As news has come out that shoujo series Shugo Chara! will soon be receiving an adaptation as a stage musical, it might be a good time to review past musicals based on popular anime: the Inuyasha musical and (of course) the Sailor Moon SeraMyu…
The famous Sailor Moon series of musicals (also known as セラミュー / SeraMyu) ran from 1993 to 2005, with 4 different actresses playing the lead role of Usagi and several “graduations” of the main cast as the performers aged over the long production run.
The musicals far outlived the TV series and manga (which both ended in 1997), and became something of an icon in themselves, spawning many CD albums and VHS/DVD video releases.
The musical mostly dealt with stories adapted from the manga and TV series, but also included some original storylines.
The general tone of the stories presented in the musicals will be no surprise to those who followed the classic shoujo series in the 90s (as did I – my first PVC figure was one of Minako / Sailor Venus).
Transformation sequences were mostly dealt with off stage, but battles had to be done with a variety of on-stage special effects and pyrotechnics. I will leave you to ponder what such a thing looked liked, as I have had trouble in acquiring any decent photos of said displays…
The Inuyasha musical was staged in 2001 by Shinkansen Parcomics, covering key parts of the manga up to tankoubon #6 (up to around episode 20 in the TV series).
The production included series highlights such as Kagome’s trip through time into feudal Japan, the battle with Yura, and Kikyo’s resurrection.
The musical was a limited-time affair, ending in less than a year with the introduction of the monk Miroku (meaning Sango was not among the cast).
As for the Shugo Chara! musical, it was announced by way of an advertisement for an audition in the March issue of De☆View, a show business rag.
The audition ad seeks females aged 10 – 18, and is reproduced on the De☆View website.
Plans seems set to start sometime later this year, although no definite times have been announced, nor have any details of the intended storyline. The location of the musical is known however – the Ginza Hakuninkan theatre.
More details on the Shugo Chara! musical are available at the De☆View news page.