With the ongoing pandemic, it’s no surprise that so many industries have had to adapt to reach audiences and consumers. In Australia, doctors now have online (tele-health) appointments and universities have significantly increased the number of online classes available. But for some industries, the question of being able to provide a similar experience as it would be in-person proves a far more difficult challenge. Particularly for music entertainment, the experience of going to a concert would be so difficult to replicate – the music thundering, singing along with the crowd and joining in on the cheers. On the 26 November 2020, Japanese music labels Lantis and Purple One Star came together to present an online concert – New Generation Live 2020. This online concert showed to me that while online doesn’t replicate the experience of an in-person concert, it creates a whole new unique experience that is just as enjoyable.
New Generation Live ran from 8:30pm – 10:30 pm JST time. Tickets were 2000 yen and attendees were given a password to log into an online portal where they could watch a livestream of the concert. Once the concert was over, the livestream was available to view for just under a week using the same log in. The two hour concert featured seven artists and one artist group, with each playing two songs live before having a short interview about their work and what they have in store for the future. The artist were, in order of performance:
- Ai Furihata
- Marina Horiuchi
- ARCANA PROJECT
- Takao Sakuma
- Kaede Higuchi (a VTuber)
- Koutarou Nishiyama (unfortunately he was unable to attend the concert and pre-recorded videos were played)
- Kanako Takatsuki
Lantis is owned by Bandai Namco Arts Inc, and Purple Star was created in collaboration between Lantis and bluesofa (a company that focuses on anime and game music), so it’s no surprise that many of these performers have some history in anime works. For example, Koutarou Nishiyama is a seiyuu known for works like Cute High Earth Defense Club Love! and only made his solo music debut in early October this year. Kanako Takatsuki and Ai Furihata are Hanamaru Kunikida and Ruby Kurosawa, respectively, in the multimedia franchise Love! Live! Sunshine!!. Just like Nishiyama, these two made their solo debuts in Fall 2020. I think it’s pretty awesome to have an event like this to showcase talented artists at the start of their career. The concert essentially says “keep your eye on these ones, they’ll be big stars one day!”
Now, onto the actual concert!
Watching each performance, I was really impressed by how much energy the performers gave. I suppose, it’s to be expected since they’re all professionals, but I can imagine how difficult it would be to try and give the same energy and passion you’d give to a filled concert hall to a near empty room. But each performer really rose to the challenge, and just watching them sing and dance on stage was such a delight. I suppose one of the great things about watching the singers online is that you get to see all the details of their performance – each hand gesture and facial expression. I know sometimes I’ve been to concerts and been so far away from the performer it’s like watching ants move around on a stage. In terms of ‘quality’ issues – I didn’t have any problems with the sound nor the live stream video quality. I actually watched the concert on my TV, using screen-sharing on my laptop so it was quite an immersive experience!
Of all the performances, I have to say Takao Sakuma and MindaRyn definitely have a new fan! Of course, all the performers were good, but I really enjoyed the music and performance of those two in particular. They brought such an electric energy to the stage and were so eye-catching.
Not exactly a negative or a complaint but I did want to bring up two points that I felt could be improved a bit. One of the performers, Kaede Higuchi, is a v-tuber. There was no issue with her performance, and I really enjoyed her songs but I felt a little unsure of her presentation. A massive screen was essentially brought onto stage and then the ‘avatar’ was singing and dancing against a black background. It just felt a little plain. I wish they had included some interesting background effects or graphics just to give the performance that extra ‘wow’ factor. Additionally, while it definitely wasn’t very long, between each song performers gave a short (1-2 minute greeting/ introduction) and the interview after the performance was about 5-7 minutes long each. I do feel that those ~10 minutes would be better spent performing one more song and having a shorter interview/ introduction.
Overall, I had a lot of fun attending the New Generation Live 2020 concert. As I mentioned above, while it’s not the same as attending a concert in person, an online concert is a whole new accessible way to see your favourite performers from anywhere in the world. Each performer really gave it their all performing to a crowd they couldn’t see and I absolutely cannot fault them in how professional and amazing they were. I’ve definitely come away from the concert with a few new favourite artists, but I’ll keep my eye on the rest as I’m sure they’ll all have bright careers ahead of them.
Thank you to qdopp Inc. for providing me with the opportunity to attend New Generation Live 2020
Images provided by qdopp Inc.