OTAQUEST LIVE is being held in Los Angeles on July 3rd with a concept of “sharing Japanese pop music to the world”. This year will be the second time we’ve held our event in the US, and one of the most popular Japanese artists in the world, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, is joining the lineup! She has spread the word and concept of “KAWAII” internationally, making it a universally used word, and has successfully done world tours four times. What kind of performance is she going to show us at OTAQUEST LIVE? We interviewed her just before she leaves for the US to find out!
OTAQUEST: In your 2018 world tour, for the first time, you tried to bring the same show you performed in Japan to the rest of the world. How was the reaction of overseas audiences?
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: I received good reactions from them. The stage was made with a concept of a “Japanese haunted house” and I made a video of Japanese ghosts complaining “It’s not fair that Kyary always features Western ghosts!” When the video was played, everyone had a good laugh. Their reaction was livelier than the Japanese. Also, a character designed after the Japanese ghost, the Nine-tailed Fox, came on stage in the middle of a song, and everyone was enjoying taking pictures of it. It seems rare everywhere overseas that a character comes on stage during a show. I’m glad that everyone enjoyed it.
OTAQUEST: So, your shows are always popular no matter if you make the concept without thinking about overseas. Weren’t you aiming “Going global!” for your music career?
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: No, I wasn’t really thinking about that. I don’t sing in English, and I don’t really have a desire of “I want to get #1 on Billboard!” If I think like that, I feel like I’m going to lose my way, and I may not be able to enjoy music… I want to enjoy my performance too. As long as the audience gets my feeling and they enjoy the show I think that’s the most important thing.
OTAQUEST: OTAQUEST LIVE is a show that a lot of anime and manga fans may come to see. What do you want them to focus on?
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: I just want them to simply enjoy my performance. When I performed at “JAPAN EXPO” in France, contents related to anime and games were more popular. For me as a musician, I had a bitter feeling when I saw that. I want people to think that Japanese music is more interesting, so I hope people will enjoy my performance this time and hope they feel “Japanese music is interesting!”
OTAQUEST: People pay a lot of attention to and love your outfits when you are on stage. What kind of outfit can we expect to see this time?
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: I prepared a special outfit just for this show. It’s feminine like a showgirl but also flashy. If you are coming to the show, please look forward to it!
OTAQUEST: A common way to enjoy Japanese music is for the crowd “to do the same dance moves together”. Do you have any dance choreography that you want your audience to dance together at the show?
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: Just do the same moves as me. I will call out the moves, and they are very easy to learn, so let’s dance together at the show!
OTAQUEST: The cute dance for your new song “Kimiga Iine Kuretara” is getting popular, so we’re looking forward to seeing it during the show. The song is themed after social media, but how did you come up with that theme?
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: I always decide the visual image and music video theme along with a song. For this time, I listened to the song and thought “Pink might go well with the song, so let’s choose pink for the key image.” Also, something like “It might be interesting if I have a beard.” It really depends on my inspiration.
OTAQUEST: Overseas fans are also excited for new music since it’s been a year since your new album was released. What do you have planned in the future for your music career?
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: Japan has entered a new era, “Reiwa”, and we don’t experience this kind of “resetting occasion” many times in our lives. I don’t want to lose my way, but I want to try new things and do other than what I have built up.
You can catch Kyary Pamyu Pamyu at The Novo in Los Angeles on July 3rd as a part of OTAQUEST LIVE alongside m-flo, CAPSULE, HIROOMI TOSAKA, and CrazyBoy. Tickets are on sale now!