A special virtual J-pop festival called SING for ONE -Special Live Night- took place Sunday (May 31) on YouTube, with 13 popular acts contributing some of their best past performances for an evening of music shared by viewers staying at home to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

The artists were asked to select two songs for the project, a signature piece plus the number they currently wanted the audience to hear the most. Of the 26 live performances, many had been previously unreleased on YouTube.

The concert featured Hikaru Utada kicking off the approximately two-and-a-half hour stream, and veteran singer-songwriter Kazumasa Oda wrapping it up, with other acts including Ikimonogakari, Uru, Toshinobu Kubota, CHEMISTRY, Gospellers, JUJU, Masayuki Suzuki, TUBE, Mika Nakashima, Ken Hirai and Misato Watanabe sharing some memorable past performances. Watch here:

The program was hosted by popular actress Ryoko Hirosue, who opened with heartfelt words of sympathy and understanding for everyone trying to make the best of these uncertain times, and gratitude to medical workers on the front lines of the pandemic. She explained that the title of the program, SING for ONE, meant that music exists alongside each one of us, and that she looked forward to enjoying the virtual concert together with viewers.

Around 48,000 fans checked in to watch the program in real time — a number that equals the capacity of Tokyo Dome — with reactions and comments flooding social media during the stream.

The SING for ONE -Special Live Night- concert will stay online until June 30.

News