“Sparkling Idol Dance Party!”
- Kira Kira Pop
- Saturday March 24th, 2018
- Bikkuri Sushi, Orlando
Intro: Convention meets concert
Kira Kira Pop is a different experience from a regular concert. With the specific idea of bringing the most appealing parts of anime conventions at a more affordable rate, co-founder Jason Rosa along with his dedicated team created Kira Kira Pop. Outside of Japan, idols (amateur performers with a focus on hard work and improvement and a closeness with their fans) don't get nearly as much attention as professional musicians. Because of the closeness of the community and general positivity idols and idol fans have, this event was created as a way to increase awareness and allow idols and DJs inspired by idol, J-pop, and anime music to gain a better foothold in the US as well as to entertain the people who love them.
Kira Kira Pop is a live celebration of all things J-Pop, Anisong, & Japanese Idol with plenty of other inspired styles mixed in! Come dance in a safe environment where all are welcome!
Kira Kira Pop is currently held several times a year at Bikkuri Sushi in Orlando, Florida. It has a capacity of about 150 people and with a groovy light set up and bar it's quite the party setting. The audience is mostly young adults as the age restriction is 18+. Most are old enough to drink, yet young enough to dance the night away!
Tickets are about $12 and that gives you access to performances for 6 hours, an area to sit and chill, and a chance to look at the artwork for sale from the featured artist.
Having not been to such an event in America before, Honey-chan and Bee-kun went on an adventure to the Sunshine State to see what the hype was all about. The performer list this time consisted of idol groups Citrus and Peachy Parade and DJs Ctrl+R, Stepic, and Hoshikuzu Kid. Upon entering the venue, Honey-chan found herself taken with artist Laeluu's setup featuring KKP posters, stickers, and buttons as well as her original designs for clothing, stickers, and jewelry. Bee-kun found his attention drawn to all of the cosplayers and wotas (fans of idols) dressed for the occasion.
Performance: High-energy anime tunes and idol songs
If one had to sum up KKP in one word, it would be HYPE. Overhead lights are low while the color-changing wall lights react with the music playing. Idol acts choose energetic songs both nostalgic and new to really play to their audience. Knowing the crowd, the DJs used a mix of anime, J-pop, video game, and idol music to create an upbeat atmosphere much like that of convention raves. The audience is almost exclusively idol fans passionate about their favorite groups be they anime or real people and everyone is in the mood for a good time.
The acts booked for Kira Kira Pop are those with obvious idol influences, and performers know this is the place for high energy songs and dance music. Both idol groups covered songs from iDOLM@STER, Dempagumi Inc, and iRis while Citrus had a more edgy, mature setlist and Peachy Parade used a more poppy, cute setlist. Ctrl+r mixed cute, recognizable J-pop songs and resident KKP DJ Hoshikuzu Kid combined idol tracts with underground edgy dance music for a unique combination. Stepic had an amazing set to finish the night indicative of his vast experience both in Korea and Japan.
Citrus member Cherry acted as the MC for the various performers throughout the night, despite having to perform herself. She gave energetic, descriptive accounts of the acts to come and along with Peachy Parade's Sylvia helped stall as the surprise guest of the night, Gojii, took to the stage. Hoshikuzu Kid was clearly a veteran of the show, getting everyone hyped as they came in, despite having to start late. A pretty easy-going guy, he just does what he needs to do while on stage or behind the scenes. Citrus started off their set with their classic opening "Send us your sunshine so we can grow! We are Citrus!" and the 4 members who could make it did a combination of full group songs as well as solos and duos. Citrus seems to exude confidence, especially while they're performing, and command attention. They included some pretty impressive physical feats from jumping over other members and cartwheeling! Ctrl+r was a genuinely friendly guy who kept the mood going by encouraging people to dance.
Peachy Parade's 6 present members did almost entirely 6 person routines with a lot of running around the performance area and engaging with the crowd, talking about their struggles and successes as well as their inspirations.
Stepic took to the stage with a great setlist that kept the energy going despite it being around 1 in the morning and he even included a little Splatoon music as he's a huge fan of the game. Throughout the show he kept throwing out various anime prizes to fans who could show their passion and chatting up the audience.
Finally, the surprise DJ Gojii came on, creating a slightly more chill vibe while still being upbeat enough to keep the crowd engaged. It might have been the alcohol, but people seemed to enjoy the occasional vulgar lyrics in cute voices during the set.
Various audience members got extremely excited when songs they recognized were played which resulted in everything from screaming, jumping up and down, and wotagei (cheering and gestures fans of idols do that are specific to certain songs)
Outro: Leave the night with new music and new friends
One thing that makes Kira Kira Pop so special is how interconnected everyone is. Hoshikuzu Kid, Laeluu, Citrus member Cherry, and Jason all work together to provide the things they want to see more of. These people are real go-getters and each of their unique talents makes for a wonderful night for many people. Guests get along well knowing and appreciating what it takes to be a performer and often hang out before and after the show. Once people are done with their sets, often audience members and guests will seek each other out knowing they share similar interests and passions. Those of age can grab a drink and chat on the sofas in the corner of the room. With a delicious sushi restaurant right next door like-minded individuals can discuss their favorite songs over dinner. People who need a short break from the heat and noise inside can step outside to the back entrance and sit at the tables below the venue before going back in for more. If you're a fan of Japanese music and cuisine you'll definitely appreciate a night with Japanese music, drinks, and food at a reasonable cost. Kira Kira Pop's goal is to help connect and grow this friendly community and create more opportunities for idols both in America and overseas as well as those creative music makers inspired by anime, J-pop, and idol music to share their talent and passions with others.