined her revolution), Yuuki (Michèl) had very red/pink hair, very French (??), Karan (Julien) will forever be that one in the back, but she is still SO CUTE, how can she be so cute at ken-11?

Azusa (Lucile) managed to be one of a handful of musumeyaku with a named role with lines and worked as a semi-plot device helping Solène get off the streets. As a ken-12 musumeyaku, I'm glad they gave her this much for her last show.

SPEAKING OF MUSUMEYAKU. Let's just take this spot here to mention the other ones, shall we? Chapi was quite simply amazing. She brought a depth to her character and a subtle emotional palate that was just amazing. Plus her singing! When did it become so solid? Also, she has a swan neck of doom. You cannot avoid it in act II. It's almost freakishly long, it really is. Anyway, staying on track: Gorgeous performance. Gorgeous singing. GORGEOUS stage makeup! In the Blu-ray recording, Harune Aki plays Solene. I was so happy. Like, tears happy. This girl who stood out amid the crowd in the dance scenes in Rose Prince is suddenly center stage being amazing. Girl, you deserve it. You deserve more, really. Why are you not properly star-tracked? I hope it's because you don't want to be. (side note: I WANT TO SEE HANAHI MIRA'S SOLENE. WTF, HANKYU!!!? If this were otokoyaku sharing a role, you know there would be a digest at the very least, if not its own release. Not cool. I need to track down the CS senshuuraku recording when it airs this summer.)

Shimon (Ramard) and Mayupon (Tournemain) were hilarious. If they keep giving Shimon roles like this, I won't throw too big of a fit. Although that scene where they were going over the ginkyo with the lanterns (in the "Bastille") was totally re-using gags from LUNA. I mean, I know it's been a few years, but Tsukigumi fans don't forget that easily, Koike-S.

Yukarino Koyuki really rocked as Charlotte, and Maihina Kanon's Louis Joseph was surprisingly touching, if a bit stock.

I promised myself I would bite my tongue about negative comments about actresses, but this isn't really negative so much as hilarious, because Akatsuki Chisei (Fersen) ...? Hilarious. Was she terrified? Had she just had plastic surgery? WHY DID HER FACE NEVER MOVE? Why was she mysteriously grimacing for the entire show? I know there must be more to her than this, and it's not fair to judge on one performance of a huge run, but... really? This baby is who they chose to play glorious and subtle Chapi's love interest? Not judging, not judging, she gets a few more strikes, I promise.

What else? Joe! Joe was always hovering on the edges of everything♥ Nacchan and the other upperclassmen onnayaku were really and truly awesome as the ladies of the night. I wish the camera spent more time on them. Moeka Yuria got a little spin dance duet with Masaki in one of the Palais-Royal scenes that made my heart glad because douki♥ Zawa was also everywhere. Oh my god, I remember when she was the little baby who was absolutely last and at the bottom of the Tsukigumi list. XD Hoshina Yutaka was making the most hilarious angry grimaces while in prison. Bless. And, despite being in about three scenes in the entire show, Hanahi Mira did get to walk down the center in the main parade with Harune Aki and Tamakichi.

And I could go on incoherently for ages, but let's take it as a given that Tsukigumi makes me happy♥
ekusudei: (Masaki Jump!)
The official Takarazuka Revue article on the retirement press conference is always pretty cookie-cutter, so I'm not bothering to translate that one (i.e. - Revue rep says "She was a great asset," retiree says "I loved my time, it was very meaningful, thank you to my fans for their support, I haven't decided yet what I will do after retirement, but I want to give my all for my remaining time with the Revue.").

But I liked the Daily Sports Online article. Wish I could have been there for the press conference.

[ Article with photos ]

+++++++++++++++++++++

Ryuu Masaki, Her Reason for Retiring: "To Prepare for Marriage"

Takarazuka Revue Moon Troupe Top Star Ryuu Masaki held a press conference at a hotel in Osaka City on the 16th, where she told us that "like my name Ryuu (Dragon), I want to continue to climb high until the very last second of the last minute." She also clearly stated that her reason for retiring was "to prepare for marriage!" However, when asked about who she might marry, she replied with an impish smile: "I'm not sure yet."

Read more... )
ekusudei: (Default)
puck-poster PUCK / CRYSTAL TAKARAZUKA
Moon Troupe - Tokyo Theater
December 2014

Leads: Ryuu Masaki & Manaki Reika

[ TakaWiki ] [ Daily Sports photos ] [ Asahi photo gallary ]

So, eight years ago I watched and reviewed Suzukaze Mayo's version of PUCK. It was cute, but not the kind of show which I fell in love with. And, indeed, over the years I've become less and less enamored with Takarazuka comedies. I was... less than enthusiastic when I found out Masaki would be doing Puck, and that it would be the 100th anniversary show I would end up seeing because of the timing. But I reminded myself that this might be the last time I would get to see her on a Takarazuka stage, and then I reminded myself that I fell in love with cute, adorable, ken-3 Masaki -- How often does a top star get to play an adorable role like Puck? This was the enormous smile that I first fell for. And, lastly, I think we can all agree that there is a magic to live shows that makes them more special than anything we watch only on DVD.

All of which means that in the end the musical grew on me. Certainly, I felt the romance more than I remember feeling it in Suzukaze's version. And that romance made me happy♥

Anyway, summary can be read on the TakaWiki. It's one of Koike's earlier productions, but even twenty years ago the majority of his shows were serious, dramatic pieces. This one tends to stand out. In his notes in the program, he mentions that at the time (summer of 1991) he had written and directed Great Gatsby, which got some grumbles because people felt that as a summer show it didn't match with the Hankyu theme park Family Land, which used to be beside the Grand Theater. Puck, Koike notes, was his "revenge"--a show that families could see over summer vacation in 1992. Apparently it turned his wife (who had never seen a Takarazuka show before then) into an instant Suzukaze Mayo fan, but Koike's own two young daughters preferred the summer fireworks. ;)

Someone else became a fan of the show, although she never saw it live. Masaki bought the soundtrack (back then they recorded the entire shows and released them on cassette and CD, similar to how they do the 2-acts today) and fell in love with the show, listening to it over and over again and memorizing all of the lines. When she became top star, she went to the theater management and to Koike and begged to be able to revive Puck.

Well, with all of that backstory, I think I appreciated the show even more. *grin* I saw it five times: three times as planned, then once from tachimi, and an amazing Christmas gift from a wonderful friend of a ticket to see closing night.

So! On to the review: )

Overall, recommended for current Moon Troupe fans, for fans of ridiculous Takarazuka comedies, and for fans of A Midsummer Night's Dream.

IMAG1059 CRYSTAL TAKARAZUKA

So, Crystal Takarazuka is by Nakamura Satoru, who is that rare beast who still does an even mix of musical performances and revue shows. Actually, recently he's been doing more directing of special performances and revivals of other playwrights. But a lot of people know his Manon. I also really liked his The Labyrinth of Loving You and Somewhere in Time adaptation. His Dance Romanesque grew on me.

In fact, Crystal Takarazuka has a lot of parallels to Dance Romanesque, including the folk/fairy tale scene, the young otokoyaku pop scene, and the lovely modern dance group number. Check out the Wikipedia page for a run-down of the scenes.

Things which really made me happy about this revue include: the chuzume, the chuzume, the chuzume, and the otokoyaku staircase number.

The chuzume was a Latin bit, using songs by the Gypsy Kings. Shockingly, none of the music was cut for the DVD/blu-ray release. Why did this scene make me happy? Because it was classic Asako, including a resurgence of costumes from Apasionado. Because it meant Masaki trying to make Asako's patented sexy-Latin-face while wearing said ridiculous costumes. Because she pulled it off. Because one day I was dead-center, first row in the balcony and sexy-Latin-face-Masaki looked right at me that part of the balcony for a large portion of the scene and winked at me us. Because I think my heart may have exploded out of my chest about fifteen times. Yes. That.

I also enjoyed this revue because Chapi may be Dancing Queen, but we are not so far behind her. Masaki's dancing has improved enormously in the past 2.5 years. I am so proud of her! I almost didn't have my heart in my throat waiting for her to fall down the Grand Staircase. Except then she said that she's (still) terrified of going down the Grand Staircase and I got my heart in my throat again. Poor baby. We are still not Mariko, but we ARE a Top Star♥♥

And Hayami Sei had an amazing moment with Masaki in the modern dance number that made me literally squeal the first time I saw it. Thank you, Nakamura-S, or Hirasawa-S, or whoever decided to give her that for her last show. You rock a lot.

Umi made a lovely etoile. Now I just have to actually remember her face. (For some reason right now we have an over-abundance of long-faced, mature-ish looking musumeyaku. I think this is awesome, but I cannot tell any of them apart. *weeps*)

Overall, this revue is awesome. Okay, okay, if you're not a Moon Troupe fan you may find it pretty standard Takarazuka fare. But I loved it. Even the obnoxious young otokoyaku pop number was bearable because An-chan was in it.



I was so happy I could be there for Yuumin's last show, and for An-chan's last show with Moon Troupe. The Moon Troupe in Puck was almost unrecognizable to me at first, with all of the retirements and transfers in the past three years. But then I looked deeper, and I realized that Moon Troupe will always be Moon Troupe.
ekusudei: (Moon Troupe)
Arsène Lupin / Fantastic Energy!
Moon Troupe, 2013

Top Stars: Ryuu Masaki & Manaki Reika

[ TakaWiki ] [Daily Sports Online photos ]

Well, okay, we all know I'm enamored of Masatsuka-Sensei's hard-boiled musicals, even though they appear to send every other foreign fan fleeing in the other direction. Masaki's final shinko lead was a Masatsuka-sensei show, so I was curious to see how she would appear in one of his lead roles six years later. (Oh my god, has it been seven years?) Overall, I enjoyed it. I'll admit, however, that even for one of his convoluted plots, this one was super-convoluted. Usually I can follow the hook; this one left me lost on the finer details, and even after skimming through the script there are a few that are still hazy, but I think this was Masatsuka-sensei being subtle. Or, rather, even more so than usual. Save us all. This is what I love about his shows, but it can also be extremely frustrating. All of that said, take my summary with a rather large grain of salt.

Speaking of, I swear I was just going to write a quick summary, but somehow it got away from me.

Summary )

What I Thought )

Overall, I'll repeat what I usually say about a Masatsuka-sensei show: If you don't like his shows in general, then this one is probably not for you. Usually I either really love a Masatsuka-sensei show (Who Is Bad?, La Mariposa, Scout), or I really dislike it (Too Short a Time). It's not often that I like it in spite of itself (although I might argue that case for Last Play). I think that tends to happen when I like the dialogue and certain scenes, but I'm not crazy about the plot in general, and there aren't any outstanding song or dance numbers.


Fantastic Energy! )

Um, can you tell I can't decide how I feel about this show? I didn't fall in love with it, but... it wasn't terrible? I was super-happy to watch Masaki rocking the revue "S."
ekusudei: (Default)
Too Short a Time to Fall in Love / Heat On Beat!
Moon Troupe - National Tour, 2012

Stars: Ryuu Masaki & Manaki Reika

[ TakaWiki ] [ My Review of '06 Too Short ] [ My "Review" of '09 Heat On Beat! ]

I'll admit that when I heard Masaki would be doing these shows I was less than thrilled. Both of them had been sayonara performances, and trying to squash any top star into another's sayonara performance is a lot like trying to shove an elephant into a Volkswagon Beetle--It just doesn't fit. Add to that the fact that most of the chemistry in Too Short is between the top star and nibante, and Wataru and Touko had had so much history to give that even more poignancy at the time. Finally, well, to be honest I had been disappointed by Chapi in R&J. Juliette is a pretty shallow character and just the sort I really dislike the top musumeyaku doing, and it undid all of the good vibes I had built in Gypsy Baron for her spirited (if a bit hysterical) Violka. Frankly, I was concerned this trend would continue. Which is perhaps why I haven't had the nerve to watch the DVDs that have been collecting dust on my bookshelf. The other reason is that I have no one to watch things with, which takes most of the fun out of it.

But I finally decided I was getting a bit ridiculous, two years into Masaki's run as top star. So, I begin.

Too Short a Time to Fall in Love

Summary: )

What I Thought: )

Heat On Beat!

(See TakaWiki for scene descriptions.)

What I Thought: )
ekusudei: (Default)
Better late than never! Finally got a bit of free time to play catch up, so I figured I would start with some (slightly more) recent things. Quick translation, as always.


Translation )
Original Text )
ekusudei: (Masaki Jump!)
Moon Troupe Top Combi Talk
Always Keeping Our Feelings Vibrant...

Masaki Ryuu x Reika Manaki
(Kageki - July 2012)

Wherein Masaki makes Chappi cry. A lot. )

Top Star

Feb. 14th, 2012 04:49 pm
ekusudei: (Default)
Well then, there you have it. I suppose I've been expecting something along these lines since Scarlet Pimpernel, so no surprise. I just hope my suspicion this means an early retirement isn't true.

Kinda cool to see them pulling some of those 70s and early 80s molds out again, with almost-sorta double-tops.

Not so sure about Romeo and Juliet, but on the plus side, I haven't seen it yet so I'm not personally sick of it. ;)

Manaki Reika impressed me in the Algiers shinko; she's grown a lot. Still think she's a better match for Mirio, though. If anything, that may be my only gripe out of all of this, and leads me again to believe in an early retirement.

But, hell, she did it! First top star from the 87ths<3 Hell of a lot of work. Congratulations, Masaki-chan.
ekusudei: (Default)
*Laughs* I was going to annotate this translation with explanations of various things, as usual, then realized it was going to get out of control, so I just wrote out a large mass of comments at the end.

Graph Special Feature
Request Talk Vol. 1: Ryū Masaki x Asumi Rio

GRAPH — May 2011

—Last year we asked readers what pair or group talks they would like to see,
and this time we bring you one of those requests, Ryū Masaki and Asumi Rio—


Read more... )
ekusudei: (Default)
*Laughs* I was going to annotate this translation with explanations of various things, as usual, then realized it was going to get out of control, so I just wrote out a large mass of comments at the end.

Graph Special Feature
Request Talk Vol. 1: Ryū Masaki x Asumi Rio

GRAPH — May 2011

—Last year we asked readers what pair or group talks they would like to see,
and this time we bring you one of those requests, Ryū Masaki and Asumi Rio—


Read more... )
ekusudei: (Moon Troupe)
Prince of the Land of Roses / ONE

Leads: Kiriya Hiromu & Aono Yuki

[ TakaWiki ] [ Mainichi Photos ] [ Daily Sports Photos ]

Well.... I didn't instantly fall in love with this show. I'm rather 50/50 on it at the moment. There are things that I really enjoyed, and things that entirely failed to appeal to me, so that I have a hard time condemning it or praising it. To compare, though, it's my least favorite of Kiriyan's three Daigekijo shows so far.

I thought it was interesting that Kimura-sensei said that he chose the theme particularly because he wanted to make a show that would appeal to children, since it would fall during both spring break and Golden Week. Kusano-sensei was more focused on tailoring the revue to Kiriyan, whom he has liked since he worked with her as an underclassman in Hanagumi.

Prince of the Land of Roses:

It was nice to see a fairytale; at a time like this, a fairytale with a happy ending is sorely needed. And I've been hoping for another Takarazuka fairytale for a long time. The sets were lovely and very well done. The story, and the focus on Belle, was sweet. The choreography with the large ensemble was cleverly done and visually impressive.

For me, however, the music was lacking. Aside from one of Belle's solos, no tunes or lyrics that really stuck in my head, and nothing that brought tears to my eyes. Sad, considering most of the dialogue is in song as well. I kind of weighed it against Kimura's Gu Bijin and found it lacking, I guess, although the stories are so very different it's hard to compare them.

I was also really disappointed by the costumes. I understand why they did what they did, because going in and out of full-on make-up jobs/costumes would have been difficult, and too much color would have ruined the uniform nature of the costumes which made the big synchronized dances so cool. But, still... I was so looking forward to colorful animal costumes. On the other hand, the amount of thought that went into their individual character creation was pretty fun -- each person holds their free hand specifically to represent the hoof/claw/paw/wing, etc. of their animal.

Kiriyan's Beast was as sweet as you'd expect. Amusingly, the little children in my seating area were squealing in fear and fun over the Beast's costume. Marimo's Belle was fantabulous. Masaki's King was a deliberate diversion from the usual sexy villain, and, in fact, Kimura told her not to think of herself as a villain, but as a straightforward and rather blind character. To be baldly honest, not the most interesting of roles, though she did come out with some of the more elaborate costumes♥

Kumicho looked good in her goatee. Magee & Touka made amusing evil step-sisters. Morie was exactly what she tried for -- a fairytale nobleman with lovely hair. She said she brought a comic book to the wig maker to show exactly what kind of wig she wanted. Mirio was a cute white tiger.

I only saw the show once, so didn't really have a chance to find out many in the ensemble. Did finally memorize the eye-marks on Rizu's mask enough to be able to tell her apart from the other birds. The birds were all entirely adorable.

ONE:

I think maybe this revue will grow on me when/if I see it again in Tokyo. As it was, I'm afraid it just didn't really push many of my buttons.

Exception #1 is the Unicorn number, which just about everyone--fans and seito alike--seem to be listing as their favorite. It calls out to the 12-year-old girl in all of us, I think♥ Magee said it makes her cry. *grin* It's just pretty, and I LOVE the stars, and the flashlights and the choreography, and the music, and the story♥

I think I would have liked machine-gun Masaki a lot more if I weren't so overly-sensitive about swathes of bodies at the moment. On the other hand, hurrah for miraculously escaping the horrid "American" costumes.

Exception #2 is Masaki singing the nibante solo on the ginkyou.

Exception #3 is Masaki in real nibante feathers in the finale parade.

Other good things of note: Lots more lovely Kiriyan/Marimo pair dance loveliness, and a very nice otokoyaku in tuxedoes stairdance number. Also. Ken Ruisu getting her hands all over Marimo in the Heartjack scene♥ Yay for taidansha getting prominence!

I felt like there really wasn't enough Sonoka, but people tell me it's there.
ekusudei: (Moon Troupe)
Prince of the Land of Roses / ONE

Leads: Kiriya Hiromu & Aono Yuki

[ TakaWiki ] [ Mainichi Photos ] [ Daily Sports Photos ]

Well.... I didn't instantly fall in love with this show. I'm rather 50/50 on it at the moment. There are things that I really enjoyed, and things that entirely failed to appeal to me, so that I have a hard time condemning it or praising it. To compare, though, it's my least favorite of Kiriyan's three Daigekijo shows so far.

I thought it was interesting that Kimura-sensei said that he chose the theme particularly because he wanted to make a show that would appeal to children, since it would fall during both spring break and Golden Week. Kusano-sensei was more focused on tailoring the revue to Kiriyan, whom he has liked since he worked with her as an underclassman in Hanagumi.

Prince of the Land of Roses:

It was nice to see a fairytale; at a time like this, a fairytale with a happy ending is sorely needed. And I've been hoping for another Takarazuka fairytale for a long time. The sets were lovely and very well done. The story, and the focus on Belle, was sweet. The choreography with the large ensemble was cleverly done and visually impressive.

For me, however, the music was lacking. Aside from one of Belle's solos, no tunes or lyrics that really stuck in my head, and nothing that brought tears to my eyes. Sad, considering most of the dialogue is in song as well. I kind of weighed it against Kimura's Gu Bijin and found it lacking, I guess, although the stories are so very different it's hard to compare them.

I was also really disappointed by the costumes. I understand why they did what they did, because going in and out of full-on make-up jobs/costumes would have been difficult, and too much color would have ruined the uniform nature of the costumes which made the big synchronized dances so cool. But, still... I was so looking forward to colorful animal costumes. On the other hand, the amount of thought that went into their individual character creation was pretty fun -- each person holds their free hand specifically to represent the hoof/claw/paw/wing, etc. of their animal.

Kiriyan's Beast was as sweet as you'd expect. Amusingly, the little children in my seating area were squealing in fear and fun over the Beast's costume. Marimo's Belle was fantabulous. Masaki's King was a deliberate diversion from the usual sexy villain, and, in fact, Kimura told her not to think of herself as a villain, but as a straightforward and rather blind character. To be baldly honest, not the most interesting of roles, though she did come out with some of the more elaborate costumes♥

Kumicho looked good in her goatee. Magee & Touka made amusing evil step-sisters. Morie was exactly what she tried for -- a fairytale nobleman with lovely hair. She said she brought a comic book to the wig maker to show exactly what kind of wig she wanted. Mirio was a cute white tiger.

I only saw the show once, so didn't really have a chance to find out many in the ensemble. Did finally memorize the eye-marks on Rizu's mask enough to be able to tell her apart from the other birds. The birds were all entirely adorable.

ONE:

I think maybe this revue will grow on me when/if I see it again in Tokyo. As it was, I'm afraid it just didn't really push many of my buttons.

Exception #1 is the Unicorn number, which just about everyone--fans and seito alike--seem to be listing as their favorite. It calls out to the 12-year-old girl in all of us, I think♥ Magee said it makes her cry. *grin* It's just pretty, and I LOVE the stars, and the flashlights and the choreography, and the music, and the story♥

I think I would have liked machine-gun Masaki a lot more if I weren't so overly-sensitive about swathes of bodies at the moment. On the other hand, hurrah for miraculously escaping the horrid "American" costumes.

Exception #2 is Masaki singing the nibante solo on the ginkyou.

Exception #3 is Masaki in real nibante feathers in the finale parade.

Other good things of note: Lots more lovely Kiriyan/Marimo pair dance loveliness, and a very nice otokoyaku in tuxedoes stairdance number. Also. Ken Ruisu getting her hands all over Marimo in the Heartjack scene♥ Yay for taidansha getting prominence!

I felt like there really wasn't enough Sonoka, but people tell me it's there.
ekusudei: (Moon Troupe)
*swoon*

Location shots are night shots of Kobe in a suit, and in a pool with roses.
ekusudei: (Moon Troupe)
*swoon*

Location shots are night shots of Kobe in a suit, and in a pool with roses.
ekusudei: (Masaki Jump!)
Mixi has failed me, but I found some posts on bulletin boards.

Seems she sang the expected songs from past shows, as well as Latin, Jazz, and Beatles.

Apparently there were a lot of seito there♥


Ahhhh, the 22nd is too far away.....
ekusudei: (Masaki Jump!)
Mixi has failed me, but I found some posts on bulletin boards.

Seems she sang the expected songs from past shows, as well as Latin, Jazz, and Beatles.

Apparently there were a lot of seito there♥


Ahhhh, the 22nd is too far away.....
ekusudei: (Default)
So, so, I was kind of holding off on announcing it until I got a good look at the back of Kageki to confirm myself, since there have been false alarms in the Masaki communities for a few months, but it's official -- she's getting her first Kageki cover in December!

And..... yesterday I went with friends to get the December GRAPH (for Masaki's pin-up, of course), and guess what? We were happily shocked to see that she's getting the January GRAPH cover, with Chigi!♥ I love all these douki covers she's been getting. First Tomomin last year, now this. So soon after October is a surprise, although of course it'll mean an even longer wait until the next cover in 2012....

But now it's 5:15 and I'm going to miss my train!

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