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Rising idol group UPUPGIRLS (KARI) currently holds their first nationwide live tour, “UPUPGIRLS 2nd Chapter (KARI) Advancing toward Nakano.”

To hold solo live at overcrowded Nakano Sun Plaza is one of top idols’ goals. The girls have been setting the goal too.

On March 31, which was the perfect weather to go out, UPUPGIRLS held the release event for their new single “(KARI) wa kaesuze☆be your soul / Party! Party! / Jumper!” at the Gundam square in Odaiba Divercity, Tokyo. It became the first event for UPUPGIRLS to performe three new songs at once.

To meet with UPUPGIRLS (KARI) and each “Oshi” (Favorite), more than 500 fans gathered at a priority area. The downstage were filled with core fans who wore each members’ T shirts, having an upupgirls’ official chemical light stick.

Under the real-size RX-78-2 Gundam, the unveiling event started with a heart pounding drum intro.

The members of UPUP naturally performed the first song “UPPER CUT”. An atomosphere srrounded the stage was slightly changed. “UPPER CUT” charged up not only the fans, but also people around the square.

After the first song performed, UPUPGIRLS (KARI) cheerfully introduced themselves again. Topic was shifted to the one of the new songs, “(KARI) wa Kaesuze☆be your soul.” “It’s a snapping popping song like playing marble, so please enjoy with us!”

Maana Arai was glad that their close artist Yasuko Omori wrote the song for them. The members chatted like a girls night out, and pointed out the song is something new. Images they had for the group was “powerful”, or “fun” but, it seemed Omori-san provided them a new armor.

About Maana Arai, I found Maana evolved a lot. While I was looking at her rich performance, I was searching my oldest memory of her in my head. In H!P Egg concert (current H!P Trainee recital), there was an elementary school girl wearing geeky glasses, dancing in silence. The impact remainded inside of me, became one of the reason why she is my oshi in the group. Now she emits a strong magical atomosphere and friendly smile. Her unieque vocabrary (she has the smartest charactor in UUG) and her short hair have caught my eyes for a long while.

Konatsu Furukawa encouraged people with a super loud voice, “Please support us, and the new songs!” with sincerity. No doubt, she is the ultra high spec engine of the upup-girls. You have to turn on her to start UPUPGIRLS (KARI).

By the way, the members of UPUP are the first generation of H!P Kenshusei, formed in 2004, except Ayanon, who joined in 2009. Unlike S/mileage, Erina Mano, or Juice=Juice now, UPUPGIRLS couldn’t make their debut in Hello! Project. Although there’s nowhere to play life in easy-mode, UPUPGIRLS started its history without an organizational support of H!P, and H!P fans. Since then, they have had a secret ambition to hold solo live at Nakano Sun Plaza, the holy place of H!P.

Going back to the event, Akari Saho sang the best part of “(KARI) wa kaesuze☆be your soul”. The solo part gave the fans in the restricted area a scream of delight. Yes, “Fuuuuuu!” is always fun to say.

The song ended up with the formation Azusa Sekine was in the center. It was impressive that she was having a shy smile when all the rest member surrounded and teased her. It is hard to believe that they are the same girls with the people who danced behind Erina Mano as her Backdancers just a couple years ago.

Before they showed off “Jumper!”, Sato Ayano freshly said with a determinative tone, “I feel the new single will be our signature songs. I want fans and future fans to take this is who we are.” She fueled the audience at loud, “So, please everybody jump!!” “Jumper!” knocked out fans, moreover, it was the moment they stole the area. The flash of smiles UPUPGIRLS showed in the song would gain new fans.

After they had a little chat, Konatsu addressed the audience at loud, saying “This is the last song, Party! Party! Let’s enjoy the party with us! ” When they took their positions, Negicco’s song “Attouteki na style” was played from somewhere. UPUPGIRLS and fans couldn’t stop screaming, and some were stunned, by the music and appearance of Ikuo Minewaki, the president of TOWER RECORDS JAPAN.

Maana Arai threw herself into the chaos saying “You spinned Negicco-san’s song, are your oshi Negicco-san?” Ikuo Minewaki gently dinied and said, “you would keep performing if I come with one of your songs.”

It was a surprise announcement about the concert at Nakano Sun Plaza, to be held on June 1. Ikuo Minewaki gave a happy report that all 2,222 seats were sold out in a day.


Mnami Sengoku and Saki Mori were just frozen to the spot, and sat in astonishment.
Akari Saho cried for joy more than anyone. Ayano Sato dashed across the stage and
ran to the grand staircase way far from where she was.

Konatsu said in tears, “We made it because we have you. We’ll give it back to you on June 1, in Nakano.” In addition, including a sense of joy, and as a rehearsal for Nakano, she made her special move, somersault turn (Denguri-gaeshi) on the stage. Ikuo Minewaki “This is the only one hall the tickets were sold out though.” UPUPGIRLS asked fans for the continuing support.

Without mentioning, the last song of the day, “Party! Party!” became the memorial song to cerebrate the sold-out of their Nakano performance.

For your information, Saki Mori kindly accepted an interview after the live. She is learning French now because she likes to go around the country one day. As a group, they are eager to go to see fans in Europe, Asia, America, and anywhere around the world as long as there are fans!

UPUPGIRLS (KARI) said that people who become thier fan before Nakano, will be recognized by them as their old / senior fans.
It shows the live at Nakano Sun Plaza is only the beginning for UPUPGIRLS.
I hope as much people as possible will like UPUPGIRLS (KARI).

reported by Yuji Hara

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