Japan’s number one pop idol group, AKB48, returns to the Philippines to perform in the 60 Years of Philippines-Japan Friendship Celebration on Sunday, December 4, 2016 at the Market! Market! Activity Center in Taguig City.
The twelve of over 100 AKB48 members who are set to join the weekend’s festivities are Rena Fukuchi, Yurina Gyoten, Riona Hamamatsu, Kotone Hitomi, Serika Nagano, Rin Okabe, Nanami Sato, Maria Shimizu, Karin Shimoaoki, Ayane Takahashi, Hijiri Tanikawa, and Nanase Yoshikawa. All coming from AKB48 Team 8, the arriving girls are composed of returning visitors and first-time guests. Several Team 8 members have been to Manila in 2015 to participate in last year’s Cool Japan Festival.
AKB48 will perform some of their hits as part of the Japanese pop culture presentations that the Embassy of Japan in the Philippines has arranged to mark the six decades of strong Philippines-Japan ties. Fellow Japanese pop group, Starmarie, is also featured alongside the phenomenal idol franchise to entertain the 60 Years celebration attendees.
Since its inception in 2005, AKB48 has been making history in and out of Japan for its groundbreaking “idols you can meet” concept and immense success in the music industry. The group has broken several records for its sheer size and for the number of chart-topping and best-selling songs that it has released.
The pop idols’ popularity spans the world over, with a devoted fan base that is mostly concentrated in Asia, due to the “sister groups” that have been forming and are patterned after the original AKB48 system. The group started branching out in Japan to create counterparts outside its Akihabara origin. It eventually introduced JKT48, the first foreign sister group that debuted in Indonesia in 2011. Following the positive reception for JKT48, three other foreign sister groups were announced earlier this year, which will based in Thailand, Taiwan, and the Philippines.