Cheeky Parade interviews celebrities! Vol.2 PUFFY edition

The 9 girl idol group, Cheeky Parade will hold the last show of their Japan tour in New York in October. 
Chikipa is going overseas to hold the final show of their tour in New York. Before they took such an unprecedented step as an idol group, an interview project was launched, “Before the NY show, let’s learn the secret of overseas expansion from people who work all over the world!!! Cheeky Parade, learn about Japanese culture!”
The members of Cheeky Parade then became journalists and interviewed celebrities who play an active role globally in their own field while representing Japan.

★ ★ ★

Cheeky Parade leader Sekine together with Yurina and Marina Suzuki went to interview PUFFY who are pioneers of Japanese pop and icons. PUFFY held a US tour in 2002 and an animation show modeled on PUFFY was produced and aired in the US.


Sekine: We Cheeky Parade will be holding a live show in New York in October. We started this project in order to talk with people who play an active role globally! Today, we would like to interview Yumi and Ami of PUFFY who are Japanese pop icons and ask about when you advanced overseas! Nice to meet you. Thank you for your time. 

Yumi and Ami: Nice to meet you too. Thank you for having me.

Sekine: When you went to the US for the tour in 2002, did you notice any difference between Japan and the US and were you aware of anything in particular? 

Ami: I was thinking to do the same as I did in Japan. When I talk during the show, I didn’t try hard to speak in English. I wrote down what I wanted to say on cue cards and read them or communicated with the audience with gestures.
Yumi: [You] Don’t need to try to speak perfect English. Like when Japanese and American mixed kids speak broken Japanese it sounds cute. You know? Lol.

Chikipa members: That’s true! Lol.

Yumi: Chikipa you girls are performing at Comic-con too right? Envy! I wanna go to NY with you guys!

Mariya: Please come with us!!

Ami: I wanna go! There are many local people at Comic-con, but many of them are Japanese animation fans so you can actually communicate with them in Japanese too!

Chikipa members: Really? That sounds exciting!!!

Sekine: We are holding the final day of the tour in New York. Can you give us any advice how to pump up the stage?

Ami: Say, “Are you having a good time?” or “Put your hands up!” with gestures. That would work!!
Yumi: The local people get pumped up right away for you.

Sekine: I see! Was there anything you worried about during the US tour?

Ami: I was worried that only 19 pre-order tickets were sold. Lol 

Chikipa members: What???

Ami: Supposedly, people don’t really buy pre-order tickets in the US.
Yumi: We were saying that we are lucky enough to hold a live show in the US! So, let’s do our best for 19 people! Lol. 
Ami: But many people came the day of the show and it was packed.

Sekine: That’s amazing…  What is it that foreign people like about Japan?

Ami: People overseas think that Japan itself is cool to begin with - more than we think.
Yumi: That’s right. Also, key points are words like “Tokyo” and “Kawaii.”

Yuriya: How did you feel when HI HI Puffy AmiYumi was made and broadcasted in the US?

Ami: We’ve thought it was a lie for a long time. Lol
Yumi: Because, the producer of the show happened to hear our song and remembered our name Puffy and Sony on the radio. When we had a live show close to where he lives, he came and after that, the project moved ahead rapidly.
Ami: What a country! Lol.

Sekine: That is incredible! Both of you are always so laid back and seem to be comfortable with yourselves. What is the secret to being loved by fans for such a long time?

Yumi: I think that is because we are very close. We understand each other and never fight. 
Ami: Yeah. We’ve been saying that we’ll quit whenever we get bored. But we haven’t gotten bored yet.

Sekine: I see! That is awesome! We heard that you are going to hold the tour, PUFFY TOUR 2014“SWAG,SWAG,SWAG,” for the first time in 3 years.

Yumi: Oh yeah. We had a tour meeting today, too. It’s not an album tour but we have so many old songs that it has made it difficult to pick the songs to perform. We hope this tour will be something to surprise the fans!
Ami: But, we haven’t made many decisions yet! Lol
Yumi: It’s been 3 years, so we want to put our hearts into this tour.

Sekine: Can’t wait to see your show! Lastly, what does a live show mean for both of you?

Yumi: Sometimes, I get so nervous and wanna runaway, but at the same time, it’s so much fun! Lol I record songs so I wanna sing them for people who support us. But more than anything, I love it! Because it’s so much fun!
Ami: A live concert is the final goal of our activities like recordings and promotions and so on. I work hard to perform at the live shows!

Mariya: Well.. Can you guys become members of Chikipa?

Ami: OK! But depends on our place in the group.

Mariya: We’ll provide the center position for you!

Ami: Oh not that. The actual standing positions? The two of us can be standing on the sides like bodyguards. That would be fine. Lol 


PUFFY Profile
Ami Oonuki
Yumi Yoshimura

They debuted in 1996 as PUFFY with the single “Asia no Junshn,” produced by Tamio Okuda. After that, their singles “Kore ga Watashi no Ikiru Michi,” “Circuit no Musume” and “Nagisa ni Matsuwaru Et Cetera” became big hits. 
The animation show “HI HI Puffy YumiAmi” was broadcast to more than 110 countries all over the world on Cartoon Network, No.1 animation channel in the US.
They are active around the world as Japanese pop icons.
They will holding the tour, “PUFFY TOUR 2014“SWAG,SWAG,SWAG,” for the first time in 3 years, starting October in 6 venues nationwide.