68th NHK Kōhaku Uta Gassen

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68th Kouhaku logo.png
The 68th NHK Red & White Song Festival
Kouhaku 2017.jpg
Created by Tsumoru Kondo
Presented by Teruyoshi Uchimura
Maho Kuwako
Starring Kasumi Arimura
Kazunari Ninomiya
Judges Hifumi Katō
Ryohei Suzuki
Issei Takahashi
Mariko Hayashi
Nobuko Miyamoto
Mai Murakami
Ryōta Murata
Riho Yoshioka
Opening theme "Grand Opening"
Ending theme "Hotaru no Hikari"
Conductor: Shunichi Tokura
Composer(s) Takahiro Kaneko
Production
Executive producer(s) Yukinori Kida
Producer(s) Production Manager
Ryo Yajima

from AKB48 SHOW
Director
Tomoko Matsuda
Producer
Masashi Nishi
Production location(s) NHK Hall
Tokyo, Japan
Running time 1st Half: 1h40min
2nd Half: 2h45min
Production company(s) NHK
Release
Original network

NHK-General

NHK World Premium (Worldwide)
TV Japan (US)
Picture format HDTV 1080i
Super 8K (Ultra FullHD)
Original release December 31, 2017 (2017-12-31)
19:15 – 23:45 JST
(5 minute break for news)
Chronology
Preceded by 67th (2016)
Followed by 69th (2018)
External links
Website

The 68th NHK Kōhaku Uta Gassen (第68回NHK紅白歌合戦) was the 68th edition of annual NHK's Kōhaku Uta Gassen, held in December 31, 2017 live from NHK Hall (Tokyo, Japan). It was broadcast in Japan through NHK General Television (TV) and NHK Radio 1 (Radio), and worldwide through NHK World Premium and TV Japan (in US). This year, the conductor of the festival's closing theme "Hotaru no Hikari" will be replaced by Shunichi Tokura, due to the death of Masaaki Hirao on July 21, 2017.

Broadcast runs from 19:15 (JST) to 23:45 (JST), with a 5-minute break for the latest news. This is the 29th Heisei Era edition.

White team won this event with 2,237,644 votes, thus making the 37th overall victory from Shirogumi.

Broadcast and possible final edition from Heisei[edit]

Broadcast time was announced on September 7.[1] This year's theme, "Let's Sing a Dream" (夢を歌おう) remains unchanged until the 70th edition (2019), in support of the upcoming 2020 Summer Olympics and 2020 Summer Paralympics.[2] The 68th Kouhaku airs on December 31 (Sunday), starting from 19:15 JST and ending at 23:45 JST, with a 5-minute break for the latest news.[1] In Japan, the broadcast takes place through NHK-G and Radio 1, and worldwide by NHK World Premium and TV Japan. In United States, the show is broadcast through TV Japan, starting around 15:10 (Eastern Time). Viewers outside Japan (except US) can watch Kouhaku on NHK World Premium, starting at 10:15 UTC, the same time as the NHK-G broadcast.

This is the 29th and penultimate edition of the program in the Heisei Period, because of the possible abdication of Emperor Akihito, already scheduled for March 31, 2019. The Kouhaku has already undergone a transition of periods. The 39th edition (last of the Showa Period) was held a week before Hirohito's death, and the 40th edition was the first ever in Heisei. The show will go through a new era transition in 2019, with the 70th edition being the first under a new Japanese imperial era.

On November 13, NHK announced their team leaders. Once again, Kasumi Arimura will be the captain from red team, while Kazunari Ninomiya from Arashi will serve as captain from white team for the 6th time (counted with other 5 times while Arashi served as captains). Japanese comedian Teruyoshi Uchimura will be the mediator, thus making the second edition in a row to not repeat mediator from previous edition.

On November 16, the list of program artists was revealed and a press conference announcing the participants took place. The second mediator NHK news anchor Maho Kuwako was also announced.[3] Namie Amuro, who is set to retire September next year, was not confirmed to appear. NHK production manager Ryo Yajima made a statement saying that negotiations for her appearance are still ongoing.[4] On December 19, Amuro was confirmed to appear on Kōhaku as a special guest.[5][6]

On December 7, it was announced that Shunichi Tokura is the new conductor of the closing theme, "Hotaru no Hikari", replacing Masaaki Hirao, who passed away in July. The guest judges were revealed on December 20.[7] On December 22, Keisuke Kuwata was announced to appear as a special guest.[8] The song list was revealed on December 23.[9]

On December 29, rehearsals from the main event has been started. Namie Amuro and Keisuke Kuwata (Special Acts) will perform before the final acts (Sayuri Ishikawa and Yuzu) prior the announcement of the winning team.

Personnel[edit]

Main hosts and team leaders[edit]

Mediators
Team Leaders

Live Comments[edit]

  • Announcer NHK Radio 1: Tomoko Kogou, Naoki Ninomiya
  • PR, Commentary ("Ura Talk Channel"): Bananaman, Ai Tsukahara
  • Live Stream ("Back Stage Talk"): Naomi Watanabe

Judges[edit]

Live Music Performance[edit]

Special Guests[edit]

Other Guests[edit]

Contestants[edit]

Debuting or returning artists are in bold.

Red Team White Team
Singer/Group Performance Time Singer/Group Performance Time
Ai 3 Arashi 9
E-girls 5 Hiroshi Itsuki 47
Sayuri Ishikawa 40 X Japan 8
Yukino Ichikawa 2 Elephant Kashimashi Debut
AKB48 10 Kanjani8 6
Midori Oka Debut Hiromi Go 30
Mai Kuraki 4 Sandaime J Soul Brothers 6
Keyakizaka46 2 Sekai no Owari 4
Fuyumi Sakamoto 29 Sexy Zone 5
Ringo Sheena 5 Takehara Pistol Debut
Shishamo Debut Tortoise Matsumoto Debut
Aya Shimazu 4 Tokio 24
Superfly 2 Kiyoshi Hikawa 18
Mariko Takahashi 5 Ken Hirai 8
Yoshimi Tendo 22 Kohei Fukuda 4
Twice Debut Masaharu Fukuyama 10
Kana Nishino 8 Hey! Say! JUMP Debut
Nogizaka46 3 Gen Hoshino 3
Perfume 10 Daichi Miura Debut
Takako Matsu 3 Hiroshi Miyama 3
Seiko Matsuda 21 Keisuke Yamauchi 3
Kaori Mizumori 15 Yuzu 8
Little Glee Monster Debut WANIMA Debut

Artists not attending this year[edit]

RED TEAM
Ayaka, Ikimonogakari, Hikaru Utada, Shinobu Otake, Kaori Kozai, PUFFY, Miwa
WHITE TEAM
Kenta Kiritani, Kinki Kids, The Yellow Monkey, AAA, V6, Radwimps, Radio Fish

Debuting artists[edit]

Ten artists are attending for the first time

  • Daichi Miura celebrated his 20th anniversary since debuting as a member of Folder in 1997. Since making his solo debut in 2005, he has become known for his powerful singing and outstanding dancing skills. His single, "Excite", placed number one on the Oricon weekly single chart.[11]
  • Hey! Say! JUMP celebrated their 10th anniversary. Members Yamada and Chinen have participated four times as NYC (60th–63rd).[12]
  • Elephant Kashimashi celebrated their 30th anniversary. They embarked on a forty-seven prefecture anniversary tour in April.[13]
  • Tortoise Matsumoto has appeared with his band Ulfuls two times (47th and 52nd). His duet song with Ringo Sheena, "The Main Street", was used as the CM song for the luxury shopping complex Ginza Six.[14]
  • SHISHAMO's song, "Ashita mo", was used as the theme song for a mobile phone commercial (NTT DoCoMo).[15]
  • Takehara Pistol's song, "Yo, Soko no Wakai no", was used as the theme song for a Sumitomo Life Insurance commercial. The song was a "long hit".[16]
  • Wanima's song, "Yattemiyo", was used as the theme song for a mobile phone commercial (au). The commercial and song became hot topics and the song was a hit.[17]
  • Little Glee Monster performed at the Nippon Budokan January this year. Tickets to their concert sold out in just one minute. The group, who are all in their teens, made their major label debut in 2014. They are popular among people of all ages and are known for their solid singing skills.[18]
  • TWICE debuted in Japan this year. "TT pose", which is part of the choreography for TT, became a trend for young women in Japan. Their debut single, "One More Time", placed number one on the Oricon weekly single chart.[19]
  • Enka singer Midori Oka released her first album this year. She also performed her first solo concert.[20]

Returning artists[edit]

Four artists are returning.

  • Matsu Takako sang the theme song for NHK's 97th asadora, Warotenka. She has performed at Kohaku two times. Her last appearance was in 1999 for the 50th edition.[21]
  • Mai Kuraki sang the theme song for the film Detective Conan: Crimson Love Letter.[22] Her song, "Togetsukyo (Kimi Omou)", charted for 31 weeks on the Oricon weekly single chart. It was later named "the best-selling physical single by female solo singer in 2017". Kuraki has sung twenty-one theme songs for the Detective Conan animation series. In July, she was awarded Guinness World Record for "most theme songs sung by the same artist for an animation series".[23] Kuraki has performed at Kohaku three times. Her last appearance was in 2005 for the 56th edition.

Performance Order[edit]

Red Team White Team
Order Singer/Group Appearances Song Order Singer/Group Appearances Song
First Part
2 Little Glee Monster Debut "Suki da" ~Yume o Utaō ver.~ 1 Hey! Say! JUMP Debut "Come On A My House"
4 E-girls 5 "Love ☆ Queen" 3 Keisuke Yamauchi 3 "Ai ga Shinjirarenainara" ~Seme Kimiko-tachi Budōkai"
5 Shishamo Debut "Ashita mo" ~Kōhaku 2017 ver.~ 6 Hiroshi Miyama 3 "Otoko no Ryūgi" ~Kendama Sekai Kiroku e no Michi~
7 Ai x Naomi Watanabe 3 "Kirakira" 8 Takehara Pistol Debut "Yō, Soko no Wakai no"
9 Midori Oka Debut "Sado no Yūbue" 10 Sexy Zone 5 "Gyutto"
11 Yukino Ichikawa 2 "Jinsei Ichiro" 12 Kohei Fukuda 4 "Ōshō"
14 Yoshimi Tendo 22 "Dōtonbori Ninjō" 13 Sandaime J Soul Brothers 6 "Happy" ~Kōhaku Special Version~
16 Mai Kuraki 4 "Togetsukyo (Kimi Omou)" 15 Sekai no Owari 4 "Rain"
17 Twice Debut "TT (Japanese Ver.)" 18 Daichi Miura Debut Daichi Miura Kōhaku Special
19 Kaori Mizumori 15 "Hayatomo no Seto" 20 WANIMA Debut "Tomoni"
21 Aya Shimazu 4 "The Rose" 22 Go Hiromi 30 "2-oku 4-sen-man no Hitomi" ~GO! GO! Bubble Remix~
Halftime Show (presented by Kazunari Ninomiya)[24]
Naomi Watanabe - "Poker Face", "Born This Way"
Chiemi Blouson - "with B"
Austin Mahone - "Dirty Work"
Second Part
23 Keyakizaka46 2 "Fukyōwaon" 24 Kanjani Eight 6 "Nagurigaki Beat"
26 Fuyumi Sakamoto 29 "Otoko no Hi Matsuri" 25 Masaharu Fukuyama 10 "Tomoe Gakuen"
27 Kana Nishino 8 "Pa!" 28 Tokio 24 "Ambitious Japan"
30 Nogizaka46 3 "Influencer" 29 Hiroshi Itsuki 47 "Yozora"
Special Project - "Itsudemo Yume wo"
Hiyokko Special (Part 1)
31 Seiko Matsuda 21 "Atarashii Ashita" 32 Ken Hirai 8 "Non-fiction"
33 Ringo Sheena (5) & Tortoise Matsumoto (Debut) "The Main Street"
34 Perfume 10 "Tokyo Girl" 35 X Japan 8 Endless Rain 2017 Kōhaku Special
36 AKB48 10 Shichō-sha ga Eranda Yume no Kōhaku SP Medley 37 Elephant Kashimashi Debut "Koyoi no Tsuki no yō ni"
38 Takako Matsu 3 "Ashita wa Dokokara" 39 Gen Hoshino 3 "Family Song"
40 Superfly 2 "Ai o Komete Hanataba o" N/A
Hiyokko Special (Part 2)
N/A 41 Arashi 9 Arashi x Kōhaku Special Medley
42 Mariko Takahashi 5 "For You..." 43 Kiyoshi Hikawa 18 "Kiyoshi no Zunodokobushi"
Namie Amuro - "Hero"
Keisuke Kuwata - "Wakai Hiroba"
44 Sayuri Ishikawa 40 "Tsugaru Kaikyō Fuyugeshiki" 45 Yuzu 8 "Eikō no Kakehashi"
"Hotaru no Hikari" (Ending theme, conducted by Shunichi Tokura)
Songs performed on Medleys
  • Little Glee Monster: "Jupiter", "Suki da"
  • Daichi Miura: "Cry & Fight", Excite
  • AKB48: "Ōgoe Diamond", "365-nichi no Kamihikōki", "11gatsu no Anklet"
  • X Japan: "Endless Rain", "Kurenai"
  • Arashi: "Guts!", "Doors (Yūki no Kiseki)"

Final Results & Ratings[edit]

Final Results[25]
Votes Red team White team
Partials
Overall 1,432,371 2,237,644
Individual Results
NHK Hall
DTV 1,431,292 2,236,339
NHK Hall 1,079 1,305
Winning Team: White
Ratings
Kanto:35.8% (1st Part) & 39.4% (2nd Part)[26]
Kansai: (1st Part) & (2nd Part)

Notes[edit]

  • Daichi Miura and Arashi were the first artists confirmed for this edition. Miura's "Excite" was released in January and topped #1 in Oricon Weekly Single Charts, and also contributed for "Mecha-Mecha Ikteru". Arashi was also confirmed for the conformation of Kazunari Ninomiya as white team's leader for the 6th time. Other Johnny's group confirmeed to debut is Hey! Say! JUMP.
  • AKB48, Keyakizaka46 & Nogizaka46 were confirmed for this Kouhaku. AKB48 currently is the best selling female artist after surpass Ayumi Hamasaki. Nogizaka46 has sold 2 million with "Influencer" and "Nigemizu". This will be the last time AKB48 Member Mayu Watanabe will perform with the group. After rumours denied, Keyakizaka46 is confirmed. Once again, the two groups of the Sakamichi Series will perform the same night.
  • The first confirmed embezzlements for this Kouhaku are: Ikimonogakari and Masaaki Hirao. The first (performed 9 times overall) announced indefinished hiatus in early January. The second, who participated four times overall in the program and was also the conductor of the closing theme "Hotaru no Hikari" (between 2006 and 2016), died on July 21, 2017, due to pneumonia.[27]
  • This is the first edition to be held on Sunday since 2006 (57th).
  • Masaharu Fukuyama's performance on Kouhaku was held from a remote location, due to his "New Year's Eve Countdown Concert", on Pacifico Plaza.
  • E-girls will have their first appearance on Kouhaku after the lineup changes from E★G Family.
  • Five artists performed their Medleys: AKB48, Arashi, Daichi Miura, Little Glee Monster and X Japan.
  • Hiroshi Itsuki's performance from "Yozora" is dedicated in memory of Masaaki Hirao.
  • Debuting artists Hey! Say! JUMP and Little Glee Monster will be the first to perform on this Kouhaku. Sayuri Ishikawa and Yuzu will serve as this year's "Ootori".
  • "Grand Opening" sequence was inspired on western musicals, such as La La Land.
  • During X Japan's performance, Yoshiki played drums for the first time since his neck surgery.
  • "Hotaru no Hikari" arrangement for the 68th edition is very different from the other years, with a key Eb.

References[edit]

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  2. ^ テーマ第67回NHK紅白歌合戦 夢を歌おう (in Japanese). Japan Broadcasting Corporation. 2016-09-08. Retrieved 2016-11-24.
  3. ^ 出場歌手 (in Japanese). Japan Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 2017-11-16. Retrieved 2017-11-16.
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  16. ^ 竹原ピストル、紅白初出場に喜び語る「父ちゃん、母ちゃん喜ぶだろうな~」 (in Japanese). The Hochi Shimbun. 2017-11-16. Archived from the original on 2012-12-02. Retrieved 2017-12-02.
  17. ^ 第68回NHK紅白歌合戦:三太郎で人気のWANIMAが初出場 「取り消しにならないように全力で」 (in Japanese). Mantan Web. 2017-11-16. Archived from the original on 2017-12-02. Retrieved 2017-12-02.
  18. ^ リトグリ初紅白「夢見ていた」、初武道館は1分完売 (in Japanese). Nikkan Sports News. 2017-11-16. Archived from the original on 2012-12-02. Retrieved 2017-12-02.
  19. ^ TWICE初紅白 韓国グループ6年ぶり「光栄」 (in Japanese). Oricon News. 2017-11-16. Archived from the original on 2017-11-16. Retrieved 2017-12-02.
  20. ^ 丘みどり、紅白初出場「天国の母との約束果たせた」 (in Japanese). The Hochi Shimbun. 2017-11-16. Archived from the original on 2012-12-02. Retrieved 2017-12-02.
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  25. ^ 結果発表 (in Japanese). NHK. 2017-12-31. Archived from the original on 2017-12-31. Retrieved 2017-12-31.
  26. ^ 「紅白」後半視聴率 安室出演も歴代ワースト3位39・4% 前年下回り2年ぶり大台40%割れ (in Japanese). Sports Nippon Newspapers. 2018-01-02. Archived from the original on 2018-01-02. Retrieved 2018-01-02.
  27. ^ "Masaaki Hirao, composer of "Galaxy Express 999", passes away". Ani.me.