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NHK New Years Eve live from Okinawa City!

Date Posted: 2004-12-30

A local band is performing live in Okinawa City New Year’s Eve, and the Japanese national television network NHK is broadcasting it live.

The six-member band calling itself Orange Range broke into the top music spots last summer, and raced to the top of the radio and television music charts. The Okinawa City band thinks the coming exposure will be a big plus not only for them, but for Okinawa as well.

Okinawa’s a hot place for professionals of all sorts — radio, television, singers, models, actors and actresses — looking for attention. Promotion companies are flocking to the island to find new stars. Promoters say Okinawans are the most beautiful people in Japan.

Okinawan faces have a difference shape, and eyes are more European looking, one promoter says. Nobody’s ever been able to fully trace Okinawa’s roots, but that’s not deterring promoters and talent scouts. The target now is Orange Range.

NHK’s traditional New Year’s Eve show “Kouhaku Singing Contest” is all set for Okinawa. The Okinawa end of the broadcast takes place at the end of Gate 2 Street, near Kadena Air Base. Police will close Gate 2 Street to all vehicle traffic starting at 3 p.m. on December 31. A special stage will then be set up.

Besides within Japan, the NHK broadcast is being televised live to the United States and Hawaii, and to Asian countries. The event comes during Okinawa City’s upcoming 30th anniversary, and NHK’s named the event “the 2004 Finale… Live in Koza.” It marks the 30 years of local municipal government.

Orange Range wanted their performance in front of hometown fans. The six were born and raised in Okinawa City. Gate 2 Street area leader Yoshio Kuba says “It’s a great chance for PR for Okinawa City. We’re going to be seen nationwide, and are very thankful to the Orange Range group. They are our dream, and they make our dreams come true.”

The concert begins at 7:20 p.m., and is open to the general public.

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