Funassyi Gets Its Own Concert at the Budōkan
posted on by Eric Stimson
Funassyi, the bizarre yet very excitable pear-based mascot unofficially representing Chiba Prefecture's Funabashi City, has amassed quite the fandom in Japan over the past few years, even eclipsing other, official yuru-chara (regional mascots). On April 1, it gained a privilege other yuru-chara can only dream of: a concert at Tokyo's famous Nippon Budōkan concert hall (which seats 14,471 people) on August 23. This will be followed up on August 29 by another concert in Osaka's Osaka-Jō Hall.
The announcement was made by a Universal Music spokesperson during a Line Live broadcast (Line Live is a concert information service). Funassyi, as usual, erupted in glee. It quickly realized, however, that it didn't quite have enough material for an entire concert. "I apologize, and this is a basic problem, but I can't keep summertime running for 90 minutes," it confessed. (Funassyi has released only two singles and one album.) "I can just prattle on for 30 or 40 minutes," it decided. "Sometimes I'll sing. Sometimes I'll fall off the stage." (Funassyi has performed at the Budōkan before, at Christmas concerts with the rock band The Alfee, and has gained a reputation for falling off the stage... twice.)
The Line Live broadcast garnered about 500,000 views in 30 minutes, along with 12,000 congratulatory and excited comments. Funassyi had expressed a wish to perform at the Budōkan in October 2013, and after three consecutive guest appearances at the aforementioned Christmas concerts, its wish for a solo concert has come true at last. "It's been five years since I came to the human world. I'm flipping out over being able to perform at the Budōkan without any backing. I'm flipping out with thanks, nashijiru bushaaa!" (This is Funassyi's ecstatic catchphrase.)
General seats for the concerts will cost 7,400 yen ($66), while children's seats cost 2,740 yen ($24.45). Funassyi's album made it to #4 in the Oricon weekly album charts, and the happy-go-lucky pear has attracted attention from British comedian John Oliver and CNN.
[Via Oricon Style]