Hinatazaka46 Christmas 2021 Festival – HinaKuri2021 with a little Surprise
#日向坂46 #ひなくり2021 – For the past four years, Christmas time meant Hinatazaka Christmas or HinaKuri for short. Born in 2018 as Hiragana Christmas, when Hinatazaka46 was still the Hiragana Keyaki subgroup of the Japanese idol group Keyakizaka46, this Christmas concert has entered the group’s schedule as an important regular date. In 2020, a long-held wish of the members and fans was to be realized with the Christmas concert “HinaKuri 2020 at Tokyo Dome”. However, with the outbreak of the Corona Pandemic, everything came otherwise, and the concert took place as an online live stream without an audience.
With this year’s HinaKuri 2021, the concert was finally supposed to take place at Tokyo Dome. But with the absence of their member Kosaka Nao and existing restrictions due to the Corona Pandemic, the group did not want to accept this, because all members and as many fans as possible should take part in the concert. And so the “HinaKuri 2021 at Tokyo Dome” was also cancelled. But no one wanted to miss this special concert at the end of the year, and so the concert was rescheduled without further ado to 24 and 25 December 2021 at Makuhari Messe.
A little later, the Japanese streaming TV station HikariTV, where the Hinatazaka46 variety show Hinachoi is broadcast, approached the group with the idea of a new edition of the Big Unit Festival from the 2nd Hinatansai Festival. And so the “Hinatazaka46 Fuyu no Dai Unit Matsuri: X’mas Special” was born. The festival was held on 22 December 2021 on the HinaKuri 2021 stage in Makuhari Messe.
Hinatazaka46 Fuyu no Dai Unit Matsuri: X’mas Special
The idea of the Unit Matsuri is that the Hinatazaka46 members split up into groups and then sing a song live in front of an audience, which they have never sung together before. In between, small variety show elements are interwoven again and again.
While in spring Hinatazaka46 unit songs were sung by the members, this time the focus was on songs sung at Christmas time.
With the traditional welcome by Hinatazaka46 Captain Sasaki Kumi, during which the group briefly sang “Santa is coming to town,” and who explained the evening’s proceedings, the show began with the O-Miso-Shiro Combi (Kawata Hina, Nibu Akari), who presented “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” in their typically cheerful style. This was followed by “Osaka LOVER” sung by the Princess Trio AyaMeiPan (Sasaki Mirei, Takamoto Ayaka, Higashimura Mei). The first block was concluded by Tomita Suzuka with her solo of ” Shiroi Koibitotachi”.
This was followed by a variety show element for which Hinatazaka46 members have become infamous, “White Boards.”
“Joy to the World!” with Miyata Manamo and Morimoto Marii started the second block. Kageyama Yuuka and Kanemura Miku presented “WHITE BREATH” in an energetic version inspired by T.M. Revolution. The otherwise quiet and shy Hamagishi Hiyori convinced with her emotional solo of ” Kibou no Hikari – Kiseki wo Shinjite”.
In the following show element, fans could participate in advance, the “Delusion Confession Request”.
The trio of Ushio Sarina, Nibu Akari and Yamaguchi Haruyo brought “AWATENBOU NO SANTA CLAUS” in the third block, followed by the opening “Danzen!” to the anime “Futari wa Pretty Cure” presented by Hinatazaka’s infamous duo Kato Shiho and Sasaki Kumi. To the solo “Dear… again” by Takase Mana, the fans made the hall shine in pink of her color.
After a block of Christmas fantasies, “Gori Gori Donuts” (Matsuda Konoka, Tomita Suzuka, Watanabe Miho) presented the well-known song “Dango 3 Kyodai”. Kamimura Hinano, Takahashi Mikuni followed with “Koibito ga Santa Claus.” Ushio Sarina, Sasaki Mirei, Takase Mana and Morimoto Marii then presented the worldwide known song “A Whole New World” from the movie “Alladin”.
With the intro to the Christmas hit song “Meri Kuri” from “BoA,” the hall shone in the white light of Saito Kyoko’s color. She presented the song with her unique voice and sang her way into the hearts of the fans and members. Many members could not hold back their tears of emotion during the song.
With a final moderation where all members sang the Hinatazaka46 hit song “Kyun”, Hinatazaka46 Captain Sasaki Kumi ended the show.
Two days later, the time had come, and this year’s Christmas version of Hinatazaka46 Overture kicked off the first day of the HinaKuri2021 concert.
Right to the hard beat and guitar sound of the first song “Additional Time”, which is highly praised by fans, the group heated up the fans in the sold-out venue of Makuhari Messe. The members danced in a combination of sky-blue hoody and white dress in front of a huge monitor wall.
Before the start of “Boudaina Yume ni Oshi Tsubasarete,” 21 cages illuminated in the group’s colors were lowered onto the stage to spherical sounds. With the intro to “Boudaina Yume ni Oshi Tsubasarete”, all 21 members appeared in the cages. Accompanied by a light and laser show, they danced the energetic choreography of the song. To conclude the opening set, the group sang the title song of the fourth single, “Sonna Koto Nai Yo.” Higashimura Mei, who was filling in for the absent Kosaka Nao as center, led the group through this fast-paced song.
Following was Hinatazaka46 Captain Sasaki Kumi’s greeting moderation, during which members expressed their expectations for HinaKuri2021.
To Christmas chimes, a mighty Christmas boot was lowered in front of a giant Christmas tree, and one Hinatazaka46 member after another appeared on stage with a giant candy cane in her hand. To the cheerful sounds of “Azato Kawaii,” the Christmas party began.
A dance performance by the 2nd and 3rd generation members gave the 1st generation of Hinatazaka46 the needed break to change for the following block.
The following block, which presented different songs on the two days, included songs from the three generations. The 1st Generation started with “Dousuru? Dousuru? Dousuru?” and “Suki to Iu Koto wa…” respectively, which was pushed through the rows of fans on trolleys in the costumes from the videos. This was followed by the 2nd generation, which was pushed through the sea of colors of light sticks of the fans, waving like the 1st Generation. The four mini stages around the four supporting columns of the hall were reserved for the four members of the 3rd Generation.
On the main stage, an angel appeared on the top of a small pyramid in person of Kato Shiho, who presented her current solo song “Nageki no Delete”.
The sheer size of the hall allowed a second large stage to be set up opposite the main stage. There, with the help of four Hinatazaka members, a small Christmas story was shown in the form of a shadow play, which served as an intro to “Masaka Guuzen…” by the Hanachanzu Duo (Tomita Suzuka, Matsuda Konoka).
A short time later, the members gathered there behind a rain curtain, which was also used as a projection screen. Afterwards, Hinatazaka’s diva, Saito Kyoko, led the group through the two most emotional songs the group has in its repertoire. The love song “Konna ni Suki ni Natchatte Ii no?” and “Kawa wa Nagareru” about life in the flow of time. The choreography of “CRE8BOY” impressively underlined the message of the two songs.
After a moderation during which little Christmas anecdotes were exchanged, Sasaki Kumi signaled the departure for the next block. Under a deafening whistle a steam locomotive of the class “Hinatazaka” appeared in Christmas illumination. The members quickly boarded the locomotive, and to the music of “Honto no Jikan,” the locomotive began its journey. During the ride, the members took the opportunity and eagerly waved to the fans and had fun with the cameras.
To “Nandodemo Nandodemo” the first center song by Kamimura Hinano, the locomotive returned to the starting point of the round and unloaded half of the members. Singing “Hinatazaka,” a song representative of the history of Hinatazak46, the other half was transported to the main stage.
After a short transition, things got fiery on the main stage. To an aggressive beat accompanied by pyrotechnic effects and a background of flames, Sasaki Mirei led her in red dressed half through a fiery choreography. A little later, behind the rain curtain on the second stage, the other half appeared under Kato Shiho, this time dressed in blue. A dance battle broke out between the two stages and literally swept the fans along, dividing the hall into a blue and a red half. The battle cumulated in the song “My Fans”. Trolleys were then quickly used to bring the blue members to the main stage and to “Kitsune” the two groups united.
Dancers in traditional Japanese festival attire with bamboo umbrellas appeared in front of an image of giant torri and initiated the next part. The members led by Kanemura Miku appeared in their Tteka outfits and presented to the title song of their current single “Tteka” a continuation of the music video with a fight against the carrot monster. And to put the icing on the cake of this energetic block, the current version of “Dare Yori mo Takaku Tobe!” was presented.
The last part of the concert started with an impressive laser show and the members appeared in the red Christmas costumes in which the group had appeared on the Japanese music show Music Station. Afterwards, to the song “Omoigakenai Double Rainbow”, the fans let the venue shine in the colours of a double rainbow. To conclude the concert, the members took a sleigh ride over the traditional rainbow to the sounds of “JOYFULL LOVE,” which fans have been creating with their light sticks since the song’s first live perfomance.
After a short closing moderation, in which Sasaki Kumi asked the fans to celebrate Christmas with Hinatazaka also in the next years, the members disappeared backstage to reappear after a short break for the encore.
With the song “Kimi Shika Katan”, a musical “You are the best” addressed to the fans, the encore was started. In the following moderation the members talked about their feelings during the concert. On the second day, Nibu Akari was allowed to fulfil herself a dream and, with the help of the fans, fired an orange Kame-Hame-Ha! wave through the hall. At the end of the moderation, Hinatazaka46 Captain Sasaki Kumi took the microphone again and thanked the fans in the hall and on the monitors for the wonderful concert. On the second day, she extended her speech with an announcement. A video announcing the Hinatazaka46 “3rd Anniversary Memorial LIVE – 3rd Hinatansei Festival” was shown. The Hinatazaka46 members took it upon themselves to announce Tokyo Dome as the venue for the festival from their own mouths. Many fans cheered or gasped in surprise.
In the announcement of “Yakusoku no Tamago,” the song about the place of their dreams, Sasaki Kumi recalled that the members, at that time still in their teens or early twenties, had been dreaming of a concert at Tokyo Dome since their 2015 debut as Hiragana Keyaki. In 2019 after changing their name to Hinatazaka46, they already saw the goal in front of them when with the Corona pandemic, the goal was pushed far away. The fact that the concert was postponed again reminded her of the hard fate of Hinatazaka46. However, even though the goal of their dreams was far away, all the members worked hard and with determination to achieve their goal. And Sasaki Kumi hopes that the concert at Tokyo Dome will bring a new era of live performances.
The two-day concert then came to an end to the music of “Yakusoku no Tamago”.
Hinatazaka46 Fuyu no Dai Unit Matsuri: X’mas Special
Santa is coming to the city – All
– Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer – Kawata Hina, Nibu Akari
– Osaka LOVER (DREAMS COME TRUE) – Sasaki Mirei, Takamoto Ayaka, Higashimura Mei
– Shiroi Koibitotachi (Kuwata Keisuke) – Tomita Suzuka (Solo)
MC Matsuda Konoka
– Joy to the World! – Miyata Manamo, Morimoto Marii
– WHITE BREATH (T.M.Revolution) – Kageyama Yuuka, Kanemura Miku
– Kibou no Hikari – Kiseki wo Shinjite (DREAM E-Girls) – Hamagishi Hiyori (Solo)
MC Miho Watanabe
Delusion Confession Request:
Ushio Sarina x Saito Kyoko
Tomita Suzuka x Morimoto Marii
Sasaki Mirei Ohisama Solo Request
Kanemura Miku Ohisama Solo Request
– AWATENBOU NO SANTA CLAUS – Ushio Sarina, Nibu Akari, Yamaguchi Haruyo
– DANZEN! Futari wa Pretty Cure – Kato Shiho, Sasaki Kumi
– DEAR…again(Hirose Komi) Takase Mana (Solo)
MC Kageyama Yuuka
Kamimura Hinano’s visit to Santa’s Home
Higashimura Mei’s Grandma
Kawata Hina Present for Hiyotan
Hamagishi Hiyori Kawata Santa
– Dango 3 Kyodai – Matsuda Konoka, Tomita Suzuka, Watanabe Miho
– Koibito ga Santa Claus (Matsutoya Yumi) – Kamimura Hinano, Takahashi Mikuni
– A Whole New World – Ushio Sarina, Sasaki Mirei, Takase Mana, Morimoto Marii
– Meri Kuri (BoA) – Saito Kyoko (Solo)
MC Sasaki Kumi
Kato Shiho “Toshi kyonde Unit Kumitai”
Sekiya-san L Senbatsu Kibo
Kyun – All
1. Additional Time
2. Boudaina Yume ni Oshi Tsubasarete
3. Sonna Koto Nai Yo
4. Azato Kawaii
5. 24th – Dousuru? Dousuru? Dousuru? / 25th – Suki to Iu Koto wa…
6. 24th – Chimoku ga Ainara / 25th – Sekai ni wa Thank you! ga Afureteiru
7. 24th – Right? / 25th – Kono Natsu wo Jam ni Shiyou
8. Nageki no Delete
9. Masaka Guuzen…
10. Konna ni Suki ni Natchatte Ii no?
11. Kawa wa Nagareru
12. Honto no Jikan
13. Nandodemo Nandodemo
15. My fans
18. Dare Yori mo Takaku Tobe! 2020
19. Omoigakenai Double Rainbow
20. JOYFUL LOVE
Encore 1 : Kimi Shika Katan
Encore 2: Yakusoku no Tamago 2020