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JOHNNY'S ISLAND: THE NEW WORLD Comes to Tokyo Imperial Theatre

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Performances run through January 26.

JOHNNY'S ISLAND: THE NEW WORLD Comes to Tokyo Imperial Theatre

Johnny's Island: The New World comes to Tokyo Imperial Theatre this month. Performances run through January 26.

Johnny's Island: The New World is the 11th incarnation of a long-running series first launched as "Johnny's World" back in 2012. It is a Broadway/Vegas-style entertainment showcase of theatre, dance, music, and acrobatic spectacle, with each show's cast made up of the hottest rising young stars of Japan's biggest talent agency Johnny & Associates.

While the specific performances are tailored each year to the specialties of participating artists, the show's holding device is always as it was first developed by its original producer: agency founder Johnny H. Kitagawa (1931~2019). In the story, an on-set accident interrupts the opening number, leading the players on a fantastic journey through time and space to locate a fabled "13th month" wherein lies the essence of showbusiness and what it means to be a star. Woven into the narrative are original music and dance performances, covers of historic hits by senior Johnny & Associates artists from the 1960s onwards, and death-defying stunts of trapeze, trampoline, aerial ribbon acrobatics, and more.

The show was the subject of the 2013 NHK World documentary "Johnny's World: Top of the J-pops," and since 2016 has always closed with the original number "Let's Go to Tokyo" written by the legendary Charles Strouse; a personal friend of the late Kitagawa.

The show is an original production by Johnny & Associates, produced in partnership with TOHO Co., Ltd (as in, the Godzilla company)

This year, the show is packed with 68 rising stars, all from Johnny's in-house trainee program known as the "Johnnys' Juniors." While these groups are not yet officially debuted into the Japanese pop mainstream, the top individuals among them comprise groups who enjoy an enviable amount of fame and stardom with full-on solo concerts, lines of merchandise, commercial sponsorships, and starring roles across box-office hit films and Japanese broadcast television.


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