Kozue Aikawa has won charismatic popularity in the new genre “Odottemita (I tried dancing to it)”born in recent years. She announced her graduation from DANCEROID during their solo live on June 3. 3 months had passed fast and it was finally the day of “DANCEROID solo live DR Revolution: Kozue Aikawa’s graduation live”.
Crowded venue was filled with anticipations before the live started. The lights were turned out and the audience started to count down. The LED lighting effects were unique to this unique venue nicofarre. The live was being broadcast live on Nico Nico Live, where more than 40,000 users joined with their messages.
They appeared in silver color costumes wearing huge ribbons on their heads. Those futuristic costumes went very well with the venue filled with LED and psyllium lights. The tension of the venue was heated up by the first song “MEGU MEGU☆FIRE ENDLESS NIGHT”. The yells of “Fire!!” vibrated the venue. The members danced with hand fans to “China Cyber@Uoaini”. 3 members Kozue, Yuzuki and Maam performed “Shakariki Only One!” They performed cute love songs such as “First Kiss!” and “LOL -lots of laugh-” to which they danced wearing glasses as usual. “Emo Love” reminded me of the collaboration feature on Kawaii girl Japan 2 years ago where leader Ikura and Lolita model Misako Aoki shot “Odottemita (I tried dancing to it)” together.
Then the video messages from dancers they had collaborated in “Odottemita (I tried dancing to it)” were shown on the monitor. There were many messages from dancers such as Miume who had performed in “DANCEROID Fes” or former member Minka・Lee. Kozue wiped her tears as she stared at the monitor It was the middle phase of the live and time for the solo numbers. Yuzuki and Maam who had changed into the original uniforms danced to “Gravity=Reality” in light steps. They had joined the group as 2nd term members. At first they didn’t dance or talk very well but they had grown up to be powerful and mature in these 2 years. Ikura performed her solo number “Prism Heart” followed by Kozue’s “Bye-Bye”. Her face looked sad unlike the gentle smile she showed while performing “First Kiss!” Kozue changed her dance moves as well as facial expressions depending on the songs to express her feelings with her whole body. The live had come to the second half. They performed rhythmic songs such as “Baby Maniacs” to which they danced in sexy moves which looked like a kissing scene. In “Poker Face”, they started to dance respectively in small steps to the bass sound rhythm. They caught the eyes of the audience when they began to move in big gestures and make formation moves. “Are you having fun? We’re now in the second half of the show!” said Ikura to which fans replied “We’ve just arrived here!” altogether. The members said “You all are lying!” in turn. Then they clapped hands altogether in the way the host of the famous noon TV show does.
In the lighting effects like falling stars, Ikura and Kozue performed “TWINKLE×TWINKLE”. The members of DANCEROID often use headset microphone for their performances but this time they danced with hand ones. “This is the last song. Here we go!” Kozue introduced the last song “LUKALUKA★Night Fever” which she choreographed herself. The song has been played more than 6,000,000 times on YouTube and 3,500,000 times on Nico Nico Douga.
During encore, the audience called Kozue’s name and her names were shown on the wall by the LED lights. Everyone held psyllium lights of pink, her member color. I could see and hear the fans’ love for Kozue everywhere.
The graduation ceremony was held after the performance of “Melting Snow Man’s Love Song”. The microphone stand was set at the center of the stage and all the monitors at the venue showed the images of the cherry blossoms. Yuzuki, Maam, Ikura read their letters to Kozue respectively.
Yuzuki said she had been saved by Kozue during the 3rd session of the audition for DANCEROID: “When I was told I had passed the audition and heading for the backstage, I couldn’t stand still suddenly. She came to me first and hugged me strongly. She made me feel relaxed only in that one second. I couldn’t say thank you at the moment, so let me tell you now.” Maam said: “Even when I’m writing this letter, I still can’t believe KozuKozu is going to leave DANCEROID. We will spend much less time together after that. But please call me anytime when you are feeling down, happy or anyway. I’ll always listen to you. From now on, please recover your health and go your own way. Thank you for supporting DANCEROID until now. I wish KozuKozu will shine brighter than ever.” Ikura said: “I’ve shared happy and hard times together with Kozue. She’s more sensitive than anyone, so she must have spent more hard times than me. Throughout the times we’ve worked together as the 1st term members, I’ve always been encouraged by you. Thank you. Now I can believe your graduation will be a big step forward for DANCEROID as well as Kozue. I can finally celebrate your graduation now. Congratulations for your graduation.” Kozue couldn’t stop crying as she listened to their words. “I, Kozue Aikawa graduate from DANCEROID today on September 1, 2012. I’m not good at expressing my feelings with words, so there must have been times I couldn’t say sorry or thank you very well. I really appreciate you for having understood me and stayed together with me. I could enjoy any little thing when 4 of us were together. I was just a high school girl who liked to upload my movies on the video sharing sites. Without supports from fans, I couldn’t have performed in fantastic venues, with fantastic members and in fantastic events like this. When I was feeling down, I was saved by the messages from fans. You are my treasure. I’ll continue to work hard so that I can make you smile. Please continue to support Kozue Aikawa and DANCEROID. On September 1, 2012 by Kozue Aikawa.”
Fans called Kozue’s names in tears. Kozue answered their calls: “Please let me dance to this song one more time! Please continue, “LUKALUKA★Night!” to which fans answered “Fever!”
The last song was the one which made ordinary high school girl Kozue Aikawa famous in one day. The members, fans at the venue and probably behind the screens danced hard to the song. “I’ve done everything I can as a member of DANCEROID! Thank you so much!”
I met Kozue for the first time around 2 years ago. She was lifting both sides of her hair up her forehead, which has become her trademark. She looked nervous even when she was smiling. After seeing each other several times, we started talking about things like favorite idols. She changed her hairstyle and grew mature. She still looked nervous when meeting someone for the first time, but she looked alive when talking about her favorite idols. She looked more alive and shiny on stage with her smile. I’m going to miss seeing her on stage. I’m going to wait to see her again on stage with fans.
It has been announced that an audition for the 3rd term members of DANCEROID will be held. Fans must have not expected to hear even the current members had to attend the audition. I’ve asked how the members are feeling for that news. We’d like to believe their following words and wait to see further growths of DANCEROID and Kozue Aikawa.
Ikura: The time has passed really fast! It was the last performance by these 4 members, so we put everything into the set list. Knowing Kozue would graduate from the group after the live, I danced every song thinking “this would be the last time to perform this song by 4 of us” and treasured every moment of the song. I believe it was our best performance as 4. The cheers of the audience were louder than usual, which made me cry from the first song (laughter). Kozue has been indispensable for DANCEROID, so we have to fill as big hole as she meant to our group. But with supports from fans, I believe DANCEROID and Kozue can continue to grow up bigger. I’m going to work harder so that fans would follow us all the way.
Reporter: Which is the most memorable “Odottemita (I tried dancing to it)” song for you?
Ikura: I like every song and every one of them is important, but “Strobo Nights” is most memorable one. The song has been written by my favorite kz and I was really thrilled when I found the movie in which my favorite yumiko was dancing to it! I showed my face for the first time in the movie in which I danced to the song. That is why I feel strongly about the song. I haven’t uploaded my movie of dancing to “Melting Snow Man’s Love Song”, but I have a lot of feelings for the movie by the dancer Marice. Our former choreographer MTP choreographed the song, which is why its dance moves are full of DANCEROID’s moves. I cried with the members when I saw the movie for the first time without knowing the fact.
Kozue: How did you feel when you first heard about the audition for the 3rd term members? How are you feeling now for that?
At first I felt really insecure and didn’t like the idea very much. But I began to believe it would help us grow up and make ties between the members and with fans stronger. Now I’m feeling really positive like “Why can’t we do that?” I’m definitely going to be back on stage as a leader of DANCEROID!
Reporter: What does DANCEROID mean to you?
It’s an unlimited happy circle. Which can be said our motto! Some can be happy by seeing us dance, others make new friends at our lives, and we can be happy to see their happy smiles and messages. I believe DANCEROID is a unit through which everyone can share happiness. Members are as much important for me as my family and friends. I really love them.