News: Aiba Masaki and Arimura Kasumi as 2016 Kouhaku MC

The 67th NHK Kouhaku Uta Gassen

Aiba and Arimura Kasumi will be the white and red teams Kouhaku MCs this year. This will be the 67th NHK Kouhaku Uta Gassen (NHK紅白歌合戦). The theme of this year’s event is “Yume o Utaou 夢を歌おう”, or Sing the Dream. Kouhaku is an annual music show by NHK held on New Year’s Eve. The event divides singers into red and white teams – red for the female singers, and white for the male singers. The viewers and audience will get to vote for their favourite team.

Performing on Kouhaku is by invitation only, and therefore it’s seen as a great achievement/highlight in the singer’s career.

Aiba Masaki debut in 1999 as a member of Arashi. He has since broadened this experiences by acting in dramas, movies, and hosting various variety shows, including hosting the NHK variety show that started in April this year, “Good! Sports”. He has performed in Kouhaku as a member of Arashi 7 times so far, starting from 2009. He has previously hosted in Kouhaku five times in a row as a member of Arashi, from 2010 to 2014. This marks the first time a single member of Arashi will host at Kouhaku.

Arimura Kasumi debut in 2010. She has starred in dramas such as Chicken Race (チキンレース) and Itsuka Kono Koi o Omoidashite Kitto Naite Shimau (いつかこの恋を思い出してきっと泣いてしまう, Love that Makes You Cry), and movies such as I Am a Hero (アイアムアヒーロー). At age 23, she is a promising actress who has won the Newcomer of the Year award in the 39th Japan Academy Prize, Best Actress award in the 58th Blue Ribbon Awards and the Newcomer of the Year award in the 2016 Élan d’Or Awards. This will be Arimura’s first time hosting at the event.

Arimura and Aiba have worked together before in the 2015 drama Yōkoso, Wagaya e (ようこそ、わが家へ), in which Aiba played the lead role. She also appeared as a guest in two episodes (episode 8 and 9) of Aiba’s drama Mikeneko Homes no Suiri (三毛猫ホームズの推理).

Besides Aiba, Arimura has also worked with Matsumoto Jun of Arashi during his lead drama Shitsuren Chocolatier (失恋ショコラティエ), and on the movie Narratage, to be released in 2017.

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