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digidragon



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:04 pm Reply with quote
Flew under the radar, but there's this one with subtitles that came out recently. Not sure about any others...
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invalidname
Get off my lawn!Get off my lawn!


Joined: 11 Aug 2004
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:07 pm Reply with quote
I went to a panel on anime musicals a few years ago at Anime Central, and the presenter must have had at least a hundred clips on her laptop. She showed some "I can't believe this exists" clips (for example, Air Gear, on roller blades, as a sort of a downmarket Starlight Express), and then just took requests from the crowd. And there have been so many stage productions of Sakura Wars over the years, that you can just flip through a YouTube mix to see all the versions of "Geki! Teikoku Kagekidan".

As for the viability of this stuff, I wonder if you could take J-pop and Anisong concerts as a proxy measure. Aniplex did put out a DVD of the first AX Hatsune Miku concert, and several of her shows are on Crunchyroll. Then you've got the Love Live Sunshine "Happy Party Train Tour" concert movie with Aqours in US theaters next month, for which I've personally bought a $30 ticket and will be driving two hours each way to Detroit. The seat-selection screen suggested that the house was about 25% sold a month ahead of time, so it'll be interesting to see if this sells out, or at least comes close.

If people are interested in the music of their favorite anime, even with subtitles, that might suggest a further openness to the musicals as well. Although I imagine anyone who licensed this stuff (like your suggestion of Crunchyroll giving it a spin) would want to try the most popular stuff, like the Sailor Moon musicals, or maybe the Death Note musical that had Broadway's Frank Wildhorn doing the songs.
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samuelp



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:27 pm Reply with quote
I can say that I've discussed licensing streaming rights for anime musicals (tenimyu, yowapedal) with the appropriate rights holder and the rights are available.

One issue is there are no final scripts. There is the play script but the performances often have adlibs and deviate from the original so that's a challenge but other than that I think it's just a matter of no one caring enough to try.
The mg needed is a little high to help cover the music rights cost but nothing too crazy.


Last edited by samuelp on Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:29 pm; edited 1 time in total
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leafy sea dragon



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:29 pm Reply with quote
Besides operas, are there many stage plays that do international tours? I always had the impression that musical theater was really only meant to be seen in its home country and that they're not really viable when brought to another country, especially a country with a different primary language.

But yeah, all in all, musical theater is meant to be seen live, with the actors right there on stage. You can't replicate that experience on a screen. And I'm certain it'd be incredibly expensive to bring those actors, the backstage crew, and the props and equipment to North America or Europe.
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#861208



Joined: 07 Oct 2016
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:03 pm Reply with quote
There are fans who are interested in them. Go on the Tumblr communities for any fujoshi-targeted series, the fans will be talking about the stage plays. The fans know the stage play actors as well as they know the seiyuu, and follow them all on Twitter. They fansub and post clips of the plays. They get excited over the backstage material that's always on the DVDs.


Quote:
The video versions of anime stage musicals are not REALLY intended to be stand-alone product. The play itself is the product, and the various media being sold from it (DVDs, Blu-rays, CD soundtracks, photo albums, etc.) are meant to be souvenirs for fans who saw the plays.


And yet every other "Top Selling Anime DVDs/BDs in Japan" list has one mentioned as selling more than any anime that week.

This is especially true for Touken Ranbu. The stage plays have a different story than the anime, and there are several, so if you're just watching the two anime series, you're getting less than half the canon story. They even have figures of the costumes from the musicals.




Quote:

Besides operas, are there many stage plays that do international tours? I always had the impression that musical theater was really only meant to be seen in its home country and that they're not really viable when brought to another country, especially a country with a different primary language.


Always. In translation, too. Look at the website for any successful Broadway show, it will list a ton of international productions, that are performed in the local language.
Also, Frank Wildhorn (the Broadway composer that did Death Note) isn't well liked in English, but he's popular in Germany and Japan. Maybe his lyricists in those languages are better. Or maybe those countries just like cheesy things. (Japan definitely likes cheesy musicals. This is a thing.)

Edit: Thread in Crunchy forums to ask them about it. How else would you recommend asking Crunchy?
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EricJ2



Joined: 01 Feb 2014
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:21 pm Reply with quote
I'd watched a few SeraMyu on digisubs back during the first old 90's run--back when anime fans were left more to their own Internet devices--and while it's good to watch one or two (they never got better than the '97 SuperS and Stars musicals), you may find your interest waning by the time you get to the six or seven Prince of Tennis musicals.
The acting isn't subtle, the songs aren't Broadway inspired, and cosplay aside, not everyone looks realistic in iconic anime hair.

As a real answer, I'd say the reason is somewhere between
1) Those Darn Greedy Japanese-Holder Rights, which aren't always the same as the anime holders, and
2) The difficulty in subtitling song lyrics, which is why most simulcasts don't bother with OP/ED themes.

Kind of thought that would've been more explored in detail rather than "I dunno, but they're not doing it to be mean!" Wink
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Vee-Tee



Joined: 12 Aug 2015
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:58 pm Reply with quote
I remember befriending a girl on an anime forum years and years ago and she was really into Sailor Moon - she even got me an invite into several private discussion groups on LJ. One of which was for trading Sera Myu videos around (this was about 2002-2004?) and discussing the musicals, etc.

What was quite cool was that you'd have the people who did subtitling mingling with fans and answering questions about jokes or cultural references, etc... It was quite nice. I think my friend from the original forum had imported some of the musical CDs and stuff from Japan and would scan in her materials to share with the group. They were so lovely and passionate on that forum, it was one of my first communities on LJ I really got into. Very Happy
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DerekL1963
Space CowboySpace Cowboy


Joined: 14 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:45 pm Reply with quote
invalidname wrote:
As for the viability of this stuff, I wonder if you could take J-pop and Anisong concerts as a proxy measure. Aniplex did put out a DVD of the first AX Hatsune Miku concert, and several of her shows are on Crunchyroll. Then you've got the Love Live Sunshine "Happy Party Train Tour" concert movie with Aqours in US theaters next month, for which I've personally bought a $30 ticket and will be driving two hours each way to Detroit.


I don't know how reliable a proxy that really is however. While there's certainly overlap, J-pop and anime fandom aren't quite the same thing. In the same way, you can't really use a global phenomenon (Hatsune Miku) or a massively popular marketing machine (Love Live Sunshine) as a proxy for things that aren't equally far out on the bell curve. WUG certainly wouldn't pull the numbers that Aquors does, and they're the only other anime/IRL crossover band currently touring that I'm aware of.
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littlegreenwolf



Joined: 10 Aug 2002
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:02 pm Reply with quote
I'm still sitting here wonder why after two box sets in a row where the Japanee edition had the musical included, where is my Utena musical for the North American release? Is there a rights issues with the original theater troop, or do they honestly think the Utena fans buying these boxsets have no interest? I imported that thing on vhs from Japan in the late 90s. It's just a fantastic little bonus to the Utena collection, and it's part of the reason I'm not double dipping for the bluray release they're releasing this fall.
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Mr. sickVisionz



Joined: 28 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:35 pm Reply with quote
I never get the impression that these are made like The Lion King, which has won prestigious awards and had multiple runs across multiple years. They went in clearly trying to make something quality and succeeded critically, commercially, and with fans.

These plays never seem like that to me. They're often packed to the brim with c-grade celebs or the latest idol trying to make a name as opposed to people with experience or theatrical training. They just give the appearance of cheap cash ins as opposed to someone with like a real love of the story and a great vision for how it can be adapted theatrically.
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pachy_boy



Joined: 09 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:42 pm Reply with quote
Not a musical, but the only Japanese stage production video I know that got a legitimate western release was for Blood-C: The Last Mind digitally on Amazon. It was the first Japanese stage play I ever watched in full, and in my opinion not a bad first at all. It may have been low-budget, but that's part of what made it appealing as a Japanese-style play, and they made up for it with everything else that I really didn't care (the swordfights felt like they were choreographed for a movie rather than a play).

The Death Note musical I caught on a fansub, and that turned out to be way better than I would have ever expected. Not only did the songs work, but many of them were actually damn good in general. My only criticism was the blunt ending--it's understandable that they had to cut it off at a reasonable point since they were telling the core story in one 2-hour play, but compared to the movies/anime it didn't feel like it amounted to anything, like everyone/everything was literally saying "stop now".
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leafy sea dragon



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:51 pm Reply with quote
#861208 wrote:
Always. In translation, too. Look at the website for any successful Broadway show, it will list a ton of international productions, that are performed in the local language.
Also, Frank Wildhorn (the Broadway composer that did Death Note) isn't well liked in English, but he's popular in Germany and Japan. Maybe his lyricists in those languages are better. Or maybe those countries just like cheesy things. (Japan definitely likes cheesy musicals. This is a thing.)


Ah, that's pretty neat. So that means there's a pretty wide audience for musical plays not in the language of the people watching? Or are they typically translated in some way?

I admit I don't know much about stage plays, so count me in as part of that majority.

DerekL1963 wrote:

I don't know how reliable a proxy that really is however. While there's certainly overlap, J-pop and anime fandom aren't quite the same thing. In the same way, you can't really use a global phenomenon (Hatsune Miku) or a massively popular marketing machine (Love Live Sunshine) as a proxy for things that aren't equally far out on the bell curve. WUG certainly wouldn't pull the numbers that Aquors does, and they're the only other anime/IRL crossover band currently touring that I'm aware of.


Is Miku popular enough worldwide to be called a "global phenomenon"?

Mr. sickVisionz wrote:
I never get the impression that these are made like The Lion King, which has won prestigious awards and had multiple runs across multiple years. They went in clearly trying to make something quality and succeeded critically, commercially, and with fans.

These plays never seem like that to me. They're often packed to the brim with c-grade celebs or the latest idol trying to make a name as opposed to people with experience or theatrical training. They just give the appearance of cheap cash ins as opposed to someone with like a real love of the story and a great vision for how it can be adapted theatrically.


I figure it must be similar to how some people like art-house, third-world, and other forms of off-the-beaten-path cinema over the mainstream Hollywood stuff. Productions like The Lion King or Hamilton would be the equivalent of your billion-dollar box office Hollywood summer blockbuster, whereas these might be the equivalent of B-movies or something that Fathom might distribute. Those movies are still liked enough internationally that a lot of them are translated to other languages. (Then again, many such indie and ULB films were made with the possibility of being shown in other countries in mind thanks to the film festival circuits, whereas these musicals of anime adaptations don't seem like it to me.)
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#861208



Joined: 07 Oct 2016
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:56 pm Reply with quote
Mr. sickVisionz wrote:
I never get the impression that these are made like The Lion King, which has won prestigious awards and had multiple runs across multiple years. They went in clearly trying to make something quality and succeeded critically, commercially, and with fans.

These plays never seem like that to me. They're often packed to the brim with c-grade celebs or the latest idol trying to make a name as opposed to people with experience or theatrical training. They just give the appearance of cheap cash ins as opposed to someone with like a real love of the story and a great vision for how it can be adapted theatrically.


Do you know how many really good seiyuu were in TeniMyu before they became famous? A lot of them.


Also, 2.5D is sort of a specific niche of acting, and the actors that do it mostly have a following just for that. Of course, a lot of them also cross over into voice acting - Yoshihiko Aramaki, the stage actor for Kuroh in K and Yamanbagiri in Touken Ranbu, is voice acting in Sengoku Night Blood now, and I'm going to watch that just for him.

Also, the Tsukiuta stage play cast also has some like, TV series... not sure if it's a reality thing, or in-character, but people are really into it. Tsukiuta fans mostly like that more than the anime.

That's the thing... for most fujoshi-targeted series nowadays, the anime is such a low-tier entry in the franchise... the drama CDs and music are the main thing, then the video games, then the novels/manga, then the stage plays, then the anime. But the anime are the only parts that ever get translated or exported, and the people who aren't already familiar with the story and characters tend to be like, "What is this? I don't get it." ...well, yeah, because it's a spinoff of something you've never seen. All anime gets simulcast pretty much by default nowadays, so that's the only reason we even get that. If they want any of this to be well received outside of Japan, they need to export something other than just the anime.


............ if Crunchy added the Pythagoras concert clips from the RejetFest events, I would be so happy... and the concert clips from other series, too...

leafy sea dragon wrote:
#861208 wrote:
Always. In translation, too. Look at the website for any successful Broadway show, it will list a ton of international productions, that are performed in the local language.


Ah, that's pretty neat. So that means there's a pretty wide audience for musical plays not in the language of the people watching? Or are they typically translated in some way?



Fully translated.
If you've never seen this, please do.

(Also most opera have subtitles, either on the backs of the seats (so you can choose your language) or on a screen above the stage. In Japan, they have vertical titles to the sides of the stage. I saw Carmen in Japan and I could understand most of the lyrics in French and read most of the kanji in the subs, I was so proud of myself.)
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EricJ2



Joined: 01 Feb 2014
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 4:38 pm Reply with quote
Mr. sickVisionz wrote:
I never get the impression that these are made like The Lion King, which has won prestigious awards and had multiple runs across multiple years. They went in clearly trying to make something quality and succeeded critically, commercially, and with fans.
These plays never seem like that to me. They're often packed to the brim with c-grade celebs or the latest idol trying to make a name as opposed to people with experience or theatrical training. They just give the appearance of cheap cash ins as opposed to someone with like a real love of the story and a great vision for how it can be adapted theatrically.


The Sera Myu's and bits of Death Note I've seen always struck me as something between very good professional organized cosplay, and that time the 80's Ninja Turtles went on their stage-show, quote, "rock concert" tour.
It's a marketing stunt for fans curious to see what favorite anime characters would look like in real life, and has a few good songs, but that doesn't make it Broadway's Shrek Musical.
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omiya



Joined: 21 Sep 2011
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Location: Adelaide, South Australia
PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 5:20 pm Reply with quote
Different again but I saw and really enjoyed Nana Mizuki starring in a Tokyo production of Beautiful - The Carole King Musical and would love a blu-ray release. (Nana Mizuki alternated with Ayaka Hirahara in the role of Carole King).

Official trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zF_zs2Ry_4I

Also, anime singer/lyricist/composer Chiaki Ishikawa has also appeared in the musical play "Kagerou Pain" featuring her songs, and "Sin of Sleeping Snow" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzTlNqSLA6k (which is available on DVD).


Last edited by omiya on Fri Sep 22, 2017 5:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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