Arashi‘s new album “Boku no Miteiru Fuukei” hung onto its #1 spot for a second week. After selling 731,000 copies in its first week, it added another 125,000 copies this past week, moving it closer to the inevitable million mark. This is actually the first time that an original album by Arashi has topped the charts in back-to-back weeks.SCANDAL’s new album took the #3 spot on the sales rankings, while Cocco entered at #5. Fresh releases from Crazy Ken Band and HY occupied the last two spots on the top ten.
On the singles chart, Masaharu Fukuyama led the way with the double A-side “Hotaru / Shonen,” selling 158,000 copies. This is his 12th #1 single, and according to Oricon, this ties him with Hikaru Utada for the record of most #1 singles by a singer-songwriter.
Perfume‘s “VOICE” ranked at #2 for the week, followed by T.M.Revolution. Korean girl group KARA made it to #5, marking the first time that a foreign female group has entered the top ten with a debut single (in Japan) since The Nolans did it in 1980.
In DVD sales, the new concert DVD from the KinKi Kids sold 101,000 copies to top the overall rankings. With a current total of 8 number-one DVDs, they are now also tied with Utada for the record.
Another impressive DVD release came from Korean artists Girls’ Generation (also known as So Nyeo Shi Dae, or SNSD). Their first Japanese release sold 23,000 copies, reaching #4 on the overall rankings. They are the first Korean girl group to enter the Top 5, and the first female Korean artist since BoA did it more than 7 years ago.
Source: Oricon + tokyograph.com
Korean pop sensation Girls’ Generation will hold their first-ever showcase in Japan next week, according to their agency SM Entertainment on Thursday.
SM announced in a press release that the girls will be performing in front of their local fans at the Ariake Colosseum in Tokyo, Japan on August 25.
The showcase was originally scheduled to take place on one date but has been extended by two more performances, expecting to gather a total 20,000 fans to their first official event in the country.
Attendees for the showcase will be purchasers of the group’s DVD titled “‘少女時代到 ～日記念盤～New Beginning of Girls’ Generation,” which was released in the country on August 11, to celebrate their debut into the Japanese music industry.
The DVD placed at No. 3 on the prestigious Oricon’s weekly DVD chart and fourth place on the overall chart, making them the first Korean girl group to have their first DVD to rank in the top 5 slots.
Meanwhile, the girls will release “Genie” as their first Japanese single, which will be produced in both Japanese and Korean, on September 8 while the teaser video will be unveiled on the official Universal Music Japan YouTube channel tomorrow.
Girls’ Generation, who began their music career in 2007, have numerous No. 1 hit songs under their belts including, “Girls’ Generation,” “Gee,” “Genie” and “Run Devil Run.”
Last year, they performed in several countries in Asia such as China, Shanghai and Thailand for their “1st ASIA TOUR CONCERT – Into the New World.”
The girls are also preparing for the “SMTOWN LIVE ’10 WORLD TOUR” which will kick off in Seoul on August 21 with other SM artists.
The artists of major talenthouse SM Entertainment will go on a world tour starting mid-August, SM announced on Friday.
SM explained through a press release that their singers, including Kangta, BoA, U-know Yunho, Max Changmin, Super Junior, Girls’ Generation, SHINee, f(x), TRAX, will take off on the “SMTOWN LIVE ’10 WORLD TOUR” which kicks off at the Olympic Park in Seoul on August 21.
The tour will then take place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on September 4 and the Hongkou Gymnasium in Shanghai on September 11. The dates for Tokyo and other cities in Asia have yet to be announced.
SM, founded by former singer Lee Soo-man in 1995, is in charge of discovering and training numerous top K-pop artists including Fly To The Sky, H.O.T, TVXQ and Girls’ Generation.
SM also manages the careers many songwriters, music producers, comedians and actors including Ara, Choi Jung-yoon and Lee Yeon-hee.
Tickets for the Seoul performance will be available starting July 15 on online shopping website Gmarket (http://www.gmarket.co.kr) and sold to fan club members two days in advance.
The first Korean production of the musical “Miss Saigon” was a hit when it premiered in 2006 with more than 85 percent of seats sold. Confident that the show could repeat its successful run, another Korean production of the musical was staged here earlier this year. This time, however, ticket sales were at only 55 percent.
“The Phantom of the Opera” was one of the best-selling musicals here until May, but sales are less than stellar these days.
Korean productions of hit musicals have drawn audiences and re-shaped the landscape of the theater scene in recent years. But the industry that has proven so lucrative for the industry as a whole is experiencing a shift toward a new phenomena that critics say could change things – for better or for worse. While theater critics say recent productions are higher in quality than in the past, sluggish ticket sales in recent months have led the industry to refer to its current situation as musical theater’s “ice age.”
In the midst of the public’s indifference, the only performances that have been able to attract audiences are the ones that have members of Korea’s idol groups as part of their casts.
The musical “Mozart,” which stars Xiah Jun-su, a member of the disbanded group TVXQ, recorded average ticket sales of 99 percent when he was in the role. That figure dropped to just 74 percent when another actor was in the leading role. Similarly, the Korean production of “Legally Blonde” had its own idol star in Girls’ Generation member Jessica. Ticket sales surged to 90 percent when Jessica, who rotated the role with two other actresses, was on the boards, but plummeted to just 70 percent when she was not.
The most recent example of this phenomenon is the production of “Midnight Sun,” which also featured a member of Girls’ Generation, Taeyeon. Sales soared to a whopping 98 percent when she was on stage but fell to 78 percent when someone else was in the role.
“The Korean public tends to be stingy when it comes to paying their own money for cultural events,” pop culture critic Sung Gi-wan said. “The only ones who are willing to do that are fans who want to watch their favorite stars.”
The current trend is not the result of bad acting or a dearth of good musicals, critics say. Instead, it appears to be the simple fact that casting popular singers attracts fans and publicity. “A Chorus Line,” which opened last weekend, has Jung-ah, a member of girl group After School, and Soo-hyun, a member of U-Kiss, in the cast. The producers revealed that they did not want to cast celebrities because of their busy schedules but investors refused to support the production if the stars were not part of it.
“The public is sick of the surge of large-scale musicals from overseas that have arrived since 2001,” theater critic Cho Yong-sin said. “Musicals in the U.S. were also reliant on Hollywood stars until well-crafted musicals were made. If we can create pieces that are moving as well as original, we may be able to remove the idols from the stage.”
By Choi Min-woo [firstname.lastname@example.org]
SeoHyun, SNSD’s maknae has released her new solo single that is part of the soundtrack for the new MBC drama, ‘Kim SooRo.’ SeoHyun proves she has the vocals to carry a song all on her own, and the new track sounds like a hit!
Check out the single:
Doesn’t SeoHyun sound amazing? It’d be nice to see other members of SNSD showcase their individual vocals.
Girls’ Generation first-ever pictorial booklet is set to go on sale starting June 7, according to their agency SM Entertainment on Thursday.
SM revealed through a press release that book titled “少女 (in Tokyo),” to be available both online and offline, has already received approximately 35,000 preorders.
The photographs in the book were shot in Tokyo late last year, featuring the girls looking natural while undertaking day-to-day occurrences such as traveling, playing sports and partying.
The pictorial book also includes behind-the-scenes images of the girl group and a DVD including the making of the book.
Girls’ Generation, composed of members Tiffany, Taeyeon, Yoona, Jessica, Sunny, Sooyoung, Seohyun and Hyoyeon, have been one of the most popular female idols in the country since their debut in 2007.
They recently topped several online music charts in Asia last week with their second repackaged album “Run Devil Run.”
Super Junior member Heechul has praised Yoona of Girls’ Generation, calling her “the prettiest female celebrity I have seen” on his official Twitter site (http://twitter.com/Heedictator/).
The singer had posted the compliment along with a candid picture that he had taken alongside Yoona on his personal Twitter page yesterday.
“Yoona has a great balance of good personality and good looks — her face looks much prettier without make-up and powder,” the pop idol wrote.
He also hinted at his close friendship with her, saying that “we affectionately tease each other whenever we meet — I call her grandma and she calls me old man. But she is the prettiest female celebrity that I have seen.”
In the photo, the young pop stars looked goofy and friendly, striking an identical pose — their index finger touching their lips.
Hundreds of fans have responded to the pic, making various comments such as “I’m so jealous,” “you broke my heart” and “both look cute.”
Heechul is one of the thirteen members of boy band Super Junior, who debuted in December 2005 with their first studio album titled “SuperJunior05 (TWINS)”.
They became a K-pop phenomenon across Asia, thanks to the success of their subsequent albums “Don’t Don” (2007) and “Sorry, Sorry” (2009), and held two sold-out concert tours in 2008 and 2009 titled “The 1st Asia Tour – Super Show” and “Super Show 2”.
As one of the more versatile members in the group, Heechul has branched out to acting in dramas and appearing on numerous variety shows over the past several years. He recently joined the cast of celebrity variety show “Family Outing Season 2.”
Super Junior is currently promoting their fourth full-length album “BONAMANA” as a ten-man band as members Kang-in, Kibum and Hangeng decided to take a break from group activities.
oh okay, so she is pretty. I must admit that she is when she doesn’t have make up on and I’m sure all of you would agree with me on that one. ^^
Korean pop princesses Girls’ Generation is set to release their first-ever pictorial booklet at the end of this month, according to their agency SM Entertainment.
A press release by SM revealed that a limited-edition photo book titled “少女-In Tokyo,” featuring 354 pages of photographs of the girls shot in Japan and a DVD with English subtitles of the nine-member girl group, will go on sale on May 31.
The girls successfully finished promoting their second repackaged album “Run Devil Run” in Korea last month and have been focusing on their overseas and individual activities.
They kicked off their Asia tour “1st ASIA TOUR CONCERT–Into the new world” on April 17 in Shanghai performing their hit singles “Gee,” “Tell Me Your Wish,” “Kissing You” and “Oh!”
The tour will continue onto to other countries in Asia including Thailand on May 29.
Girls’ Generation composed of members Tiffany, Taeyeon, Yoona, Jessica, Sunny, Sooyoung, Seohyun and Hyoyeon are known as one of the most popular female idols in the country since their debut in 2007.
They are managed by one of the largest agencies in Korea, SM Entertainment who also manages the careers of girl group f(x), SHINee and Super Junior.
Korean pop princesses Girls’ Generation will kick off their Asia tour this Saturday starting in China, according to their agency SM Entertainment on Tuesday.
SM explained that the nine-member group will hold a concert in Shanghai followed by shows in other countries throughout Asia including Thailand on May 29.
The girls have recently seen their eighth back-to-back hit with “Run Devil Run,” the title track from their repackaged second album of the same name released in late March.
The song has triumphed on numerous online and offline music charts as well as taking its second consecutive win on televised music shows over the weekend.
Girls’ Generation has been one of the most popular female idol groups in the country since making their debut in 2007.
They gave a successful encore performance of their “1st ASIA TOUR CONCERT – Into the New World” in late February.
Female idols Girls’ Generation celebrated another win on televised music program SBS’ “Inkigayo” over the weekend.
The girls were awarded the Mutizen Award for their latest song “Run Devil Run,” the title track from their repackaged second album of the same name.
Other contenders on the show this week were Kara, 2AM, T-ara, Beast and Epik High.
“Inkigayo” resumed its broadcast for the first time in three weeks. Korea’s major public networks had cancelled or delayed the showing of their entertainment shows following the sinking of naval ship Cheonan in late March.
KBS’ music show “Music Bank” did not air this weekend, instead stating it will air its program starting April 16.
Girls’ Generation made their debut in 2007 and has since released numerous singles including “Into the New World,” “Kissing You,” “Gee,” “Tell Me Your Wish” and “Oh!”
They have been enjoying a successful comeback to the music scene with “Run” which has topped online and offline music charts since its release last month.