America’s Japanese Pop Idol

By seth
May 2, 2010 Updated: October 1, 2015
Japanese singer Reni Mimura has attracted a loyal fan-base for her unique style. (Kotaro Ohashi / Aspire Communications, Inc. )
Japanese singer Reni Mimura has attracted a loyal fan-base for her unique style. (Kotaro Ohashi / Aspire Communications, Inc. )

Japanese pop star Reni Mimura made a life changing decision two years ago—to come to America to promote her unique performing style. “My performance includes many different elements, but it is mainly based on the word Moe,” she said in an exclusive interview with The Epoch Times.

Moe is a common word among Japanese youth which is normally used to describe people with the quality to be exceedingly cute and innocent.

Reni's visual performance style is a branch of contemporary Japanese musical performance mixing the elements of Moe and “cosplay”—a word which comes from the union of the words costume, and role-play. It refers to the phenomena of dressing up as a famous japanese animation or video game character and then acting the part. It has become a very popular hobby among japanese animation fans.

When asked why she included “cosplay” in her performances, something fresh in American music, she humorously replied “Cosplay is my life!” and explained “while doing cosplay, people can easily change their personality, and in so doing, they can make many friends…what I wanted since the beginning is for people to come to my show, become friends, socialize, and meet new people while being physically in the same place.”

Having barely begun performing in America, since February 2009, Reni has quickly gained wide attention, and has been invited to perform in the most prominent Japanese animation conventions in the country. Recently, the National Broadcasting Television Station of Japan (NHK) —made a documentary on Reni's career in America and the impact of her performances on western audiences.

When asked what she thought about her sudden and quick rise in popularity in America, she poetically replied “I cannot shine by myself, so I hope to be able to shine through all of you, and that way we will all shine together.”

Reni has a monthly show at the Top Tunes bar in New York, which has recently expanded and began including performances from Japanese-style bands created by her fans. The monthly show represents a refreshing moment for coming together, sharing among friends and relaxing. “Nowadays there is so much pressure and everybody is competing. There is not much fantasy in this world. Deep inside, everybody is seeking this Moe feeling, that is, a feeling of satisfaction, mutual healing and support. In my world, it doesn’t make any difference whether someone is number one or number 1,000. We all have fun together,” she said.

Reni has already begun touching peoples lives after just one year of performing. While talking about her fans, in very a pleased and excited mood, she said “I have seen many of my fans who used to be very timid, change all of a sudden. They have become more open-minded, carefree, and confident. As a performer, I can see these changes they have undergone, and I'm very happy!”

Reni hopes to continue on with her unique performance style entertaining “cosplay” lovers and mass audiences alike, and gathering fans all across America and beyond.

If you would like to know more about Reni Mimura and her Moe performances, you can visit her webpage: wwwrenireni.com. Her latest CD called Sakura, her recently released photo-book Maid in New York and all her upcoming concert dates can be found there as well.