Hatsune Miku Artpop Ball Full Report

artpopI was one of the lucky ones to go to he Lady Gaga concert to check out the show first hand. I hope to bring some insight to further eliminate any rumors or hesitation to the show to begin with. Before I speak and give you all information on this, let me give you a background on me and my musical taste and how I approach things before you allow my opinion to influence you. This way you can make a more informed decision on what you plan to do.

I am a media professional, I worked in radio for Atlanta’s Project 96.1 as an intern and various projects with Clear Channel. I hosted and produced concerts for local indie bands, including bands such as From First to Last and Atilla before they became big time names in their respective industry. I have always been a fan of Jpop with Ayumi Hamasaki and T.M. Revolution being the first Jpop artists I started listening to. When I look at concerts or shows, I look at the entertainment value and quality of the show production.

Before the concert, I had a meal with some Little Monster fans and friends of mine, I educated my friends on the wonders of Vocaloid and how the program creates Hatsune Miku’s voice. I was sporting my only Vocaloid shirt that consists of the crew walking across Abby Road, a tribute to the Beatles. As of late, I have been studying how to produce music and know a lot of different things around Vocaloid and explained the complexities of the program and production method that I have learned to this date. Everyone expressing great respect and appreciation toward the cause. They also educated me on the more finer details and obsessive passion for Lady Gaga, the same tonality that I used expressing my appreciation for Vocaloid and Hatsune Miku.

This was going to be a fun and educational night. More simply, because we were all passionate about the reasons we were going.

As I get to the Phillips Arena and park, it’s 10 minutes on the clock to the 7:30 doors open time. I get into the Arena and look around for a Merch table for Miku, unfortunately, I couldn’t find one. I only stayed on one side of the arena as it was closest to my parking spot and I wanted fast escape when the show was over. So unfortunately, I made it the night without buying anything to remember the night for Miku.

I make it to the Phillips pit area on the floor and wait patiently, the overpriced water running $5 and $8.50 for a beer, if you’re into that sort of thing. Not the concerts fault, but the venue for sure. As I am waiting, I am parked next to some tweeny aged girls that have that high pitched winny voice going on and on about Gaga and how they cannot wait to see her “OMG!!!”. So be warned, you’re going to have to accept this or appreciate this, as there was an abundance of this. After waiting around 15 minutes, the lights go dim the crowed goes wild.

The show starts at 8pm and the Miku makes her US concert Debut. Mesmerizing many who have never seen this. I notice a bunch of phones set to record video and shortly after the show find them being posted by our affiliates and more. New travels fast on the first US experience of the Miku Tour with Gaga. This is the first actual TOUR and not just a single show in LA.

With all the awe, I still don’t feel the passion as you would see it in the prior concerts and I am certain it may have to do with the fact that there is no interactive element to it. Miku still talks in Japanese when addressing the audience, in which I’m sure the audience has no clue what she is saying in Japanese.

There are three nets setup with a projector behind. The center net is Miku’s and there are additional projections made on the two side screens where two dancers do come out to impose a silhouette over the screens, which does add a little more to the experience, but depending on the angle you are viewing, the dancers can be seen through Miku on the main screen.

Overall, the songs presented were nothing new if you have played the new Project Diva F2 game and are familiar with the concerts. There was no show of any of the other Vocaloids, so if you came to see an appearance of Rin, Len, or Luka, no luck here. Strictly a solo act for Miku and she looks so lonely.

Some of the more poppy hits did get a better reaction with hands waving in the air and people dancing. This was I think 5 songs into the set. So, it seems that it started to grow on more people as it progressed. There is HOPE!

To sum it down, I had a really good time and really enjoyed the experience. I did cry just a little bit in happiness to see this first hand. I stayed for all of Lady Gaga’s show and I have to say that the entire concert was impressive. I have a deep amount of respect for Lady Gaga and the message she brings now. After seeing the concert, the people that attend the show and experiencing it myself, Miku couldn’t have had any better of a host to help introduce her to US.

Lady Gaga pushes for that individuality in all of us, and lets face it, we are special.

As a side note, I don’t normally write a lot, so please forgive my lack of Journalistic quality, I leave that up to Scott or Johnny, so this is just my own personal log of events. Thanks!


  1. Blake gearin says:

    I was there and it was funny when miku showed up cause nobody knew who she was

    • xian says:

      I don’t think people really knew what it was. But they did start liking it toward the end from what I saw in the pit.

  2. John Stankus says:

    As someone who went to the Mikunopolis concert in L.A and a massive Miku fan I do not agree with some of the opinions in the article. Also the wording “US concert debut” is wrong she already debuted in July 2011 and was a smashing success selling out 6000 seats in less than a week! Toyota also sponsored her for the Camry that same year she was even on posters during the L.A auto show. Having said that I do not believe she needs an introduction. It is my opinion that Lady Gaga just wants to be remembered and cares little for Miku. The evidence I use for all that is Miku has held 15+ concerts/screenings and she has attended 0 of them though she has enough money to go attend all of them. Miku has been around since 2007 and yet she finally tweets about her for the first time this year. Now sorry but I know she knew about her before than I mean she does go to Japan where Miku is massively insanely popular. Third her choice in video clip to use is 2 years old meaning she just went and grabbed the first video she saw. Also going back to being remembered she is using Miku for only that purpose it’s why she wears those wacky outfits to music awards like the meat outfit. People remember the meat outfit but who remembers what anyone else wore at that event.I just cannot bring myself to like her because she is fake in her reasons for using Miku and I am way to big a fan to enjoy watching her being used.

    Just my opinions on this whole subject

    • xian says:

      It’s show business. The World is Mine video is used by marketing as it’s the top video online featuring Miku and is definitely the most well known. I don’t think you should put to much thought into the credibility of Gaga as a fan and focus more on the fact that as a professional she recognizes this unique art form which is the mission of her tour. Just because you have money to see a show also doesn’t mean you can because of personal life and so on…once again, I see your view, but I just don’t think you should put to much investment in it and enjoy it for what it is. Pure entertainment. Also, I was never a real fan of Gaga, but after attending the whole show, it was really worth the $100 ticket to see first hand. Just overall great experience. Thanks for the feedback!

  3. Meme says:

    Cant really call it her US debut or introducing her to the US as there has been vocaloid concerts over there before like The L.A. Mikunopolis…. I dont really wanna be critical but it doesnt seem you have done any research before writing this article at all!

    • xian says:

      I know about the concert and even mention it in the article. As corrected above, I meant to say Tour Debut and not concert debut. Thanks for the feedback and I hope to hear more from our listeners!

  4. Carlos says:

    Ahhhhh!!! I love you miku… Eso gritaria si estuviera mirando en el concierto… Bella miku como siempre!!!


  5. Brent says:

    Nice article….

    My gripe is that, the L.A concert was the true U.S debut that sold out at the Nokia theater, just because She opened for Gaga doesn’t mean anything… and you cant pretend that Mikunopolis 2011 never happend.

    If the whole vocaloid show came to the U.S to tour; I think it would have done extremely well, she sold out in L.A, she can sell out anywhere else.

    After all, if J-Rock Group L’Arc-en-Ciel was a headliner at Madison Square Garden and sold it out; there is no reason why Miku and friends, Babymetal, or any act from Japan can do the same.

    Besides if I wanted to listen to U.S. pop music: I would, but I dont; that is why I listen to Japanese music 80% of the time…

    • xian says:

      Your right, I accidentally used tour and concert interchangeably. The context was lost in saying it was her first concert debut and was meant to say tour debut. Thanks for the feedback!

  6. Lilrq says:

    As a critic though, the presentation was good and No one really got into World Is Mine and Story Rider as far as i know.

    2d Fever, Tell Your Word and Glass Wall got people into this as far as i know professionally even though im 15.

    Over all, the opening act (as a whole) was a MEH (Dont know and Dont give a buck)

    It would of worked out if Rin was there with the song “Kokoro” but hey, once again its a Lady Gaga concert, u dont go “fan girl” over lady gaga once u herd that she brought Hatsune miku to her world tour.

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