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Hatsune Miku Expo
July 12 at 6:30 pm - 11:00 pm
This Japanese singer is so popular, she can play one of DC’s biggest venues (theanthemdc.com; $50 to $155)—but she doesn’t actually exist. Here’s the deal with the mega-successful digital performer.
A digital pop star? What’s that?
Created by the Japanese company Crypton Future Media ten years ago, Miku is essentially audio software that lets songwriters enter melodies and lyrics, then turns them into a recording voiced by actress Saki Fujita. Over time, the Miku character blew up into an internet phenomenon.
Weird. How big of a phenomenon?
The Miku wiki page, which tracks the most popular com-positions, lists more than 1,400 tracks. But Crypton global-marketing manager Guillaume Devigne says tens of thousands of songs have been released by fans around the world.
She’s just a voice, though. How can Miku perform live?
Anime artist Kei Garou created a teal-haired schoolgirl character to go with the voice. On tour, she’s brought to life as a hologram and backed by a live band. The songs are selected from user-generated tracks posted online. Want to hear your Miku tune performed by the actual (virtual) singer onstage? Better get to work.