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Tuesday, 29 December 2009

[Translation] ViVi Magazine February 2010 Issue Translation

ViVi Magazine February 2010 Issue Full Translation

double one

A letter to XX

After this point, I’ll go on forever---. I could fulfil this 11th year with such a conviction.
Because I performed from spring to autumn, I was together with my fans,
staff, dancers and band members all the time.
Sharing a time that comes only once and an atmosphere that can only be born there,
we could transmit the things we felt to each other.
Higher nor lower than anyone else, while focusing on the same goal
at the same eye level. Looking downward together, looking upward together;
I feel I could walk together with everyone.
And when I could sing in my own way, I was wrapped in extraordinary happiness.
Thank you. I will keep singing after this. Always. Always ---.

Conveying what I feel to strangers is quite scary to be honest. In the past, I was very poor at doing so. I don’t really know if I truly had the will to convey them....(bitter smile). Lately, it has become important not to speak. Not talking about my feelings has turned out better. Because all the more misunderstandings arise if I try to explain them. I believe that the fact that everyone can clearly feel the atmosphere of that space is a relationship of great mutual trust.

I was crying the entire time I watched the film. I couldn’t sit down, because I felt like if I was standing on the stage in front of my eyes.... I don’t remember it clearly, but I think...I might...have...danced (laughs).

3. PAIN*
About this time last year, I unfortunately injured my hand... Because there would be a live performance soon, I had to alter my steps and clothes. External damage heals when time passes, but you have to overcome the damage of your heart by yourself, right? Still, I could overcome a great amount of things at the end of that year. That’s because I could become aware of various obvious things.

The stage is not completed until the guests have arrived. The completed form of the stage isn’t visible in the beginning, but due to the entrance of the guests it becomes something visible. That’s why, I always sing for the sake of the people who came that day. Because there are 40 performances doesn’t mean that one performances in 1/40. It’s always 1/1. That’s because every time, every time is different.

Because I can directly convey the things I feel during a performance, at that day, in that moment, it’s an especially important thing to me. At the 09’s MC corner I planned to show some original parts (laughs).

During the tour I only thought about my voice, even when I was sleeping. In the past, the way I spent my time when I wasn’t performing was rash (bitter smile). But after I became conscious of the fact that I was a singer, I became more self-controlled. I’m firmly controlling my physical condition. Do I want to act without restraint? Absolutely not! That’s because such momentary pleasures are tiny in comparison with the happiness of being able to sing the way I want to.

It has become standard to release a ballad in the winter, but why? ....Still, I want to sing it, don’t I? A lonely song when it gets cold (laughs). At the selection point, there were various genres of songs. But this time I unexpectedly chose two ballads. The lyrics don’t have the feeling of a romantic love, but of a wider concept of love.

This was the first time I sang all the songs of an album live. It was a bit of a challenge. Especially considering this year’s tour was long, I think it was hard for everyone to find their own motivation. That’s because a tour affects not only oneself, but a lot of people. If one person loses his or her motivation everything gets disordered, but this time everyone’s awareness was maintained.

When I create a stage, I always think about whether the me standing on stage, the band members, the dancers and the staff can walk together with the same goal and the same point of view. Higher nor lower than anyone else. Looking downward together, looking upward together. I treasure those things the most. If I have a dream, I wonder if this is it.

10. TEAM
Because it was a long tour, the staff, dancers, band members and I were always together; up to the point it was a little irritating (laughs). Because we only slept in separate places, it seemed we were constantly together once we’d woken up. It was a year where our bonds grew stronger.  

While smiling happily, Ayu explained the details how a song is born and gets transmitted to the listeners.

Winter has arrived once again. In this season at the end of the year, coloured by Ayu’s ballads, the double A single [You were... / BALLAD] will be released. Ayu chose the songs from a large choice of songs and wrote the lyrics to them. This year both songs are ballads.

“There are days when I want to sing and days when I don’t want to sing. If I try to record while feeling something like: “today is wrong somehow,” then I will start thinking, “I hate this song” (laughs). It seems they sort of sound each other out.... It takes time to make a song my own.”

Regarding the lyrics she comments she wrote them with a broader view of love than just romantic love in mind. Although “You were...” has the lines ‘I wanted my last love to be with you’, the true message of that line is: rather than the sad feeling of losing love, the feelings of loving someone are strong. Even if she tries to look back on her activities of this year, what Ayu tries to transmit are her deep, deep feelings towards her songs, her surrounding staff and large amount of fans.

“I keep strict reign over my physical condition. During a live performance I might get excited and yell too loudly (laughs), but I usually think about my voice all day long. In the past, the way I spent my time when I wasn’t performing was rash (bitter smile). But after I became conscious of the fact that I was a singer, I became more self-controlled. Even with things like my birthday. Because it was in the middle of the tour, I told my staff in advance, “It’s alright not to do anything for my birthday”..... Because if I were to have celebrated it, I would have definitely talked too much out of happiness and that would have been bad for my voice. Other than that, because I want to sing my best on stage, it’s kind of like “please let me be silent” (laughs).”

When asked, “Don’t you want cut loose once in a while?” she clearly answered, “Momentary pleasures are tiny in comparison with the happiness of being able to sing the way I want to”. That’s why Ayu’s everyday life is always for to the sake of singing and for the sake of the listening audience.

It was a year with live performances in the centre. Included with a-nation, her country wide tour recorded the most amount of people since her debut. That however definitely doesn’t mean this year had a favourable start.

“At the end of the year 2008 I suffered an injury and I have unexpectedly learned things from that time. Because of the injury I had to completely alter my steps and clothes. It was tough. But hey, in the instant you bump your toe while you’re walking, you think, “This is the most painful thing I’ve ever felt” don’t you? Even though there have been plenty of more painful times.... But, the one who has to overcome pain is the heart, right? To me, overcoming the future and being able to greet the New Year were great things. This may sound weird but, well, I’m glad I suffered an injury during the busiest time of the year. Because I could come to realize several obvious things.”

Progress? Deepening? It is certain that Ayu has steadily been changing while she doing such things. Holding a stronger, purer and bigger love and moving to even greater heights----.

“My ambitions for the future...? I thought I would be asked about them. But, I definitely won’t talk about my ambitions (laughs). Simply, I think it’s nice to look forward to the future because it holds things that I haven’t done so far.”  

*’This Is It’ is the name of a Michael Jackson tribute movie.
*Ayu injured her hand severely in 2008 just before the Countdown Live. She performed nonetheless.

Credit: tenshi no hane @ AHS
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