Tag Archives: Rose of Versailles

Riyoko Ikeda Performs at Versailles

I don’t usually post stories like this, but it was too cool to pass up.

As you know, Riyoko Ikeda is the creator of The Rose of Versailles, a manga which is set in the court of Versailles pre-French Revolution and has to be one of the most revered and classic shoujo manga of all time. Ikeda has been at the French mega-comic-con, Angoulême, as a guest of honor these past few days. And apparently singing ditties penned by Queen Marie Antoinette herself, while in full Rococo garb, at the Palace of Versailles itself.

Here’s a excerpt from the Mainichi Daily News article:

Wearing a costume like a woman in the palace at the peak of its flourishing days, Ikeda entertained the audience of some 80 invited guests with her songs, including a piece written by Queen Marie Antoinette, the wife of Louis XVI and a key character in the comic series, at a theater inside the palace.

“I can’t describe enough in words how joyful I am to perform on this stage,” said Ikeda, who studied singing after entering a music college in her 40s.

“I thought I was not brave enough to sing Marie Antoinette’s song in French in front of a French audience, ” she added, drawing laughter from the crowd.

How much cooler can you get than that? My inner history and manga fangirls are dying to have seen this incredible spectacle!

Thanks to Helen McCarthy for tweeting about this super-awesome story.

UPDATE: Here’s a video of Ikeda performing. Pro-tip- if it’s not working in Firefox or another browser, try Internet Explorer.

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What Manga Do You Want The Most?

Manga licensing is a tricky business. There are companies that won’t work with other companies, titles that are too expensive to reasonably bring over the U.S., mangaka who are wary about having their work brought to an English-speaking audience and many other things to consider before licensing a title for the finicky U.S. market. It’s especially hard to judge demand when there are so many people reading scanlations. Is this title popular enough despite all those people who’ve already read it for free? Will fans devote their money to a manga regardless? It’s hard to judge a risky market like manga publishing sometimes. The best that can be done sometimes is to listen to their demands, but that might not always be the easiest thing to do because of all the restrictions mentioned above.

But what if we pretended to wipe the slate clean and have our own publishing companies for a moment? You’re given the opportunity to license any two manga titles that you wanted to, regardless of price, publisher politics or the relative lack of demand for the titles you pick. What would you license?

Rose of Versailles? Sailor Moon? Jungle Emperor Leo? What are you dying to publish the most?

I’ve tried to give the subject matter a lot of thought. It’s really hard to pick just two titles because there’s probably two dozen on my mental shortlist. Do I really want this one over this other one? I’m not sure, because I’d probably buy either in an instant.

But I’ve decided. I would want to bring over Osamu Tezuka’s Nana-iro Inko (Rainbow Parakeet), which I’ve mentioned wanting before, and Saint Oniisan (Saint Young Men) by Hikaru Nakamura.

Had I a chance to bring over a third title, I would have probably picked Moto Hagio’s A Cruel God Reigns, but I think the above two titles would have to be my first two picks. Nana-iro Inko because it sounds like a fun, under-estimated Tezuka title and Saint Oniisan because I read it (when I felt less guilty about scanlations) and loved it so much. (I would buy for myself in an instant and recommend it to all my friends who have a good sense of humor about religion.) It would break my heart to never ever see either title in English, in my lifetime. (Whereas I just want to see more of Moto Hagio’s work and had a hard time picking between A Cruel God Reigns and Poe no Ichizoku.)

So I’ll ask again: If you could have any two titles published in your language, regardless of any extenuating circumstances, what would those two titles be?

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Anime Expo 2010: Days 3 & 4

Phew, I’m feeling a little bit better than yesterday, but more importantly, I have more time to write this post than I thought I did! Always a good thing!

Saturday:

Viz’s industry panel started off the morning by telling shonen fans everywhere that Shonen Jump‘s subscription price has dropped to $26.95 and, in case you are a Los Angeles anime fan, Stan Lee is having an Ultimo-only signing at the Grove Barnes & Noble on July 16th. (I think I’ll skip that one.)

New licenses included Mistress Fortune and Sakura Hime Kaden by Arina Tanemura, Oresama Teacher by Izumi Tsubaki and Ai Ore by Mayu Shinju.

Viz also announced the simulcast of Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan starting this week on their website. You can already watch the first episode.

The Production I.G. panel was switched from Sunday to Saturday, allowing Production I.G. a better time slot, albeit fewer attendees. They announced the license of Loups=Garous, Broken Blade and (mistakenly announced) that Nozomi Entertainment had the license to the Revolutionary Girl Utena movie.

I attended the live recording of the ANN Cast, which you can listen to here. I didn’t have any good questions to ask, but you can hear me yell at the guy gunning for Princess Knight anime and manga releases that he may have been confusing the popularity of the Tezuka manga with the international fame of Riyoko Ikeda’s The Rose of Versailles. Guy hadn’t even heard of Vertical Inc. and their spectacular Tezuka line-up. What a shame.

Then the day was over, I had bought too much manga, and wound up attending an industry party that was a lot of fun. But I did manage to snap some cute pictures of cosplayers from the first two series I edited: Zone-00 and Sgt Frog! (Here’s another one.) New volumes of both those manga are due out this month, in case you are interested in my work.

Sunday:

Sunday was much more laid back. No big industry panels, still lots of people in the dealer’s hall because it was a weekend and my last round of manga buying. I was rather sad that I left without From Eroica With Love volumes 12 and 13, which I had sworn I’d seen on sale somewhere the day before, but I managed to buy volumes 14 & 15 instead.

It was a fantastic con for me, although I kept hearing whispers of low dealer registration for next year’s con and grumbles from the dealers themselves. I wonder how future Anime Expos are going to turn out if dealers do not want to return, but I hope the SPJA can do something to bring them back before that even happens.

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