The seats were really amazing - on the front row, to the right of the stage... I didn't tell Em-chan in advance, because I wanted to see her reaction (sorry Em-chan!!) when we got closer to the seats. And when we got there - her reaction was priceless! First, she told me she hated me and would kill me, but then she calmed down - and after the show she loved me for winning those tickets. ;)
I won't write this report in chronological order as I did with the other two report, since it was so similar. Instead this will focus almost entirely on thoughts and feeeelings! I promise you, there were A LOT of feelings during this show!
(A short note: This report is written here just as I wrote it directly after the show, so when I say 'today' I don't mean today, but the day of the show last year.)
Me and Em-chan were panicking for quite some time before the show started, because the stage was literally a few feet in front of us. There was just enough space for one person to walk between us and the stage! And I don't know who of us was panicking the most; Em-chan who hadn't been prepared for this at all, or me who knew what we could expect to see from our view...
The intro... When we could see the silhouettes of everyone on the stage even when they weren't pointed out with spotlights, because we were so close. Everythingwith this show was about "we're so close!" Finally getting to see Tsubasa's perfect dancing right in front of us... We got to see both flamenco steps AND hipthrusts right in front of our eyes!! Ah, those hips!
It felt like Yuma was hardly looking at the audience. He waved to a few people sometimes, and smiled at some people a few times, but most of the time he seemed completely focused on the performance and the dancing that he didn't notice much else. He is working so hard to match the level of Tsubasa and Yara! It was extra evident from this close distance. And he was looking so good! He's not yet 20 years old, but he's so tall and skinny and handsome, and he moves so wonderfully and his voice gives me goosebumps every time! It can't be helped - most of my favourite performances this year are his solos: 水の帰る場所, よく遊びよく学べ, ズッコケ男道...
It feels a bit strange since I arrived in Japan being a hardcore Takitsuba fan, and Tsubasa's solos should logically be my favourites... But I can't control my feelings. I love Yuma, and his solos are songs that I already love. And 水の帰る場所 is just sooo beautiful!! I was crying through the whole performance today. I can't describe how beautiful it is! I can live with the fact that he didn't seem to notice me during the show, and that I didn't get a highfive from him - because I've seen him dancing and singing just a few feet in front of me. I've seen the focus and the determination in his eyes, his will to become better and better, his will to prove that he's worthy of being Tsubasa's right hand in PLAYZONE.
Let's see, were there any more special episodes with him from today... He once again hit the poodle head repeatedly during ズッコケ男道, and at the end of まいったネ 今夜 he hanged his hat on the mic stand...
Tsubasa passed really close by us during フラワー, but just a tiny bit too far away.. He was just so close that the two people next to me could reach him, but I couldn't. Tsubasa was just generally perfect today, as usual. Hips, flamenco hands, cool flicks of his head, more hips, more perfection!
Oh, and I just have to mention Yuma again... Sorry, Tsubasa, but during Road to PLAYZONE I looked more at Yuma's hips than yours... That boy, he also knows how to do it, oh yeah! And then during Guys PLAYZONE, Yuma always makes me soooo nervous when he leans out of the cage/thingy like that! And I don't know how he manages to look cute and cool at the same time?!
When Eda-kun was to give the towel to Tsubasa, he first sneezed in it, turned it inside out, and held it out for Tsubasa with a "Hai!" Tsubasa's reply: "Hai janai yo!" On the way out, Eda-kun touched Yara's face with the towel and Yara almost started chasing him... Tsubasa then chose an ichimanen towel from further back in the theatre, a girl from...Osaka, I think?
And then there are all the others, apart from Tsubasa and Yuma... Yara noticed us during the second or the third song, and then he smiled this really big smile at us and waved! I'm not a Yara fan even though I highly admire him for his skill in dancing and choreography, so it was fun to get one of those smiles from him. But he seems to be "type 1" - he looks at a fan once, and then he looks at other fans, trying to notice as many as possible during a show. Then there's "type 2" - those who find a few interesting people in the audience and then keep looking at them as soon as they get the chance. Two of them are Tatsumi (4U) and Noeru (Travis Japan). Both of them noticed us right at the beginning of the show, and then they gave us smiles, waves, peace signs (Noeru) and so on during the whole show! Almost every time they were close to us. Both of them seem to be fascinated by foreigners, haha! I also got a highfive from Tatsumi! He flirted soooo much with Em-chan right before, and then he gave both of us a big highfive, I was so happy! Sadly, I didn't get a highfive from Noeru (he turned back just when he started getting close to us), but I got highfives from many other juniors, like Yamamoto from They!Budou, another member of 4U, and several members of Travis Japan.
Speaking of Travis Japan, two of them were standing right in front of us during the thank you-speech and final bow at the end of the show, and they were teasing each other the whole time! The guy furthest out to the side was kind of punching the guy next to him a few times, and then the other guy finally punched him pretty hard in the stomach... After a short while, the first guy went really close to the second guy, pretending he was glued to him for a few moments, haha! I think one of them was Myuto...
Oh, and speaking of such things - Yuma was chased off the stage after よく遊びよく学べ by someone in 4U, just when the screen came down in front of the stage and Tsubasa appeared. It was hilarious to see! I also remember Yuma's golden shoes very well, from 青春アミーゴ, I really liked them. Guys PLAYZONE was my favourite performance again, it's just so good! And it was so difficult for me because I didn't know which way to look! Yara and two other guys (MAD?) started at the front of the stage, then They!Budou, then Yuma, and finally Tsubasa. And I wanted to look at those who were dancing at the front of the stage, but I also wanted to look at Yuma and Tsubasa all the time... It's difficult to have several favourite members!
And I can't help but realizing that much of this show was about Tatsumi and Noeru... Tatsumi just seems to be interested in foreigners in general (and he's soooo cute!). Tatsumi most definitely flirted his way into my heart during this show, and I hate him for it, LOL! I think that Noeru is also interested in foreigners, for some part, but I also think he focused so much on us because I focused on him a lot. He's the favourite junior of one of my best friends, and she pointed him out for me, so he was one of the few juniors I knew by name. But he looked so happy every time he looked at us, and he's actually rather cute - he's got a very cute smile! - so I kept smiling at him when he was close to us.
Last year I didn't know or care much for the juniors. I knew Tsubasa, Yuma, Yara, Matsuzaki from 4U... As for the rest, they were just guys who filled up the space on stage. But this year, it feels as if I recognize and appreciate the juniors much more. I'm not sure why that's so - maybe a combination of jdramas, all the episodes of Shokura I've watched, the fact that I got really interested in Yasui, Jesse and Hokuto during the beginning of summer, and I don't know, I've just started noticing the juniors more. Which made me appreciate getting highfives from them much more than I would have done last year.
This show was such an experience, I will never forget it! But it was pretty tough during 星屑のスパンコール, because even though they sang "see you again", I knew that I wouldn't. I knew this was the last show I went to this year, and who knows if I'll be able to see PLAYZONE again? I cried so much during this song... But I'm happy that I was so fortunate during this year's PLAYZONE!
01. ROAD TO PLAYZONE
04. ハッとして! Good
06. LOVE YOU ONLY
10. まいったネ 今夜
11. STAR LIGHT
16. HONEY BEAT
24. Guys PLAYZONE