Macross The Musicalture (マクロス ザ・ミュージカルチャー Makurosu Za Myūjikaruchā) is a jukebox stage musical that was held from October 3 to 8, 2012. It was part of the "Macross 30th Anniversary Project" which celebrates the original release of the Super Dimension Fortress Macross television series. All eight performances were performed at Tokyo Dome City.
The Musicalture was released in 2012 to coincide with the "Macross 30th Anniversary Project" of the Macross series. The first performance debuted on October 3, 2012, which was the 30th year since the airing of the first episode of the Super Dimension Fortress Macross television series (October 3, 1982). The long-running series has always place great importance to "song", and this is the franchise's first attempt at an original, story-based musical.
This jukebox musical features a completely original story which uses existing songs throughout the series. The Musicalture is set in A.D. 2062, three years after the events of Macross Frontier. Like Macross 7 and Frontier, the story takes place on yet another Macross class long-distance fleet convoy cruising through the universe, depicting civilian life in the city aboard the Macross 29 (pronounced two nine). The story contains the traditional "triangular relationship", and at least five Divas sing throughout the show. In order to emphasize the experience of a live performance and emotions on stage, a full recorded version of the musical was never released.
The musical's protagonist, Sakura Crawford, is played by Kasumi Yoshii of the Japanese pop idol group 9nine. Actress Yuki Kataki, who received a special jury award in the "Actress Wing" division of the "Miss Macross 30 Contest" Project, made her debut stage performance as a member of the cast.
Two major cast members were changed following the production announcement to the final performance. Takuya Kikuchi, who played the role of Vigo Walgria, was given to Yusuke Hirose. Sayaka Kanda was released two days before her first performance due to acute gastroenteritis, and Mayu Tomita served as her replacement.
The Musicalture is set in A.D. 2062, with the citizens of the once prosperous 29th Super Long Distance Colony Emigrant Fleet, known as Macross 29 (two-nine), facing social unrest and economic collapse. This crisis has led to rise of the "Neo-Zentran" movement, a revival of the Zentradi warrior principles. Spearheading this rise is the idealistic Vigo Walgria, a Zentran who intends to run for mayor of City 29, and wishes to reshape the "Neo-Zentran" as a legitimate political party.
Somewhere in City 29, Ash Anderson and Sakura Crawford are hard at work at the local "Nyan-Nyan" Chinese restaurant and are taken aback when they see their long-lost childhood friend, Vigo running for office. Ash and Vigo had once dreamed of becoming professional dancers, while Sakura a singer in their youth, but five years ago, the city became engulfed in "Neo-Zentran" riots. The city was plunged into chaos, and Ash tragically lost his leg while protecting Sakura. Ash and Sakura realized they had to give up their ambitions while Vigo mysteriously vanished, only to reappear then as a candidate for the people that destroyed their dreams. As they sing about their feelings, former Zentradi rebels, now the fairly campy staff of the restaurant, also join in song. Meanwhile, Ash works on "El", a Cyberoid he found abandoned in the streets of City 29.
Meanwhile, the current Mayor, Serge Coban Glass, is upset at Vigo's surging popularity is encouraged by his daughter, Charlotte Marion=Glass to revive the "Miss Macross Contest", in hopes of revitalizing the city and improve his declining ratings. Vigo suddenly appears in the "Nyan-Nyan" restaurant and speaks to Sakura, encouraging her to join the contest. Sakura realizes this was an opportunity and decides to join in hopes to realize their lost dream and to encourage the melancholic Ash, who wallows in despair with his sexy robot friend, "El".
Word of the contest spreads, and Vigo's sister, Daryl Walgria announces she will join the contest as well, along with the Mayor's daughter, Charlotte Marion=Glass. The sultry Sonia Dosel, granddaughter of Space War I veteran Loli Dosel and owner of the "Nyan-Nyan" restaurant, also announces her decision to join the competition. For some reason, El joins as well. Each of these young girls are determined to win no matter what.
Unbeknownst to his friends, Vigo is actually working within the "Neo-Zentran" in order to reform it and never let anything like the riots of the past ever happen again. Vigo's deputy, Zegand, upset at his idealistic and pacifist ways, plots to take over. However, he has taken a liking to Vigo's sister, Daryl, who is busy practicing singing "Holy Lonely Light". Her brother encourages Daryl to sing in hopes of showing the "Neo Zentran" the beauty of "Culture".
On the day of the "Miss Macross" contest, Mayor Serge abuses his mayoral privileges and enter the contestant's changing room, and attempts to bribe the ladies to drop out of the contest with Starlight Natto. Charlotte, enraged at her father's attempted crime, tells him to go back to his "Dog House", and the mayor slinks away, barking like a dog.
During the contest itself, Daryl, Sonia, Sakura, El and Charlotte successfully enter the final round. El sings a pitch-perfect "Voices" to the surprise of the audience. Suddenly, Zegand betrays Vigo and takes over the contest venue, and seizes government power by force. Ash lets bygones be bygones and attempts to save Vigo, but is caught by Zegand's minions.
In this dire time, Sakura begins singing, which calms the rampaging "Neo Zentran" troops. Each contest then joins one another and sing. The confusion works to Ash and Vigo's advantage, and the duo assemble their allies and finally capture Zegand.
Vigo immediately assumes responsibility for the actions of his organization, but Mayor Serge proposes to work together for the sake of the people. He sentences Vigo and his "Neo Zentran" cohorts to serve as back-up dancers. The "Miss Macross" contest is postponed to the following week, and soon, they re-brand the Macross 29 as a fleet that will push "Culture" across the galaxy. The winners of the "Miss Macross" contest would be sent on a tour throughout the galaxy, with back-up dancers in tow. Ash and Vigo, finally at peace with one another, become the dancers the always dreamed of being, and Sakura swears, "My song will shake the galaxy!"
For fans who couldn't make it to the 30th anniversary festivities, Big West posted a three minute digest video of Macross: The Musicalture.
- Sakura Crawford
- Ash Anderson
- Charlotte Marion=Glass
- Daryl Walgria
- Sonia Dosel
- Serge Coban Glass
The musical was well received, delighting long-time fans with various covers of classic Lynn Minmay songs and even a few songs by Basara Nekki and Sheryl Nome. Many found the lead who played Sakura Crawford cute and "genki". Some female fans were surprised that 80% of the audience were male, seeing it was a musical led by numerous female protagonists. The dances and musical portions were deemed excellent, and the cast was consistent throughout all eight performances.
Notes & Trivia
- Catherine Glass, the cousin of Charlotte Marion=Glass, was once a contestant of the "Miss Macross" contest.
- The Macross 29 is devoid of any mecha or variable fighters, as they had adopted a pacifist nature.
- The speciality of the "Nyan-Nyan" restaurant on Macross 29 is the jumbo-sized "Galaxy Ramen".
- City 29's Mayor, Serge Glass, is the cousin of the then-diseased Mayor Howard Glass of the Macross Frontier fleet.
- Directed by: Isamu Ayano
- Production assistant: Iseki Reiko
- Screenplay: Mitsui Hideki
- Stage director: Takeshi Motoki
- Stage music: Takeshi Sakabe
- Choreography: Shinnosuke Motoyama
- Killing: Daisuke Shimizu (Japanese sword)
- Art: Motoe Yoshiharu
- Hair makeup design: Yoshiko Matsushita
- Costume: Takeshi Kimura
- Character design: left
- Supervision: Shōji Kawamori
- Executive producer: Kamon Onishi
- Producer: Tatsuya Miyake, Shinichi Hirai
- Associates producer: Makoto Matsuda
- Planning cooperation: Nerke Planning
- Production: Brains and Hearts
- Organized by: Big West / Big West Frontier