(Originally posted on my blog).
Village East Cinema was the most popular venue for the Aqours concert–according to management–and I’m not surprised.
The seats were packed to capacity and some people even sat on the floor.
Love Live means a lot to me and I realized it meant a lot to others, as well. People lined up at least two hours before the show began and some people even came in cosplay.
I wish I got pictures of the cosplayers–they looked great! My Dad told me that one of the concert goers flew over to New York to see the concert– that’s dedication.
I brought my Kotori Minami ita bag and the concert-goers adored it. A photographer took a picture of it and I hope to see it online shortly. But for now, here’s a picture of the updated bag. I think it needs more Kotori. What do you guys think? It was my first ita bag and I’m having trouble with safety pins showing. I think more merch can cover them up.
Tangent aside, Aqours is the sister group of Muse, the group from the original series. Aqours, like Muse, focuses on nine girls as they become experienced school idols. Aqours is sometimes divided into three subunits, each with their own theme. On the subject of color, each of the girls also have their own theme color and the audience changed their penlights based on the girls on screen.
The theater streamed day one of the concert a week after the performance in Japan, live from a satellite.
The highlights of the concert? For me, it had to be the sub units.
Guilty Kiss jammed out with their microphones. Azalea’s performance featured three of the girls infront of an electronic, floral backdrop. I remembered CYaRon for their stylish, plaid outfits and adorable rendition of Yozora wa Nandemo Shitteruno. One of the girls traced her finger in the air at one point (I believe it was Chika’s seiyuu/voice actress), and made a beautiful star on the screen.
There were intermissions between a few songs as the group changed into different costumes. The first few intermissions were so-so. The stream included an audio drama with chibi animations. The concert streamed without subtitles and many of us could not entirely enjoy the audio drama. I was lost during most of it. The chibis looked…adorable , funny, but awkward. They were essentially floating heads with frames around them on screen. In future concerts, I’m hoping that there will be subtitles.
For fans of Aqours, a moment on day two stood out the most–this spread on social media among fans and all of the audience were still impacted by it. Rikako, the actress of Riko, had only a few months to train on the piano, on top of learning the dances and songs. On day two, the pressure became a too much for her and she cried on stage. In Japan, the entire audience, thousands of people, made their penlights light pink, in honor of Rikako. Chika’s seiyuu, the leader , and the other members ran up to Rikako and encouraged her. Back at New York, a week later, the audience also made their penlights pink and cheered her on. Omoi Yo became Rikako’s song then. I would’t be surprised if people made their penlights pink for this particular song during future concerts.
Will there be a future Aqours concert in the Village East Cinema? Based on the attendance, I think so. A tour is already in the works in Japan for this summer and I think it’s likely that there’ll be another screening.
Between the series, game, songs, and most of all, the fandom, Love Live has impacted me. Because of it, I’ve met new friends, made many YouTube videos, and also became more active on the blogging community. It did take time for Aqours to grow on me as a group, but one thing is for sure: they are not Muse. The group has their own identity and in this concert, they were able to shine.
For the curious, here is the set list of the concert, courtesy of of the Love Live Subreddit user, Somewhatmorespecial:
- Aozora Jumping Heart
- Koi ni Naritai AQUARIUM (followed by introductions)
- (Interlude 1)
- Kimeta yo Hand in Hand
- Daisuki Dattara Daijobu
- Yume de Yozora wo Terashitai
- (Interlude 2)
- CYARon (Genki Zenkai DAY!DAY!DAY! , Yozora wa Nandemo Shitteru no)
- AZALEA (Torikoriko PLEASE!, Tokimeki Bunruigaku)
- Guilty Kiss (Strawberry Trapper, Guilty Night, Guilty Kiss)
- (Interlude recapping events of episode 1-9, leading to…)
- Mijuku DREAMER
- Omoi yo Hitotsu ni Nare (this, wow)
- Todokanai Hoshi da to Shitemo
- (Interlude recapping episodes 12 and 13, followed by a LIVE performance of the stage show at the end of EP13)
- Mirai TICKET
- Kimi no Kokoro wa Kagayaiteru Kai?
- Pops Heart de Odorun Damon!
- Yume Kataru yori Yume Utaou
- (Closing address)
- STEP! Zero to One!
Thanks so much to the people on the Love Live subreddit, for sharing what happened on day two.