Part Two on 'fighting my dreams'. World Tour 1st.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Given that this is my first time to watch their concert, I couldn't really describe the most fitting word on how it felt in general, rather it did manifest what you basically see in their concert DVDs... Not only the special effects, moving LED screens, most-awaited dance routines and setlist, but also the roaring excitement of an almost a thousand count of audience.

I arrived at the venue six hours before the show started, and there were already a number of fans waiting outside for the sponsored shop to start selling the tour's merchandise. Since this was the last leg of the group's 1st World Tour, The Japanese Broadcasting company NHK will be featuring a documentary video of the group's tour outside Japan. At that time, the banner that was used to welcome the ladies at the airport (that Friday morning) appeared the next day, as some fans from Team Singapore were sketching a cartoon version of the girls beside their printed version.

Filipino fan, Ronn (Nocchu in Perfume City Forums) was asked to write the famous Perfume-introduction of the girls ("Kashiyuka desu! A-chan desu! Nocchi-desu!") in dialogue bubbles for the cartoon Perfume sketches :)

The banner that was used in welcoming the girls at Changi Airport (last 23rd Nov, 5:30am+ +8GMT)

The NHK staff then asked us to write our messages to Perfume in different languages. While NHK is doing a clip of the people writing on the banner, I found myself writing in Filipino as well and gave them my support.

Me, writing my message in Filipino

I wrote: (in purple marker), "Please come to the Philippines! We love Perfume!" (my mind was blank and shocked so I couldn't write any other sensible message. LOL)

Minutes later, another team from AMUSE (Perfume's management company) were doing an interview for the fans not only from Singapore but also from the neighboring countries as well.

Me, Ronn, and two Filipino fans that came all the way from Philippines: 
(Ysabel, in yukata and Hadrian on black-framed specs)

We were then asked to represent Philippines by holding our flag printed in paper and asked questions like: Where did we find Perfume, What is their most popular song in the Philippines, Favorite member, Reasons why we like Perfume and our message to them... I never knew I'll be participating in such activities like this. But it was totally fun, at least. :)

After we bought some goodies, we went to this big container that came all the way to Japan for us to experience the works of Rhizomatiks in hologram style, the same team responsible for the awesome web design of the Perfume global website.

inside of this container! (photo and effort credits to Koji Kajima!)

Inside, we found in front view angle of the things that you can see on the website, like the Hurly Burly dance, and the Global Website introduction dance. The only difference is that, we see actual dance routine of Perfume dancing rather than the triangles. Side note: They were wearing pink costumes on that dance. (READ: not allowed to take photos.)

We still got a couple of hours to spend by eating and checking other stuff around the venue. I met new friends, fellow fans from Singapore, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and even those Japanese fans who flew all the way to Singapore just to see the last leg.

Our very own Singapore Pamphlet for the after-encore surprise!

I was tasked to distribute 50 pcs. of these fanmade pamphlet (see above photo) that we come up as a "surprise" after the encore. The drawing was made by Sakuya Ume. I know by this time, you've heard her name many times because she became an instant celebrity after the concert. :)

We went back to the shop around 5:00pm since it was the first call to queue up. I got the VIP tickets from 180 to 183 so I have to queue on this line. I finally got the chance to meet up some of the members from the Perfume City forums in just where I was standing. After that, I went up with my co-distributors of the pamphlet for another interview by NHK, and started to distribute them. 

This is too much exposure already!

Before the show started, some of the fans were then called by NHK team again to pose to include in the documentary. It was an all-out support by Singapore and the neighboring countries who attended the concert!

"Perfume desu!!!" (photo credits: Koji Kajima)

My ticket and the pamphlet, ready to kick ass! :))

We came inside the concert hall once the gate was open. Since the concert was an all-standing event, I felt that I needed to move some more in the middle,  but then the people in that part were taller than me so I settled on the left side near to the stage.

I can clearly see the girls good enough on this side. Really, really the perfect view for me, I must say.

The concert started in a huge LED screen where they featured different versions of the global website dance. There were about more than 5 versions gathered and the last one was turning to a compilation of the versions presented until it ended with the trademark Perfume LTW LE-album cover pose, just like in the photo above. After that, the lights went off, smoke machines generated, and fans were shouting and hooting in excitement as the "heatbeat" sound starts to air, until the music of the global website started to play again --this time the real Perfume dancing in front of us. The routine was so addictive. No lyrics, just hardcore dancing, awesome pacing, everything!

After the heated up-starter, they immediately switched to the arrangement of the setlist.

1st Set
コンピューター・シティ (Computer City)
エレクトロ・ワールド (Electro World)

Perfume on NIGHT FLIGHT (photo credits: SGcafe)

1st MC

The ever-famous "PERFUME DESU!" (screenshot photo from the JP tv news update)

The girls introduced themselves like the usual, and everyone in the audience shouted "Perfume Desu!", matching the trademark "peace sign" and applauded. They did utter English lines like "Perfume World Tour 1st, live in Singapore!" "Welcome to the Perfume World!" "Thank you so much for coming!" "Let's have fun!" and I really appreciated their efforts since they tried to communicate despite of the language barrier. Basically they were adjusting to the mood of the audience, as they thought no one would understand them in this country where English language is widely used but to their surprise, if not for majority, a good number of the audience can understand Nihonggo and I must say that a big portion of us were Japanese fans who flew all the way from Japan to watch the live concert. Perfume also greeted their fellow citizens who were watching in more than 60 theatres in Japan and 1 in Taiwan. All in all, we were not only just a thousand crowd, but counted as more than that. 

The girls told us a funny experience on their last tour's photoshoot. Aa-chan was acting as the photographer and storyteller and it was here when they needed a help from one in the audience to become the translator. This is the part where NOCCHi has passed a spare microphone to Ume-chan and flawlessly interpret every single word they say in English (well, technically Singlish (Singaporean English)). The act ended with a huge applause and admiration to Ume-chan. Even the girls themselves praised her high intellect. :)

Afterwards, A-chan has split the audience into three teams. The right side of the crowd was NOCCHi's group, in which they called "MER". The left side then (where I belong) was Yuka-chan's group which they branded it as "RAI" ( or LI) and the people in the middle was Aa-chan's group called "ON". It's an audience called "MERLION" in general,  pertaining to Singapore's famous trademark, the half-lion half fish mythical statue.

 The lights went off, smoke came in, and the girls positioned in for the next song.

2nd Set
4. レーザービーム (Laser Beam - JPN album mix)
5. Spending all my time
6. love the world
--a short segment of Butterfly (for their costume change)--
7. edge (triangle-mix)
8. シークレットシークレット (Secret Secret)

I really forced myself to forget the set list when it was leaked and revealed from the HK tour set, and surprisingly it worked because I was in total shocked after they made the costume change, and the intro of edge has started. I was in that complete jaw-dropped state. I continuously waved my hand when lasers were once again scattered like a madman. This edge version of the tour was made in such a way that it is convenient to their movement and equipment due to stage space constraints and I must say they REALLY PULLED IT OFF! It was a killer! The big LED screen (remember the photo where I show my distance to the stage) has split into 3 and also shows their life-sized bodies and huge faces (the same as in Disco! Disco! Disco! and Triangle Tour).  The dance routine was also unexpected, since it is a bit different than in the one we watched on the Triangle Tour. Also, Spending All My Time was pure gold.

The audience! (screenshot photo from JP tv news update)

2nd MC

The girls had a small talk on what would they like to see their ideal man dressed up. If you've known this info for too long, you might have noticed some people from the crowd who were taking on big headphones, V-neck shirt, skinny jeans or black-framed eyeglasses. They pointed out some guys on the said individual traits and generously, smilingly applauded for them since they somehow or rather possess these "essential" must-haves.

3rd Set
9. Dream Fighter
10.「P.T.A.」のコーナー (P.T.A Corner)
12. ねぇ (Nee)
13. チョコレイト・ディスコ (Chocolate Disco - LTW mix)
14. ポリリズム (Polyrhythm)

The PTA corner was rather a special portion of the show wherein they sang like an advertisement  of "how to brush your teeth" and "a survival dance", as well as a short version of "We Will Rock You." They said that even though they are an electropop group, they can "rock" sometimes. They made a call out of our then-group names respectively, (MER-LI-ON) before they do the song FAKE IT. Now I am totally convinced that,  this song is very essential to every live performances since it got everybody stomping off their feet and created a heated-up stage presence from the girls. (READ: NOCCHi looked very fierce and captivating!)

The Chocolate Disco was both mix of the original and that of LTW's, so it was a new sight for me to follow their new dance steps (which involves pouring glasses and mixing in a bowl-type). They paused in for a while to tell that their last song would be Polyrhythm, and I can even tell that the girls (especially A-chan) looked unsatisfied of how short the time was because it was so much fun. A-chan was almost about to tear up while they were dancing, and I could say, at that moment that her feeling of gratitude towards us fans are beyond measurable.

They went off the stage after that, and all of us were still clapping our hands as we wait for the Encore. One from the audience has started to yell "Mou ikkai!" ("One more time!") until everybody followed. Not far too long, the girls came back to do their encore, but before that, they said their individual speeches. They were happy to have this opportunity to go and perform outside Japan and make their international fans happy. By now, there are a lot of fans who translated these words from Aa-chan as an excerpt from her speech:

"30,000 people watched the streaming.

The reason to decide the world tour is that a woman asked us to come to USA again and have a concert during our stay in LA when we were asked out to join Cars2 premier. And we were also surprised at the fact that some people knew us. We never imagined it.

"I truly appreciate Tokuma. The music company gave us a hand when we had a hard time and protected us from vicious responses which happened while we were becoming famous. We were thinking of overseas expansion a few years ago and after cars2 we were considering it more seriously. Tokuma does not have an overseas marketing network unfortunately, so they kindly suggested us it was time for Perfume to go out.

"When we arrived at Changi airport at 5 am, tens of fans waited for us. Even if waiting in such an early morning is a must for your business, it is very hard. To be frank, we were told not to accept any presents at the airport not to cause any trouble, but I felt so happy to see the fans and I received all the presents with great joy.

"This is the first tour so you can imagine second. I am satisfied with first tour but not fully satisfied. Next time, I want to come and have a concert in a bigger venue."
(credits to ojisan of Perfume City for the translation)

They did expressed their gratitude to Tokuma and to Universal Music for letting this big break for them to happen. A-chan was a bit in tears and has made the audience cheer for them until to their encore songs.

their costume for the Encore. (photo credits: tokyohive)

15. Spring of Life 
16. 心のスポーツ (Kokoro No Sports)

Additional! (unplanned final encore)

It was epicly epic! MY COLOR was not actually included in their original setlist but they pleaded the concert team to do one more song, since they felt like doing so (given that this is the last leg of their tour, to somehow make it special I assume).

Perfume and special announcement with Doraemon! (photo screenshot from the JP tv news update)

Before the final encore, Doraemon made a special appearance and did an announcement that Perfume will be singing the theme song of Doraemon's movie called "Mirai no Museum" by March of next year.

Surprise surprise from the audience:
It looked like everything was over. The  lights went off and looked like where we first started, and someone again from the audience made his way to begin singing Polyrhythm as our surprise song from Team Singapore. Just in the time we were singing the part of "pori-ruupu, ruupu... " A-chan turned her microphone on from the backstage and said "Thank you." Afterwards, all of them said "We love you, Singapore!" and made such a remarkable memory to date.


We went to an after party with fans who attended and agreed on it. We decide to held it at Newton Circus. There was a box full of Kirin Hyouketsu waiting for us to devour, and it was  surprisingly nice! You'd never think that it is an alcoholic drink nor it even contains 3% of it! We yelled "Kampai!" for a successful concert by the girls and chat 'til midnight, shared our enthusiasm for the group.

Here are some pictures grabbed from friends:

(photo credits: Billy Djunaidi)

(photo credits: Koji Kajima)

"MERLION!" (photo credits: Peter Wong)

Koji and Takashi (#1 in the VIP queue!) (photo credits: Peter Wong)

The rest of the after-party crew! KAMPAI!  (photo credits: Koji Kajima)

In general, this girls really made me think that there are more wonderful things we can spend and share with the people we love. I was surprised that even Albert had a total change of views and admiration for the group. It was truly magical in some way because it did create some sense of teamwork that is truly inspiring. I can be honest when I say that I find it a bit discerning when majority of your friends teases you and often asks you if you UNDERSTAND every single word they say. Sometimes, you cannot just assume all of them will accept this unique interest you have (me, being that an aficionado of Japanese culture) wholeheartedly . They will even mock you for it. Whether you understand it or not isn't the main point here but rather, the thought of some people seemingly giving you a “weird stare” and constantly giving  you this “discouraged” feeling of liking such an act is truly frustrating. 

In the tour, I gained new friends, learned new things from them and it got me even more determined and inspired to study Nihonggo more than ever. I realized that it can be an asset for me to learn 2 or more languages  (the other being Mandarin) and it's nice to converse with kind and wonderful people whom you've met and enjoy the same interest with them from time to time.

Truly, attending in this concert is such a eye-opener for me. If there will be a Second World Tour to happen, you'll have to expect for me to be there and rockin' my ass off with you. :)

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