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On 27th November 2015, three Macross fans, Vanpang, VF25-F and Rafe went to the Anime Festival Asia 2015 (AFA 2015). The event was the biggest ACG event in South East Asia and was held on the 27th to the 29th November at Suntec Convention Center, Singapore. This time the I Love Anisong theme is ‘REBOOT’. Meaning, the folks at AFA decided to revamp their artist line up with those that have never performed at AFASG before. Among those are BACK-ON, bless 4, nano, Lia, P’s Live!, ZAQ and Mika Kobayashi. The only ones that remained were GARNiDELia who debut in AFASG last year and the Galactic Fairy herself, May’n. May’n, having a busy schedule flew into Singapore only on the 28th. The next morning, we can hear her doing her performance rehearsal (Chase the World) before the main stage opened to the public on the 29th. Soon afterwards she would appear at the autograph booth to hand out signed posters to lucky winners of those that had bought the VIP concert tickets. Soon after that May’n is rushed off to the Interview and Animax promotion session. Next up is the "I Love Anisong" line up for the concert that evening. After the introduction of the respective artistes ended, it’s time for her to appear at the NHK World booth to interact with her fans and engage them in a game of ‘Rock, Paper & Scissors’. Of which everyone will go against May’n, the last 3 that remained standing will get an autograph from her, as well as a pix with everyone while she wore a ‘DOMO’ (NHK’s brown colored mascot) t-shirt. Video link : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRWH0DX5Y08 I Love Anisong Concert At 6.30pm, I Love Anisong concert started. As usual, May’n segment was the last act of the evening. Immediately we noticed something different. There’s 2 dancers – normal. Then….there’s a band! A 3 piece band (lead and base guitarists and a drummer) Looks like she wants to make this AFA a special one for us! May’n started with “Chase the World”, next is a “Giant Step!” She then debut for us “Dawn of Logos”( the 2nd OP song for the anime ‘Aquarion Logos’). Then the song that made May’n who she is today, the popular song from Macross Frontier, “Diamond Crevasse!” A short break and then it’s “Yamadere Darling”, followed by “Kohaku” and “Dare Ga Tame Ni” (insert song for M3). All 3 songs – a first at AFA. Then it’s something familiar – "Vivid!" And the crowd goes wild! As each song begin, Macross member, VF25-F, would keep track of the sequence of the songs and type on his mobile phone the title and we noticed something unusual. We were quite sure it has already past 6 songs and she’s still going. Then came the song that was not sang at Budokan – “Lion”! The song was befitting as this is Singapore, the Lion City! Somehow the crowd also felt that it’s the last song and so they went all out cheering and waving their lights sticks! With that being the last song (9 songs with the usual being 6 songs), she introduced her team, there is a 6th member – probably a manipulator, because we can hear instruments that are not played by the band. She then does what she does in Budokan, held hands with members of her band. At this point, the crowd got excited and she put her finger on her lips to quiet down the crowd. May’n then shouted at the top of her voice ‘ARIGATO!’ and bowed. The crowd responded with a loud cheer! She waved good bye as she went off stage and with that, AFASG 2015 ends. Interview session with May’n, 29th November AFASG2015 The interview was conducted in a group session and translated to English through a translator, as such some details may be lost in translation. Q : Could you tell us a little about your 10th Anniversary Concert, your personal feelings performing for your fans who are there to celebrate it with you. May’n : In 2015 I’ve welcomed my 10th Anniversary, and in 2014 to 2015 I have done a bit of World Tour, Singapore was one of the stops for it. And I’m really happy that I got a chance to meet many, many more fans and to get a chance to do a solo that I really liked to do. The Budokan concert was something to celebrate my 10th year in showbiz and a grand completion of my works up to now and like to present to my fans from now on as a way to express what’s my goals and my aim for a career as a musician after my 10th Anniversary. Q : When u first started as an artist, who and what inspired you? May’n : Amuro Namia inspired me. When I was young, I would think - how nice if I could dance and sing like her. That encouraged me to be a singer. Q : As your 12th single is coming out, could you tell us a little about it? May’n : In the song, Dawn of LOGOS, it is really an expressive song, I put in a lot of feelings when I delivered it. It also feel like I’m singing about the life of the characters – the song really relate with my daily life experiences as well. It is now my 10th Anniversary and will be my 11th year soon, and so I am thinking how I shall move to further heights through my music. Q : You been a regular Anisong singer since 2008, in which AFA concert did you find it the most fun and interesting & why? May’n : It’s really difficult to choose a single year, because each year it’s a different presentation, last year the crowd was cheering my name when I came on stage, the cheering touched me very much and hope that I can give you all better performances. Q : What challenges that you faced as a singer? May’n : Not so much of difficulties but in spring this year I was hospitalized by a throat infection but I managed to get back on my feet and do my 10th Anniversary concert in Budokan & Singapore but regretted that I did not take good care of myself. This however made me think how should I want to move on to my 11th year and present myself to my fans. Q :. How do you think your style of music has changed over the years? May’n : For the May’n that you see now is as real to the real me as well as off stage. When I first started off, I was the singing voice of Sheryl Nome of Macross Frontier. That character is like very sexy and feminine, so I thought - ‘How can I bring out that character through my singing, how to fill in the gap between myself and the character, but now after meeting many other singers, I can feel comfortable singing as myself and present my true self to the fans out there. Q : What is the motivation that drive you to sing more anime songs? May’n : The No.1 reason that I get to meet many singers and overseas fans was through the Anisong concert, so now I want to work harder and present better songs to my overseas fans. The first time I got to perform overseas was 2008 and that was my 1st time away from Japan in my private life as well. I’ve also heard that the Japanese anime culture was really popular both in and outside of Japan and is getting more popular with each passing year and also because how the overseas fans have embraced the anime culture. Q : This year you have performed in many universities, are there any memorable moments May’n : Because it’s a school festival, even if people who have not heard of me before would be able to become excited because my performance will be up on stage next and that rise in excitement that actually leads me to be more confident to deliver my performance. The staff who was helping me are actually students of the campuses as well and on the sideline, they are listening to me practicing, I am happy that they can enjoy while they’re working. Q : Do you have a favorite character? May’n : For the Anime that I likes, it will definitely from all my own productions and I do watch them all in real time – Macross Frontier and Aquarion Logos. For me, personally, I like Idol Master – Cinderella Girls. The May’n that you all are seeing now was thanks to the chance I’ve got involve in so many productions in Anime as well as in social life and I want to like Anime even more and hoped that many more people would like Animes too. Q : . What do you like about Idol Master? May’n : In the Idol master – Cinderella girls, I felt that their life story was close to how my life felt and reflected the difficulties of a singer - like when I stand on stage, I felt really happy when fans supported me and that really touches me. Many times I get really excited when I stand on stage and there are times also when I shed some tears when I get troubled over how my performances turned out – so that's why I like the anime Idol Master - Cinderella girls. Q : What was the most memorable song you sung and when was it? May’n : My answer would probably not change from now on and will forever remained was "Diamond Crevasse" because at this point in time I’ve just changed my name to May’n and felt a lot of insecurities but it also means that I would have a new start. I had many opportunities to go on a world tour and participate in many events then like the AFA 2008. At the point where my fans sang together in Japanese with me was really touching and felt the love for the Anime as well as for my songs. This was something I would like to keep close to my heart and in my performances from now on. Q : For your birthday, your staff did something special for you, can you tell us a bit about it? May’n : It’s was more of a private affair with friends, when my friends finished their work and I went over to their house, they’ve made a taiyaki stand in the house. They knew that I loved taiyaki, and named the stand ‘Nakabayashi Taiyaki’. We had a lot of fun and I snapped photos and posted it online. That was all the time we have for this interview and we would like to thank May’n san for taking time to talk to us. Special Thanks goes to Lim Wee Ling, Joanne Tham of Asia PR Werkz Pte Ltd and Shawn Chin of Anime Festival Asia for arranging and assistance for the interview.