Mari said a few words at the opening ceremony. She had two concerts, on Saturday and Sunday,
with autograph sessions each day. She had a panel on Saturday, and she was on the
"Intro to Anime for Parents" panel later that day. She was also at the closing ceremony.
Mari was introduced at the opening ceremony, and told a story about how she had
autographed one of her T-shirts for the convention chairman at
The guest reception was held Friday night. Tickets were sold earlier during the day, and only 100 tickets were
available. Mari was there, and spent about two hours chatting with her fans. Some of the fans came from far
away--one was from Peru!
The big news is that Mari has announced several upcoming projects. The most important is her
seventeenth original album, Right Now, which will be out in July. The album will have
ten songs, five in English and five in Japanese. She will also release a The Making of 'Right
Now' video, and another video with footage from her past live performances.
Mari also answered various questions from the audience. Here's a summary:
She goes to three to five auditions for acting roles each month.
Spyder Games hasn't aired yet--Mari thinks they are holding it until June. She is in the fifteenth
episode. She plays a Japanese girl shopping in a boutique.
She was having fun when she made the Macross TV series. It was the first things she did in show
business. By the time the movie was made, her own album was out and her music career had started. When they
made the movie, the pictures were behind, and it was hard to act without anything on the screen.
Mari did one magazine interview along with Haruhiko Mikimoto, talking about Macross. She met him once
more after that. He is very quiet, sometimes it's hard to tell what he's thinking about. He liked one idol
singer when he was making Macross, and that influenced him.
No Limit is only available through her website. She will try to get her next album, Right Now,
in the record stores.
The MTV people are using Mari in a game show they are developing, called Living Dolls. The
casting director is the same one who hired her for Spyder Games. It's not certain if she will be in the show
as a contestant, or if they are just using her to develop it.
While working on Living Dolls, one of the photographers told her that her voice reminded him of
Robotech. He was surprised to learn that she had played the original Minmay.
Her goal is for her video to be on MTV or VH1.
She started writing songs for her new album as soon as No Limit was completed. She talked to many
musicians about working on her new album, and she finally found someone to work with who will really
support her and not try to impose ideas on her.
Half of Right Now will be supported by musicians from the band Toto.
She met a member of Toto at the LA Music Awards, where she was nominated for the "Pop Artist of
the Year" award.
She is planning to work with the band for Beck, and also some of the musicians she's worked with in the past.
Her favorite band is Third Eye Blind. She also likes Nine Days, Goo Goo Dolls, Depeche Mode, and Squeeze. She
likes rock bands and music with interesting chord changes.
People are surprised when the learn who Mari is. She has fun watching those reactions.
Mari's favorite song from Macross is Ai Oboeteimasuka. She also likes
Angel's Paints from the movie. Her favorite songs from No Limit are
Us and Sudden Kiss.
For her new album, she likes everything but she usually likes the newest song the best. The newest song
on the upcoming album is called If you really want to know. She also likes the title song,
The new album will be half in English and half in Japanese, in order to please both her Japanese and American
The video she is making about Right Now shows musicians playing, discussing the music, interviews,
and so forth. She said that her fans should feel free to send requests for what should be in the interviews. The
other video will be footage of her previous live concerts.
She would be happy to do voice acting again, but there haven't been any offers yet. She doesn't get any auditions
for voice acting.
She's had auditions for parts on Charmed, soap operas, and some movies.
When she goes to auditions, she has to compete with people who don't have accents. The way auditions work
is that her manager submits her picture, and the casting director chooses people based on the pictures. Next,
she meets the casting director and reads lines. Some casting directors will reject people who have an accent.
Mari took accent lessons from Jessica Drake, the speech coach who worked with Tom Hanks on
Forrest Gump. The lessons interfered with her singing, which has to sound natural.
She did a radio commercial for the MTV music awards in 1998, half in Japanese and half in English.
JVC/Victor asked Mari to write Only You for the Macross Digital Mission VF-X
Playstation game, some songs for Tomo Sakurai's album, and a duet with Tomo Sakurai. There is a soundtrack
album for the Playstation game, for people who aren't good enough at the game to reach the song.
She's never written any really angry songs. She thinks she could do it, but questions whether her fans
would want to here it. Her song Come On! from Sonic Boom is a little angry, and
there will be a song on her next album called You don't love me which is kind of an angry song.
It will have an "angry" guitar solo.
She has a lot of clothes, but it only takes her five or ten minutes to pick an outfit. She's good at co-ordinating
Intro to Anime for Parents Panel
Mari was on the "Intro to Anime for Parents" panel with two other guests, Stan Sakai and Fred Patten.
The panel was mostly a discussion of the differences in censorship and what is considered "suitable for
children" between the US and Japan.
Saturday Autograph Session
After the panels Mari had an autograph session. She sold CDs and T-shirts, and signed various Macross-related items.
Mari's concert began just after 6 PM in the theater at the Santa Clara convention center, and the stadium
seating ensured that everyone had a good view. In an effort to minimize lines, the Fanime staff had tickets printed
which were handed out in the morning. The tickets were all given out long before the concert started, and the lines
were still quite long.
Most of the songs Mari performed were from her upcoming album. She performed some of the songs while playing
a piano, and the others were accompanied by the partially-completed tracks for the new album. It was sort of
a preview of how the songs would sound on the album.
She began with More than yesterday,
which had been requested by one of the Fanime staff. Next she sang Endless Summer, a new song in
She followed that with Sing for me, a new Japanese song which she had performed once at Genghis Cohen.
She then sang If you really want to know, a brand new song in English.
Next she sang Right Now, the title song of her new album. She's performed this one a few times before
and it's my favorite of her new songs. After that, she sang Ai Oboeteimasuka.
Finally, Andy and Ryan went up on stage and joined her in singing another new song, Take it easy.
Mari's Sunday concert began around 12:30 PM in the convention center theater. There was a good crowd for this
one as well. Most of the songs were the same as the Saturday concert, but Mari sang Rained Again
instead of More than yesterday. This is another song from her new album, and it's very good.
Sunday Autograph Session
After the concert Mari had another autograph session. She sold CDs and T-shirts, and signed various
things for her fans.
This page was last modified on Apr 8, 2001 at 4:21 PM.