At last it was Morning Musume concert day! Even though Dae and I already had our tickets to reserve our row, I still wanted to get there early to try for a good seat in the row (and also because I was so excited that I just wanted to be there waiting). So we showed up to the familiar line-up in the sun for about an hour, talked with several fans we had met on previous days, and watched all of the glowstick trading going on. (Glowsticks are a tradition at Morning Musume concerts, and the color of the glowstick signifies which member you're cheering for. I asked Dae to take me to Party City the night before to buy pink glowsticks for Sayumi!) We were all talking about the autograph situation yesterday, and Dae had decided not to suffer through a long line again (since he was only there to support me, after all), so he mentioned he had a priority ticket that he wasn't going to use. Immediately people started bidding (up to $40, even though the ticket was only a chance at an autograph), but Dae ended up giving it to a young guy who was in the Army, who used his two-week leave just to come see Morning Musume!
Soon they let us in for seating, and we ended up only a couple seats from the end of the row (it really didn't matter at all, since the whole row was a great view). It was still two hours until concert time, but we had fun watching everyone get their glowsticks going and chatting with this guy from Seattle who knew all the dances to Morning Musume's songs (he played them on his phone, and both of us sang along while he performed the moves). The time passed really quickly!
Finally the lights went out and the crowd went nuts (on their feet for the entire concert, naturally)! I was excited that they began with a special introduction video on the big screens (just like I've seen in all of their Japanese concerts), and then the girls took the stage. They started the show with Mikan, which has the lyric "Life is one time" and the message about living life to the fullest - that was all it took to start my eyes tearing up, since seeing this concert was something I never thought I'd be able to do, and I felt so happy that I was actually there making a dream come true! They did lots of recent songs, some cute introductions, one fast costume change, and an incredible medley of the past 12 years of Morning Musume hits. I sang along with every song, screamed my head off, and kept my arm in the air waving glowsticks the whole time! There's no way to know for sure, but I think one of Sayumi's waves was directed at me!
After a solid hour of music, they had to announce the winners of the Morning Musume video contest (which had been going on for a few weeks), so as an added bonus I got to see former Momusu leader Hitomi Yoshizawa and Tsunku, the creator/producer of Morning Musume, on stage! Truthfully, the announcements went a little long and kind of brought down the energy of the concert, but it was still great to see more Jpop personalities. Thankfully, Momusu did a quick reprise at the end, but unfortunately there was no encore (definitely due to Anime Expo time constraints). Even though the concert didn't have the huge sets and lights like the arenas they play in Japan, it was still an incredible show! The girls' energy was at 150% the whole time, and I thought their singing was excellent (usually when I watch a concert DVD there is at least one moment when I realize someone has missed a note, but I didn't notice a single mistake this time)!
After the show, Dae and I went for a beer, and a few fans that had been sitting behind us complimented me on knowing all the lyrics, which was cool. Then we headed to Little Tokyo for some great sushi, sashimi and plenty of sake, ending a totally fantastic day! I went to sleep anxious about the possible autographs the next day, which I'll write about tomorrow.