Anime Expo® 2010 Announces SOPHIA as an Official Guest of Honor

SOPHIA is Set to Perform at Los Angeles' Nokia Theater

Anaheim, CA February 23, 2010 – Anime Expo® is thrilled to announce today that the Japanese rock band SOPHIA is an official 2010 Guest of Honor. SOPHIA is set to perform at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday in the Nokia Theater. Along with their much-anticipated performance, SOPHIA will also participate in an attendee panel and autograph sessions. Anime Expo, the United States' largest anime and manga convention is scheduled for July 1 – 4, 2010 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

SOPHIA comes to Los Angeles to celebrate the 15th anniversary of their impressive career. Formed in 1994, the Japanese rock band consists of vocalist Mitsuru Matsuoka, guitarist Kazutaka Toyota, bassist Yoshio Kuroyanagi, drummer Yoshitomo Akamatsu and keyboardist Keiichi Miyako. SOPHIA has enjoyed much success through the years with the release of more than 15 albums and 35 hit singles. The band has embarked on over 40 tours, rocking out with fans all over the globe. SOPHIA has also shown great interest in promoting anime through their music. The band's single, Boku wa Kokoni iru, was used as an ending theme for the anime Kaleido Star.

“We feel that under the new and experienced leadership of SPJA President and CEO Michael Lattanzio the Expo serves as a great ambassador and platform for bringing Japanese culture to America. We are excited to support the efforts of Anime Expo by performing at this year's event,” said SOPHIA lead vocalist Mitsuru Matsuoka.

The band will feature several songs off of their latest album, 15, along with other hit singles during their July 3rd performance in the Nokia Theater.

Lead vocalist, Mitsuru Matsuoka, lends great star power to the fame of SOPHIA. He has been featured in several Japanese J-dramas like Koi wa Tatakai (Love & Fight!) and Yamada Taro Monogatari (The Story of Yamada). He also had starring roles in the critically-acclaimed musicals Nine and Titanic. Matsuoka-san writes much of his own music as it is important to embed meaningful messages within his lyrics.

SOPHIA joins Anime Expo's 2010 line-up along with famed director and seiyu, Shinichi “Nabeshin” Watanabe. To stay updated on all the latest Anime Expo 2010 news, follow us on Twitter, become a fan on Facebook, and check us out on YouTube.

About Anime Expo®

Anime Expo is located in Los Angeles and is the nation's largest anime and manga convention. The Expo serves to foster trade, commerce and the interests of the general public and animation industry. This event serves as a key meeting place for the general public to express their interest and explore various aspects of both anime and manga, as well as for members of the industry to conduct business. AX 2010 will be held July 1 – July 4, 2010 at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Southern California. More information can be found at

About The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation

The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to popularize and educate the American public about anime and manga, as well as provide a forum to facilitate communication between professionals and fans. This organization is more popularly known by its entertainment property, Anime Expo®. More information can be found at

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