Hatsune Miku to Appear in "Senbonzakura"-Themed Kabuki at Nico Nico Chōkaigi

posted on by Eric Stimson
Stars alongside kabuki actor Shidō Nakamura

It's cherry blossom season again, and folks from Kagoshima to Saitama are enjoying the picturesque pink blooms. Naturally this means there are other cherry-themed events coming up, including a combination of the classic kabuki play Yoshitsune Senbonzakura with the popular Hatsune Miku song "Senbonzakura."

The combo will take the form of a kabuki play called Hanakurabe Senbonzakura ("A Thousand Cherries: The Banquet of Now and Then") starring kabuki actor Shidō Nakamura and Hatsune Miku herself. While the theme of the play and song are quite different (and the plot of this play is not yet known), they are connected by the motif of senbonzakura, literally "a thousand cherries" but figuratively a good place for cherry blossom viewing. The play will also connect "now" and "then."

Hanakurabe Senbonzakura will premiere at Nico Nico Chōkaigi, a large-scale pop and Internet culture festival to be held at the Makuhari Messe in Chiba on April 29 and 30. As the convention is a celebration of Japanese culture, it includes representations of old-fashioned culture like sumō as well. The kabuki and film production company Shōchiku sees it as an opportunity to introduce kabuki to new generations, while the telecommunications company NTT sees it as a chance to showcase its Kirari! technology, which provides a greater sense of presence for the audience. Nakamura acknowledged Miku's fame but swore "not to lose" and to do his best to equal her showmanship.

The play will also be webcast live. "Senbonzakura" has also been covered by handsome voice actors and classically trained violinist Lindsey Stirling and inspired a novel.

[Via IT Media News]

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