“Even though on a tight schedule, it was a great start!”
-Shall we start to talk about your world tour from the beginning in order? On February 9th, your world tour has kicked off at Vk*concerts, Brussels, Belgium.
“First of all, I began in France and had did some press there. Then we headed to Belgium by car. I was so insecure because it was my first overseas solo concert. Despite my anxiety, the venue in Belgium was packed by and enthusiastic audience and I felt confident about this world tour’s success.”
-So you experienced a feeling of anxiety when you were arrived on site.
“Yeah. Actually, I made phone calls to my family and friends right before taking the stage. My family emembers were worried about me because I sounded down beat, they said.”
-What was your impression of Belgium?
“In fact, I only stayed there for half of day. It took us five hours to get to Brussels from France by card. It was tough for me since I rarely travel long distances by car in Japan. It was before Valentine’s Day, I had some chocolates which were delish. It was intensely cold there.”
-Sure it was winter-time in Europe. What was the capacity of the venue in Brussels?
“About 800, it was similar to Club Quattro in Tokyo. I wasn’t nervous with venu-size since it was like a small club but I was insecure. Not only did I want to have a great show on the first day of world tour, but I was wondering what kind of audience would come to my concert.”
-How was the crowd?
“Well they were really enthusiastic. Fairly it doesn’t matter what country I am in, the fance are all raging and much more excited than in Japan.
Actually, through this European tour I realized I need to “pump up” the Japanese audiences as much as them. Overseas fans are not able to grab all of my songs but they still support my live perforamnces with excitement and enthusiasm. Working harder will be my challenge.”
-Looking at the photos, it seemed a high proportion of the audience wore cosplays.
“Many people came in cosplays. I was thrilled that they researched and were inspired by my music videos and dressed up, I guess. Also I dropped by a local fancy goods store briefly. To be honest though taking five hours each way between Belgium and France back and forth, I was beat. That was my first day of world tour.”
-You experienced your tour’s “baptism of fire” immediately.
“Exhaustion and relief put me into sound sleep. (laugh) I was focuest on success of Day 1 show of the tour and if it went well that it would set the tone for the rest of the tour. I had no idea my show would be in the first place. Now I could breathe easily.”
-How much did you feel a good response?
“I was so excited and happy receiving their enthusiastic response who might watch my performance only on video-sharing websites.”
-February 10th, your show was taking place at LA Cigale, Paris, France. You visited Paris for “Japan Expo” last year.
“Right. The venue in Paris was huge and was a very cool looking place like “The Phantom the Opera”. Paris’s crowd in particular had a lots of cosplayers and was the most flashy among Europe, where Japanese manga culture has spread already in France. Also many female fans were pretty.”
-How was the show in France the day after you felt secure at the Belgium show?
“I had a hell of a lot of press before the show. I started to think “This tour is going to be a tough one.” a bit, but it was only in Europe. (laugh) A tough schedule, touring three countries together and doing numerous interviews killed me. I can’t believe I didn’t get out of shape due to such a tight schedule. I could hold out a week. However at the live show, many cosplay crowds had great spirits and I enjoyed myself with these fans. And we had relatively more free time after the show and press than other countries.
I went shipping and watched two shows, “Crazy Horse” and “Moulin Rouge”. These shows are really stunning. Both are naked adult-themed sensual performances but I was especially blown-away by “Crazy Horse”; the lighting lit up designs on the performer’s naked body. The nudity was artistically beautiful. Honestly Kyary-herself is far from sexiness however Iw as really impressed by the form of beauty. I wish I could do it somehow in the future.”
-You were inspired by the production lighting and staging in these performances, weren’t you?
“Yes. I basically checked over the lighting, music, and staging. That experience was an inspiration to me and a lot of fun. I went to watch Moulin Rouge with my backup dancers. I thought it was Sachiko Kobayashi-ish great flamboyant style show like Takarazuka razzle dazzle also. Even though I rarely ever go to cafes in Japan, I very often dropped by the cafes in France. (laugh) There are so many cafes in Paris I felt comfortable to go there. If I found one hour free time I would just go. So I became acquainted the next day, the waiter would be like “Hey! You again!” (laugh)
Then I was going to make and unscheduled appearance on a French TV show. In addition that TV’s crew told me “This show’s host is famous for being a quipster. Don’t be overly sensitive with his cynical jokes.” Actually it was a very popular nation-wide show. When I entered the studio, the audience roared “wow” to me.”
-(laugh) So you made and appearance on a big TV show suddenly.
“My appearance was fixed the same day. It was not a live broadcast but translation by a simultaneous interpreter was my first experience. I almost burst out laughing when I heard the translation of “Sushi and Kyary are the only popular Japanese things in France”, which joke was told by the fast-talking host.
-It’s like watching a foreign language comedy movie with earphones (laugh).
Another thing I was in France I put beret on in order to try my fashion fit in France. “JONETSU – TAIRIKU”, a Japanese TV show filmed me in Paris and we had shooting like I was drawing The Eiffel Tower in front of it and so on. Oh I rode on the merry-go-round too.
-It seems like you had freedom to do things on your own.
“Yeah, I did things as freely as I could. I was lucky to have time to do thing.”
-You looked like you fully enjoyed yourself in pictures.
“Oh yeah, I did. I really always enjoy myself when I am abroad on business despite being pretty busy and not having muhc time. Even on the road in Japan I go to exciting places during my time off. Overseas I explore cities with my crews like backup dancers.
-And then February 13th, you performed at 02 Academy in London, UK.
“I was extremely cold I was in a bad mood. It was much colder than France. Visiting Big Ben was the coldest of all, everybody got grumpy. (laugh)”
-There is beside Theme Rever.
“The wind was blowing strong and cold. I was filming a Japanese TV show “ZIP!” there. I said on camera “Hello, everyone watching ZIP!” with fixed smile. (laugh) I donned punkish hair while in London.”
-Did you bring in local fashion for each country?
“Sure I did. I like to do things like that. It was the first visit to London for me, I thought London was the most fashionable town among other countries where I have been.”
-Why did you think London was the most fashionable place?
“I was exploring in the city and found many Kawaii shops there. I shopped for a lot of stuff and maybe I bought three clothing too. Locals tried bringing me “French Harajuku” or “Harajuku in blar blarh” all over the world, any of them didn’t really hit me. However there are many Kawaii shops in London. Their fashion selections were very similar to Kawaii fashion taste of mine. Well I took the train but my reclinging seat was broken that made me really bummed out. (laugh) We went to London from Paris by Eruostar. And I enjoyed food in London.
It was the most delicious food for me in Europe. By the way on this World tour always TV camera crew has been covering me. “JONESTU-TAIRUKU”, “QUICK JAPAN” and Exclusive Special Program by NHK in the US. It was the first experience TV camera followed me anywhere anytime.
-How was the atmosphere at the show in London?
“The second floor was very close to the stage. The crowd type were punk kids, rock'n roll chicks … kinda ruged looking. Obviously many cosplays in each country, London had many high-fashion people too. I performed “PONPONPON” for the first time in a long time. This song’s costume made me look too young.
-Why did you perform “PONPONPON” at London’s gig?
“This show was sold out quickly. PONPONPON’s music video was so popular there that we changed the set list and put it as opening. Just to tell you, I got a pimple on my nose. (laugh)”
-You must have been really exhausted back then.
“Could be. I think that I am getting used to the exhausted feeling, almost numb. I am always tired in everyday life in Japan too. (laugh) I don’t realize how tired I am until I get a cold or sick and I realized I completely exhausted. I used to have a poor physique and got gastroenteritis or norovirus contamination easily but now I am healthier than ever. Although I had lost my voice in the end of last year.
-Well, how was your throat condition?
“I made it though in cold weather and almost daily performances though.”
-Good to hear that. Looking at live photos you looked amazing at London’s gig.
“I had performed with confidence at the time.”
-You got your confidence finally on third show.
“I got into my stride and becoming comfortable with European atmosphere.
-You changed often your stage costumes on this tour, did you?
At this time my costume exhibition, “Kyary Pamyu Pamuseum” was in session, we “borrowed” some of the costumes for the world tour. Yeah I was wasted during the after party in London. Drinking and dancing “Gangnam Style”. (laugh) My crew and I were all completely drunk, (laugh) looked so fun. Finishing up European tour I was going back to Japan, I just had fun that night.”
-Now I remember it was the first tour after you turned 20 years old, drinking age.
“That’s right. Being adult is more fun. Most of my management team enjoys drinking, I am hyper naturally even when I’m sober. Although I was not allowed to drink till 20 years old, I had a great time drinking with them at the after party.”