Last December 4 2016 celebrated the 60th year anniversary of the Japan-Philippines friendship with a special treat to fans as AKB48’s Team 8, one of their honored guest performer lit the stage on fire with their heart pounding performances of classic and new favorites.
Here is their individual introductions
JEFusion was privileged to be graced by their presence in a press conference before the grand event. Below are the questions and answers of each Team 8 member (NOTE: answers based on interpreter's translation)
1. Please tell us your impression on the Philippines upon coming here. For those who came here last year, what are the differences between this year’s visits from the previous?Hamamatsu Riona: “First of all I’m so happy to be back in the Philippines, thank you so much for welcoming us and this is our second time performing in the Philippines. What was different from last year is that we have a fan base and I had so much fun meeting with all of the fans, they’re so awesome. All the Filipino fans are so nice; we had such a fun time. So I hope that we can have this kind of fan meeting next year.”2. Can you tell us the similarities between Filipinos and Japanese? And then, what are their differences?Hitomi Kotone : “Both Filipinos and Japanese are very kind and friendly. The difference is Japanese are very shy”3. This year marks the 60th year of Japan-Philippines friendship. What do you think is the secret of their long-lasting friendship?Okabe Rin: “Caring for each other is the secret to the friendship”4. Do you have a Filipino friend? Also, what kind of Filipino do you want to be friends with?Gyouten Yurina: “I don’t have a pure Filipino friend, but I have a friend that is half Japanese and half Filipino that is kind. I want to have a pure Filipino friend who is also kind”5. Where do you want to go in the Philippines? What sort of things would you like to do here?Satou Nanami: “We went to visit some churches here in the Philippines and while visiting them we saw some beaches and want to visit the beaches of the Philippines and have fun with my friends”6. What things about the Philippines would you like to know?Takahashi Ayane: “In Japan during Christmas season it’s snowing and my image of Santa Claus is with reindeer and snow. I want to know since it’s not snowing in the Philippines, what is the image of Santa Claus in the Philippines”7. Do you know some information about the Philippines? Could you tell us about it?Shimizu Maria: “In Japan supermarkets there are also banana and I know banana is a very popular fruit in the Philippines, but when I went to the local supermarket I was shocked there are many different kinds of bananas in the Philippines”8. Are you interested in Philippine showbiz? If so, what part of Philippine showbiz are you interested in?Fukuchi Rena: “This is my second time in the Philippines and during those two times we have been in the local TV show Showtime and I noticed that Filipinos like dancing and very good at dancing. I want to learn and enjoy dancing”9. Have you tried Filipino food? Which dish or deserts had a lasting impression?Yoshikawa Nanase: “When I was little I went to the Philippines and tasted the Halo-Halo desert and now that I’m back I want to taste Halo-Halo again”10. Tell us your impression on your Filipino fansTanikawa Hijiri: “Yesterday we had a fan meet and my impression of Filipino fans are powerful; I’m excited to meet the fans again in the performance later”11. MNL48 Start has been announced. Can you say some messages to hopeful young girls who want to join MNL48Shimoaoki Karin: “My message is believe in themselves, character is also important and keep on believing”12. Please say a word or two to your beloved Filipino fans.Nagano Serika: “This is my first time in the Philippines and I love the culture and the fans. They are very kind and powerful, please keep in touch with us we are very thankful to everyone visiting our performance”.
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