Interview: THE [email protected] CINDERELLA GIRLSby Dylan Kielman and Zac Bertschy,
THE [email protected] is a massive mixed-media pop franchise that needs very little introduction. With more than a decade in the limelight, dozens of games, a handful of well-received anime series and countless live idol events, THE [email protected] has long held its place among the most revered idol franchises in history. At Anime Expo 2017, the group known as THE [email protected] CINDERELLA GIRLS debuted for the first time in North America (and for the first time anywhere outside of Japan), with a live performance as part of the Anisong World Matsuri in front of thousands of screaming fans wielding penlights at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. We got a chance to sit down with Takano Asami (Frederica Miyamoto), Iida Yuko (Kanade Hayami), Yoshimura Haruka (Mika Jougasaki), Tomoyo Kurosawa (Miria Akagi), Rei Matsuzaki (Kirari Moroboshi), and Hiromi Igarashi (Anzu Futaba) ahead of the big show to ask them about how they felt about performing in America for the first time!
ANN: Are you excited to perform in the United States for the first time and would you want to perform here again?
We are really excited to meet all the producers in Los Angeles, and we're really excited for tonight!
Have you gotten a chance to see the sights of Los Angeles, where else in America would you like to visit?
We went to the Hollywood Sign, In-N-Out Burger, and did some tourist sightseeing. Unfortunately we didn't know about Animal Style at In-N-Out but we want to try it now!
For Rei: Which American baseball team do you like the most?
Rei: I'm not sure if I have a favorite team but I am a huge fan of the baseball player Aoki and would love to support his Major League debut as a fan!
For Tomoyo: Your song Romantic Now has its roots in rap music. Do you have any favorite American rappers?
Tomoyo: I unfortunately don't listen to much western rap *laughs* but I am a huge fan of Slipknot and Justin Bieber!
For Yoshimura: How has your character (Mika) being a role model for Tomoyo's character (Miria) in the television series affected your real life relationship?
Yoshimura: I feel our real life relationship is like that of a senpai/kouhai. Tomoyo's character is really young but also mature and in a way Tomoyo has been helping me mature in real life. I really respect and adore her pureness and innocence! I feel we have been bonding not only in the anime but in real life too!
For Takano: Your character Frederica Miyamoto is half French. Do you have any favorite French pastries and would you want to visit France someday?
Takano: My character is born in France but raised in Japan, so I myself don't know much about France or French pastries but I would love to visit France one day and eat as many delicious pastries as possible!
For Hiromi: Your character Anzu is an idol who sleeps a lot. Do you sleep as much as she does, or is that an exaggeration?
Hiromi: (in English) Yes!
For Iida: Your character Kanade is very cool and composed especially in regards to her song Hotel Moonside. Is it hard to stay in character during exciting moments when you're performing live?
Iida: I have no problem performing on stage, even during exciting moments. I have no problem staying cool and composed, but when it comes to recording CDs, I sometimes get too passionate and the director needs to tell me to cool down! *laughs*
Now back to a group question -- are you all surprised by the level of enthusiasm for THE [email protected] here in America?
We've received messages via our blog and there are many fans from America that have left us messages saying how excited they are excited to see THE [email protected] for the first time in North America!
Being the first time in America do you have a message for all the international fans?
Since this is our first time in America and Los Angeles we were thinking of speaking a lot in English but we realized that wouldn't be good, because the fans are most excited to hear us in Japanese. We would love to learn more about America through our fans, and to our international/global fans: please support us from the bottom of your heart!
For my last question, do you have a message you hope all the fans/producers that came to LA this weekend for your concert take from your performance?
Asami: Let's have fun together!
Yuuko: I hope everyone seeing us live for the first time really enjoys our performance! I'll try my best!
Haruka: I'm really excited for the reaction from all the American producers in attendance!
Tomoyo: I'm really excited for how passionate our fans are and I'm really excited to perform tonight!
Rei: I'm really excited for the reaction from the fans and producers, let's Happy Happy together!
Hiromi: I've been wanting to come to America for a long time and cannot wait to perform tonight. I'm hoping people tonight who have never heard of THE [email protected] before become huge fans from our performance!
Thanks to THE [email protected] CINDERELLA GIRLS, Anime Expo, and Anisong World Matsuri for this opportunity.
Anisong World Matsuri Website: http://anisongworldmatsuri.com
Anisong World Matsuri at Otakon 2017
Date: August 11 & 12
Venue: Washington DC Walter E. Washington Convention Center
Concert Info: https://www.otakon.com/concerts/anisong
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