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First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/17 00:04
I'm going to be traveling around Japan with my boyfriend in December, and recently found out that my favorite visual kei band will be performing in Kyoto at the same time we'll be there.

I've already read tons of forums and posts about the process of going to live shows, concert etiquette etc., but there are still a few things I'm a little unsure about.

My boyfriend (who is Japanese) was able to buy my ticket (he doesn't like visual kei, so I'll be going alone), and is having it sent to his parents' place, but we had to look on a couple different websites to find a ticket, since some websites were sold out.
My boyfriend later told me that people are let into the venue according to the number on the ticket.

Even though tickets were sold out on some sites, is there still a chance of mine having a relatively low number?

Will my number be better than if I had waited until the day of the concert to buy it at the venue?

Also, I've read different opinions on moving up to the front. Is it considered really rude? I would never push or shove people, but I'm not sure when I'll have this opportunity again, so I'm pretty determined to get to the front.

Thanks in advance for any replies!
by Nikki319 (guest)  

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/17 10:16
first, congrats on seeing your favourite band live! I know how it feels. :)

Usually tickets are issued two or three weeks before the show and 整理番号 (entrance order numbers) are assigned randomly, so you have chances it will be a low number, but it also might not be.

If the tickets are sold out likely there would be no same-day tickets so you did the right thing in getting a resale ticket.

and

Also, I've read different opinions on moving up to the front. Is it considered really rude? I would never push or shove people, but I'm not sure when I'll have this opportunity again, so I'm pretty determined to get to the front.
I do understand how you feel. I really do. But entrance order numbers are there for a reason. You can still relatively move around and find a good spot when you get in but pushing the people in front of you to get to the front will be INCREDIBLY rude. And vk fans are known to speak up against this sort of behaviour from first-timers or (what they assume to be) light/casual fans so I really urge you to not do it.

I'm sure you'll enjoy the show! have fun and thumbs up for looking up etiquette before going - so many foreign fans don't and just assume concerts are the same in their home country, which makes people roll eyes at best and get them kicked out at worst...
by krr (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/17 23:15
I think it's the same in any country at any concert that it is considered rude to move upfront. I mean, hey, everyone wants to go upfront, right?

The smartest thing to do (regardless of the band being domestic or foreign) is to ask fans (such as through fan sites) before hand to see what spot is best for that specific tour and venue.

Once you get in, go straight to that spot. Most people just tend to head for the middle and end up at the back, but sometimes it's wiser to head for the edge or near the crew area or an isle, while others focus on different spots.

And once you decide your spot, smile or try to chat with the people around you. People tend to be nicer to friends than to strangers ;)
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/18 16:59
In my country (Southern Europe) pushing and shoving people to get to the front is acceptable. It's a battlefield. No one likes it but no one wants to lose, and everyone thinks they're smarter than the people next to them (or just do not think of the inconvenience they might give). Don't even get me started on how they'll all hold their smartphone on top of their heads to take photos/videos of the stage without a care that the person behind them might not see the stage at all.
I hate that... and it's one of the reasons why I enjoy shows in Japan so much, instead!
by krr (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/19 12:23
Some venues have really weird policies on who they let in first. Some of them go simply by ticket number, but others let people in according to which company or place they bought their ticket at. Certain venues give certain companies priority, so if you got your ticket from a company or convenience store that the venue favours (eg: Lawson or Family Mart), you are likely to be let in before others, who bought their ticket at 7-11 for example, even if the number on your ticket is high. I don't know how common this is though - it only happened to me once at a small venue in Tokyo.

As for pushing, I'm pretty adamant about always wanting to be at the front at live shows, and even when I've been let into a gig late there has always been space left at the front. Japanese people tend to hang around near the chairs / bar / merch desk until it's time for the main act to take the stage, which is when everyone suddenly crowds around the front, so I wouldn't worry so much about not getting a good spot early in the night. I've never been to a big arena show though for a very famous band though, which is probably different. Good luck.
by Jenn Jett (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/19 14:15
@ Jenn Jett
big arena shows usually have seats and you have your numbered seats you cannot move from, so whatever seat you get you're doomed to it, ahah.
By the way I've been to dozens of concerts in standing only venues and it has hardly ever been like you said, with the front rows filling up very quickly right after door opening, with people who try to push their way to the front being side eyed at best and told off at worst.
I'm sure it depends on the genre and the audience though. Incidentally I have never been to vk shows (except 対バン with other type bands) but everyone I know tells me the fandom is very intense and dedicated so I would expect the fans to stand in front since the very beginning, but again I do not have direct experience in this specific genre.
by krr (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/19 22:44
Japanese people tend to hang around near the chairs / bar / merch desk until it's time for the main act to take the stage, which is when everyone suddenly crowds around the front

That happens when there is indeed a main act and a supporting act. You can even trade places between fans of the main act and supporting act.

But when it's a show case for just one band or when the main act is super big, there will be enough people at the very beginning to fill the front rows.
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/20 06:29
Thanks for the replies, everyone!

The group that I'm going to see (SuG) is pretty popular, I believe, but I have no idea what the fan base is like in Japan. The venue is MOJO in Kyoto. I read somewhere that the capacity is around 300 people, so I'm guessing it's a pretty small place, and I'm sure I'll be able to enjoy myself from wherever I'm standing :)

I'm making plans to study in Tokyo next semester, so I'm hoping to get a better feel for concert culture/etiquette in Japan, and that this will be the first of many live house concerts :)
by Nikki319 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: First time going to a Japanese live show 2016/10/20 08:59
You probably already know, but this is the website for Mojo where you can see photos of the floor.
http://kyoto-mojo.com/subwin.html

I found a SuG fansite too.
http://39.xmbs.jp/39/?guid=on

Have your boyfriend help you read マナー講座 where everything about fan manners are written, especially the ライヴ中 section.

There's also a 質問掲示板 where you can register to post questions there. Maybe you can ask what part of the venues the crowd tend to gather on this tour.

At such a small venue with no supporting act, which seems to be how it is for this Budokan-level band, I think the crowd will most likely gather at the middle as well as near the most popular members. I don't know how it is with this band, but often the "unpopular" side of the floor gets more attraction from the players.
by Uco rate this post as useful

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