I think this is the first time Mich and I have ever worked on a trip report together? But then again, this is also the first time we’ve ever watched a butai together! Even though we’ve known each other since… 2006? Anyway, there will not be a Kakumei DVD this year, so we’ll try to write down as much as we can remember~
This year, we only went to two shows because we lost the senshuraku ballot. Our seats also seemed disappointing at first, but after watching the shows, we realized that they were actually pretty good!
- January 27 @ 18:00, 1st floor, N row, center
- January 28 @ 13:00, 2nd floor, C row, right
Anyway, onto the show!!
Opening: Imperial Theatre New Century
When the lights dimmed, Ishigaki-kun on our right (piano) and Goto-kun on our left (violin) started playing their duet. As the beats kicked in, they showed scenes of Takki from previous Kakumeis on the big white curtains. Soon afterwards, the Jrs danced their way onto the stage, followed by the female dancers. They huddled together in the middle of the stage, waving their arms into the air, trying to distract our eyes from Takki’s silhouette that was on the translucent curtain.
☆ Brand New Year
When the translucent curtain lifted… Takki finally made his grand entrance!!
He was wearing a new red flowery jacket, red pants, black top and a glamorous crystal necklace (which was REALLY kirakira!). Behind him, the Jrs danced around a ballet bar (that was about waist-high) as the stage rotated in a counter-clockwise direction. Takki joined them for a minute of song & dance before walking to the front of the stage for his opening speech.
Thank you everyone for coming to the show today. I am Takizawa Hideaki… Please enjoy Shinshun Takizawa Kakumei 2012.
After his speech, he finished the rest of the song. Yuma, Tottsu, and the rest of the Jrs queued the audience to clap along with the music (but my rhythm was quite off because it’s hard to multitask when you’re staring at Takki lol). Immediately after Brand New Year ended, SHOW began.
Takki sang the first chorus of SHOW before handing the stage over to Yuma and hurrying backstage to change. (My binoculars were chasing after him as he ran to the side of the stage and I could see him flinging off his jacket before he disappeared… it was so kakkoii!) Not long afterwards, Takki reappeared from the left side of the stage wearing last year’s gold SHOW costume, except minus the feather shoulder decoration. The rest of the performance was similar to last year’s.
Futari no Yoru
Wearing the same outfit, Takki performed Futari no Yoru. (I personally love this Japanese/Shamisen remix of the song, but it’s quite short…) As soon as Takki started singing the beginning verse, a huge flight of stairs was pushed onto the stage and standing on it were a bunch of Jrs holding shamisens. One of the Jrs (Miyadate-kun?) came onto the stage with Takki’s shamisen and Takki walked over to retrieve it as soon as he finished singing. With his back facing the audience, Takki put on the shamisen and began tightening the strings to tune it. And as soon as he turned around, the shamisen performance began~
It’s not very often Takki plays an instrument, especially a guitar, so when I finally got to see him play the shamisen in person… Inside, I was squeeing like mad! It was so kakkoii!!!! Especially the solo part where his fingers were moving so quickly around the neck of the shamisen… it looked like he was a professional!
☆ Shinshun Japanesque
When Futari no Yoru was over, Takki ran backstage to prepare for Ai Kakumei. This Wafu STOMP section was performed by the Jrs. They tap danced with geta (Japanese wooden sandals). Yuma then walked in from the left, and started singing that song with the dragon dance… not sure what the title of that song is, but there’s a line that goes “hyakunen tattemo kawaranai~~”. He ended the song with a tap dance, and the lights went out.
☆ Ai Kakumei
The piano intro played while a curtain of water fell from the stage ceiling, and Takki appeared behind it wearing a new gold & silver costume! But he had two wired attachments at his waist so he was ermmm… dangling in mid-air? XD Anyway, even though it looked kinda awkward, it was really cool when the water curtain opened and closed according to Takki’s hand movements!
As soon as Takki finished his “Girl Loves Boy kara hajimaru no desu” phrase, the steel airplane appeared on stage behind Takki! They lowered him down onto a flat platform on top of the plane and he stood there for while, before they lifted him up again. He flew left and right… before landing on center stage.
The Jrs went to unhook the two wires at Takki’s waist and attached another wire to his back. Before he entered the second chorus, he turned slightly to his right, ran to the edge of the stage and took off, flying over the audience~
We were sitting at row N, so we knew he wasn’t going to fly above us. But even though we knew that, every time he flew towards our direction, my heart just went “DOKI!” and skipped a beat hahaha… Anyway, when Takki landed back on stage, the Jrs unhooked him and he turned around to introduce Nikki-san before he left the stage.
1 – 1 : Pirates of the Forest (Mori no Kaizoku)
☆ Kushimoto Bushi
Nikki-san went through his usual introduction on the story of Takizawa Kakumei (We’re not sure how accurate this is, but this is what we understood from other fans’ Kakumei reports):
A long time ago, the Queen and Nikki-san both worked together to protect the peace & harmony in the seas they lived on. However, the Queen wanted to dominate the seas and she was willing to exterminate anyone who got in her way. She waged a war against Nikki’s clan, but eventually Nikki’s clan lost and were exiled to the forests of Kiinokuni.
As Nikki-san was speaking, the little Jrs dressed as monks came down the 1st floor aisles… In our first show, we were sitting by the aisle and in front of us was this young guy and his mom. Well, one of the little monks stopped in front of the young guy’s seat and stood there staring at him with a stern, yet expressionless face! LOL! We tried so hard not to laugh, but it was so awkward and the poor guy looked so uncomfortable! XD
☆ Kakumei Overture
During Nikki-san’s intro, another spotlight was on Hideaki who was behind the translucent screen. He was standing at the front of the boat, wearing the white & red “deep V cut” costume. This year, Hideaki was the only person on the boat and he was moving around, preparing the ship for sail. When the screen lifted, he began singing “Try Again~” (I like this part cause it shows off how strong his voice can be ^^)
deep V-cut costume #1… fufufu
After singing the verse, Hideaki said he wanted to return to the sea. In the dark, Yuma climbed up the stairs to the top right. When the light shone on him, he called out to his brother, saying he could see the sea from where he was, and that that is where their mother’s enemy lies. He then slid down the rope across the face of the stage. Hideaki, Yuma, and Nikki-san had their little adlib conversation, before the princess made her appearance. Yuma talked a lot this year, and we were laughing at the funny sounds he made~
Anyway, this year, they didn’t call the princess “Hime.” Instead, they called her by her real name, which was Haruka. When Haruka made her appearance, she was dressed as a guy. She wanted to follow them on the ship, but Hideaki didn’t want her to. Yuma tried to help persuade his brother by naming all the ‘useful’ things Haruka could do for them… like (counting his fingers) “cook, wash clothes, take care of me (ore no osewa), take care of me, take care of me… ah, take care of you too, Aniki….”. Hideaki interrupted him, “Do them yourself!” lol.
But they managed to convince Hideaki in the end, and Yuma and Haruka both did the “yossha” pose before climbing up the ship. After Nikki-san gave Hideaki the sacred sword, “Captain Hideaki” (fufufu~) led the boat out of the forest!
1 – 2 : Sea of Kumano (Kumano no Umi)
☆ One Night
The performance hasn’t changed at all. But this year, there were only three people on the ship (Yuma on the left & Haruka on the right). They were both sleeping when Hideaki sang the song~ When they woke up, they had already reached the sea.
Evil Green Team Attacks
However, as soon after they arrived, the whale (God and protector of the seas) attacked their boat. Then, on the far left and right sides of the stage, the evil green team (led by Tottsu, who was their Daishougun or commander-in-chief) appeared and attempted to kill the whale. Tottsu recognized Hideaki, but Hideaki didn’t know who he was. This was when Hideaki found out that the evil green team was sent by the Queen – the Queen who killed his mother and exiled Hideaki’s clan to the forest.
Tottsu challenged Hideaki to a fight. They had a plank-like platform next to the boat. Hideaki jumped onto the plank and killed a few bad guys before disappearing. Soon after, Haruka was taken hostage and Yuma jumped in after her. Then Hideaki reappeared again and fought a couple of bad guys before his ship caught fire and he was forced to jump into the sea.
☆ Urashima Tarou
The dancers hooked a wire onto Hideaki and he started getting “tossed around at sea” (above the audience). Like last year, he flew to the right, pulled a piece of board from the side panel, flew to the left, dumped the board somewhere and continued to fly back and forth as he slowly sunk to the bottom of the sea.
The stage lit up and the chibi Jrs came out singing the Urashima Tarou song. Yuma appeared from the left and walked around the dancers. Hideaki finally landed at Ryugujou and looked around, saying “Where is this place?”
1 – 3 : Underwater Sea Palace (Ryugujou)
Yuma began bowing to the dancers next to him and he kept saying “doumo~ doumo~” in a cracked and girlish voice lol. Upon seeing this, Hideaki said “Yuma! What are you doing?” and then he grabbed Yuma’s arm and started dragging him off like “Come on, we gotta get outta here!”
But they were stopped by Nikki-san (now acting as the Manager of Ryugujou lol), who appeared from the right side of the stage with a chibi Jr translator… and then all of the sudden, Nikki-san started speaking a string of English! XD
Nikki : Welcome to Ryugujou, Mister Takizawa.
chibi : Ryugujou e yokosou, Takizawa-sama.
Nikki : Team Yorokobi is waiting for you.
chibi : Chiimu yorokobi ga anata wo omachi shiteimasu.
Nikki : Come on, follow me.
chibi : Saa, tsuitekite kudasai.
And with that, they all ran off stage lol
Demo ne… it was quite funny and actually quite thoughtful for them to add English into the show this year. Even though it wasn’t a lot, I think it still made overseas fans feel a bit amore welcomed? And it was so adorable when Takki turned around and we could see his shoulders shaking in laughter!
☆ Yume Tamago ☆ Yuuki 100% (a.k.a. NYC Songs)
Yuma with chibi Jrs performed “Yume Tamago”, followed by “Yuuki 100%”. The medley and performance is rather similar to NYC’s performance at the recent Kouhaku. Yuma also did a backflip before the last chorus.
☆ Water World
The coral-like props in the background opened up and there was Takki, wearing the black suit that he usually wears for the magic corner! I don’t think this performance has ever changed? lol~ It ended with Takki doing the quick costume change from the black suit to the white tuxedo. Tottsu started singing “I’m dancing deep in the water world… “, and Takki danced with the ballerina (this year being Haruka)… throwing and catching her like past years.
Speaking of… I’m always so jealous of the princess! She gets to (literally) fly into Takki’s arms… But I also find it hilarious when Takki flings her around like he would with that magic floating table and that makes me feel less jealous? XD
☆ King of Dance
Last year and the year before, they did ‘DEEP’, but this year, they changed it back to ‘King of Dance’ which was performed in 2009. Most of the song was performed by Nikki-san, but there were a few adorable Takki moments! After dancing one verse of it, Takki would go over to the left side of the stage and sit down at a table, with the dancer girls all kneeling before him (like he’s at a hostess club or something lol). They would pass him a wine glass and he would pretend to drink out of it.
Well, in our show, Takki took like 5 or 6 shots from the wine glass and he leaned back in his chair like he was drunk! Then he covered his mouth like he was about to throw up and took off his hat and “threw up” in there! XD It was so adorable and those dancers were so lucky!
Also, after the 28th show, Mich and I were giggling over Takki’s “monkey” dancing. At first, we thought he was just exaggerating his dance moves to be funny, but after looking through our binoculars, we realized that he was really being serious! BUAHAHA~ ma, we all know he’s not the best dancer in the world… Sometimes, he can totally rock it, but sometimes those imperfections are what makes him so cute ^^
Floating table & Juggling
Takki’s floating table trick is starting to get a little old? ^^; And I think they realize that too because as Takki was doing the trick, Nikki-san kept teasing him by gasping and yelling out things like “What?!” and “EHHH!” lol
Anyway, as Nikki-san did his ball juggling performance, Takki ran off stage to change. This year, Nikki-san got the audience involved in the performance too. He would purposely drop one of the balls into the audience and whoever caught it had to throw it back to him. After juggling in the dark (with neon balls), the lights came on again, and we knew it was Miracle World!
☆ Miracle World
This is one of our favorites (and also one which is super hard to coordinate both clapping & looking at Takki at the same time lol). Takki appears in his usual pink coral outfit. Yuma was in blue and Tottsu was the crab this year! XD
On the 27th, it was a special “jump through the water screen” performance ne. Takki pointed at Yuma to jump first. Then, Takki got the heart shape and Tottsu got the difficult crab shapes. But all of the sudden, the water screen created a picture of a panda and the Chinese words “新年快樂 萬事如意.” We were quite shocked, thinking that it was a special message for the Chinese fans in the audience, but we later found out that the message was actually for the Chinese ambassador (and his family) who attended that night’s show~
It was really cute on the 28th too~ Usually, Takki would point at Yuma to jump first… but this time, he told Tottsu the Crab to go first! At that point, Yuma kinda knew that if he didn’t go second, he would be last and get all the difficult shapes, so he immediately walked to the front of the water screen. But Takki pushed him aside like “Oh no my friend, I’M next. You’re last lol” So after Takki jumped through the easy heart shape… it was Yuma’s turn and he got a bunch of tiny “human” shapes and crosses XD It was zettai muri to successfully jump through and not get drenched! hahaha Takki sempai, you’re so ebil! XD
At the end, the 3 of them had to do a final series of jumps together. Takki was in the middle, Yuma on the right, and Tottsu on the left!
Well, even though this segment has been there since the very first Kakumei, we don’t seem to ever get sick of it! ^^
After all the fun, Nikki-san appeared again from the right side of the stage. Yuma said that he wanted to stay there and that he would come alone if his brother didn’t wanna come with him. Then Nikki-san presented them with the Pandora’s Box. Hideaki kept warning Yuma not to take the box, and that it could be dangerous… but Yuma didn’t listen because he and Nikki-san were too busy ‘whispering’ loudly and laughing at Hideaki lol (the sounds they made were really funny~)
As soon as Yuma said “itadakimasu” and took hold of the box, everyone froze, the lights blacked out and everything went silent. The spotlight was shining on Hideaki and only he could hear the Queen’s voice as it echoed through the darkness. “Hideaki. Haruka’s in my possession now. Don’t worry, she’s still alive. But if you want her back, come to Hikaru Chikurin.”
1 – 4 : Glowing Bamboo Forest (Hikaru Chikurin)
☆ Shadow of Dried Leaves (Kareha no Kage)
Mich has seen it before but it was my first time watching Kareha no Kage live. I remember feeling really impatient when the Jrs came out and did the Hikaru Chikurin intro. I just kept thinking “Shut up and get off the stage! I wanna see Takki!!” lol
But when Takki finally came walking out with the bright light shining behind him… ahhh it was so hard to breathe XD demo ne~ Watching it on TV versus watching it live… it’s really different. At the theatre, the music was really loud, so you kinda felt enveloped by the beat and Takki’s voice. It also felt so surreal to see him (the real person!) dancing in front of me!! But what really killed me were those biceps ne lol
Anyway, the only difference in this year’s performance was that, apart from the different background dancers, there was echo added to the last line of the chorus.
Feelings & Hopes
All the lights went off after Kareha no Kage and soft music (instrumental of Boku no Kakera) started playing in the background. This is the part where the main characters each came out and revealed their deepest feelings of sorrow and their hopes for the future.
The Queen appeared first near the back of the stage and talked about losing her one and only son. She had always wanted her son to grow up to become the King of the Sea. Then, Hideaki appeared on the left side of the stage and said that ambitions cause people to draw out their swords… but this forces others to draw out THEIR swords in order to defend themselves. “Is there no end to these battles?”
Then Yuma appeared and said that he can’t remember much about his mother – only that she had a very beautiful, soft voice. Here, the Queen started humming a pretty lullaby in the background… Then Nikki-san appeared from the right side and wished for Hideaki and Yuma to work together to restore and protect the harmony in the seas.
Then there was a flashback to the old days, where chibi Hideaki told chibi Yuma (both played by Jrs) that he didn’t want to be king and that he wanted Yuma to be the future king instead. Hideaki’s only wish was to build the fastest boat and explore all the other seas beyond the horizon… Then, it was back to the present.
The spotlight was back on Hideaki as he said “Yuma, you must not stain your hands with blood… Someone who has caused bloodshed will not become a good king. Let me be the only one to be covered in blood.” Then Hideaki touched the necklace around his neck and said “This necklace that our mother gave us… it will surely protect us.”
But suddenly, a figure of a woman appeared and the Queen drew out a sword and beheaded her… reminding Hideaki and Yuma of how their mother was killed. Hideaki and Yuma both yelled out “Hahaue!” (Mother!) and the intro to ONE NIGHT began playing in the background.
☆ ONE NIGHT
This was sung by Hideaki, Nikki, and Yuma. Their harmonies sounded very nice together. Just like last year, the background had many chibis in their ‘cubes’ dancing with luminous shadows. Hideaki sang the last chorus alone. And at the end, Hideaki yelled “This will be our final battle!!” before running off the stage.
1 – 5 : The Queen’s Palace of Doom A
Yuma arrived at the Queen’s palace and he was unaware that he was under the surveillance of the evil green team, who were watching him from the right and left panels. Under the Queen’s order, they could not lay a finger on Yuma, so they vowed that if they cannot kill him, then they will kill Hideaki instead.
Yuma entered the Queen’s room and confronted her. But the Queen tried to manipulate his mind… telling Yuma that she had no choice but to fight… that her one and only son was killed by Nikki-san… and that if Yuma really wanted to avenge his mother’s death, then he could kill her and go to his mother’s grave with her blood on his hands.
In confusion, Yuma stuttered “My father… he killed your son?”
Then dramatic music started playing and the set changed as the stage rotated in a counter clockwise direction. Tottsu appeared with Haruka and he reported her observations to the Queen. This is when Yuma and the audience found out that Haruka was actually a spy who was sent into Kinokuni to keep an eye on Hideaki’s clan. Tottsu scolded Haruka for falling in love with Hideaki during her undercover mission.
But just as the Queen had predicted, Hideaki and Nikki-san soon arrived at the scene (their ship crashing in from the right side, and Hideaki was in kirakira white~) and the battle began.
Half way through the battle, Haruka appeared with a short blade knife. Hideaki asked her why she betrayed them but in reply, Haruka said “I’ll protect you with my life!” and began helping Hideaki fight off the evil green team. However, moments later, Tottsu showed up in front of her… Haruka yelled “ANIUE!!” and Tottsu mercilessly slashed her down with his sword. This when the audience found out that Haruka was actually Tottsu’s younger sister! (Akirashock!)
Hideaki quickly knelt down beside Haruka and held her up with his arm. Haruka uttered the words “To be able to die in Hideaki-sama’s arms…” before she died.
Then Yuma appeared on stage. Seeing Haruka’s body next to Hideaki and his bloody sword, he thought that Hideaki was the one who killed her. But before Hideaki could explain himself, the evil green team returned for another round of swordfighting action.
During the battle, Hideaki climbed up the left panels and did his high jump… sighhh~ no matter how many times I watch it, I always get so nervous and I always hold my breath when he jumps. I don’t remember if you can hear it in the DVD, but when you’re watching it live, you can hear Hideaki panting after he falls on the safety mat… that part makes me realize how physically demanding a show like Kakumei really is…
Anyway, when Hideaki got up, he continued to battle off the evil green team. He fought and fought until there was a sudden “Thoooom!” sound and the stage went dark. A second later, the lights came back on and it was only Hideaki, Nikki-san, Yuma, and the Queen on the stage.
1 – 6 : The Queen’s Palace of Doom B
☆ Act 1 Ending
Hideaki charged at the Queen, but Yuma stood between them and yelled at Hideaki. “Aniki! Please stop!! You killed Haruka… you killed the Queen’s son… how many people are you willing to kill to achieve this revolution (kakumei) of yours?! Please, let’s stop this… If you refuse to stop, then you’ll have to kill me too.” And Yuma began fighting with Hideaki…
Touched by Yuma’s words, the Queen said “Yuma…That’s my boy…” This is where Hideaki and the audience found out that Yuma was the Queen’s long lost child. Apparently (according to other fan reports), Nikki-san took Yuma with him when the clan was exiled into the forests because he didn’t want the kid to grow up under the Queen’s evil influences. So Hideaki and Yuma grew up thinking that they were real brothers.
In disbelief, Hideaki said “What… FATHER!!” and Nikki-san shamefully nodded and said “Yuma’s mother… is the Queen.” Yuma said “Aniki… no… Hideaki has been my enemy all this while?” before he reached for the necklace around his neck, ripped it off and threw it across the stage. Hideaki, who was standing across from Yuma, watched as the necklace flew past him (on his left). Then, Yuma charged at Hideaki again with his sword.
But Hideaki (being much stronger than Yuma) dodged his swings like they were nothing. He singlehandedly swung his sword against Yuma’s sword and Yuma fell down. But when he turned to face Yuma, Yuma accidentally stabbed him on the side.
Hideaki fell to the ground and Nikki-san ran to his side. Yuma stood there staring at Hideaki in disbelief. At that moment, the Pandora’s Box appeared on the platform behind them and the voices in the background (which were the voices in Yuma’s head) urged Yuma to open the box – to forget all that happened and start anew. Yuma walked towards the box as Hideaki and the Queen yelled for him to stop.
When Yuma opened the box, Hideaki pushed him aside to take his place….
Hideaki turned into Hidejiji and started rolling around the stage like he does every year XD
And that’s the end of Act 1! ^^