For this month’s artist spotlight, we’re focusing on model, singer, and actress, AKIRA from Chiba, Japan! AKIRA started her career young and has been modeling since the age of 12. And yes, modeling is indeed an art (and one she is excellent at). In 2007, she helped form the band Disacode signed to K-Point Label, in which she worked as the vocalist and central focus. Later, she was joined by members Marcy, Shin, and Daichi. In naming the band, AKIRA wanted the band to represent pushing boundaries and combined 3 English words “Dis-a-code” to do so.
The following year, she began working as a model for KERA and KERA BOKU Magazines, primarily modeling Danso-Style or Boys-Style Fashion, a style dedicated to more masculine, but pretty boy type (Ikemen) looks for women, and in KERA’s case, with a more gothic twist. (Interesting insight, she also used to work at a Maid Cafe specializing in Tsudere type waitresses. Perhaps that was a precursor to her job with KERA? 🙂 ) And put it simply, she killed it. She was (and is) absolutely fantastic at her job, one she continues to do today.
AKIRA expanded her singing career in 2014 with the start of her solo works by releasing her hit single “Aoki Tsuki Michite” (蒼き月満ちて) which ran as the ending theme to the “Black Butler: Book of Circus” anime. This time, the album was released under the Sony Label. Additionally, AKIRA has performed as an actress numerous times, including in the movie “Ai Ore!” and stage plays such as “Sengoku Basara” (as Uesagi Kenshin) and “Vampire Knight” (as Kaname Kuran). The latter stage play I managed to see live and blogged about in my Japan centered blog which you can read about here.
Check out some of AKIRA’s fantastic work below!
KERA Cover Page Modeling
“Aoki Tsuki Michite” Music Video
“Kirei Toroimen No Shirabe” (キリエ・トロイメンの調べ) Music Video (see translation here)
Acting as Kaname Kuran in “Vampire Knight”
(Unfortunately, high quality clips of her acting are hard to come by! But for now, until it likely gets taken down, you can see her as Kaname here in this full length video of the Vampire Knight Musical here. If you know of any great clips of her acting, let me know! I’d love to be able to share them here!)
AKIRA’s Q&A Panel from Katsucon 2019, filmed by Raven Revenant on YouTube:
Want to support and learn more about AKIRA? You can find her and DISACODE on their official website and social media here (all in Japanese):
She also often goes to various entertainment conventions around the world. Be sure to keep an eye on her Twitter and Instagram feeds for updates on which ones. You can read about my spazing about meeting her at Katsucon 2019 in this blog post here as well as some of the cooler things that I learned about her while there!
What makes AKIRA a wonderful artist isn’t necessarily that she does so many different things, but that she sticks to who she is and is true to herself. She doesn’t try to hide her instincts to try out new fashions and styles; she embraces it and uses it to make her art uniquely her own. As with the title of her band – she works to push the envelope with every new thing she does, exploring new territories whenever possible. Whether with our own art or just in our own lives, we can all learn a thing or two from AKIRA. So check her out! You won’t be disappointed. 🙂