The Mao cheer thread #3 - "For the love of skating"

arakwafan2006

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I have a translation request to our kind Japanese fans in this thread. During the 2013-2014 season, Lori did an interview where she talked about Mao and Daisuke's programs that she choreographed that season. I remember there was an translation of that interview on FSU but perhaps it is archived and I cannot find it anywhere else online. :(
If anyone could please translate the parts Lori said about Mao's Nocturne and her skating style, I'll greatly appreciate it.
Here is the original interview: https://www.nikkei.com/article/DGXNASFK0900P_Z01C13A1000000/?dg=1
I’d love it too. I wish TSL could interview Lori
 

Miki89

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I’d love it too. I wish TSL could interview Lori
I found someone who speaks Japanese to help translate the article for me. :) I will just post some of the highlights from the article. All quotes by Lori Nichol.

"For me, Nocturne is sweet, soft, thoughtful, beautiful, but it is also a strong song. The song perfectly matches the image
of Mao."
"I think of Chopin everytime I see Mao. She skates on the ice like a feather. Chopin is the perfect composer for Mao."
"Mao has a special connection with the ice. She skates effortlessly and moves forward as if she is flying. It is smooth as a hot knife cutting through butter. The sound of her skating is so beautiful that I can immediately tell that it was Mao."

Lori also said that she regrets not being able to work with Mao on choreography for the Vancouver Olympics. It seems that their relationship became a little distant during that time, though the reason isn't clear and Lori doesn't elaborate. Looking back, 2009-2010 was the only season that Mao did not work with Lori for choreography. I am thinking that it might have been JSF's idea; the thought that she should have the full backing from TAT for the Olympics. In hindsight, it was not a good approach but we have to remember that TAT was still seen as a champion maker at that time.
 

arakwafan2006

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I found someone who speaks Japanese to help translate the article for me. :) I will just post some of the highlights from the article. All quotes by Lori Nichol.

"For me, Nocturne is sweet, soft, thoughtful, beautiful, but it is also a strong song. The song perfectly matches the image
of Mao."
"I think of Chopin everytime I see Mao. She skates on the ice like a feather. Chopin is the perfect composer for Mao."
"Mao has a special connection with the ice. She skates effortlessly and moves forward as if she is flying. It is smooth as a hot knife cutting through butter. The sound of her skating is so beautiful that I can immediately tell that it was Mao."

Lori also said that she regrets not being able to work with Mao on choreography for the Vancouver Olympics. It seems that their relationship became a little distant during that time, though the reason isn't clear and Lori doesn't elaborate. Looking back, 2009-2010 was the only season that Mao did not work with Lori for choreography. I am thinking that it might have been JSF's idea; the thought that she should have the full backing from TAT for the Olympics. In hindsight, it was not a good approach but we have to remember that TAT was still seen as a champion maker at that time.
I wonder if Mao regrets the Tarasova years. I expected a dance coach to bring out of Mao what Mr.Sato did in her basics and softness. TAT viewed Mao as a strong Japanese woman when Mao’s strength is what Lori described. I still love the Rachmaninoff free for Sochi but often wonder how it would look with Lori’s nuanced approach.
 

chapis

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I wonder if Mao regrets the Tarasova years. I expected a dance coach to bring out of Mao what Mr.Sato did in her basics and softness. TAT viewed Mao as a strong Japanese woman when Mao’s strength is what Lori described. I still love the Rachmaninoff free for Sochi but often wonder how it would look with Lori’s nuanced approach.
I don´t think so. Mao always did whatever she wanted to do, Mao once got Morozov's choreography, she did not like it and decided not to use it, it was that simple for her. If to people or the judges did not like some program of her, I do not think she cared, she was always very proud of Tatiana and even asked for choreographies for her exhibitions. Besides, Mao's mom loved Tatiana, I think that could have been very influential for Mao to feel a great admiration for her.
 

Spun Silver

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I don´t think so. Mao always did whatever she wanted to do, Mao once got Morozov's choreography, she did not like it and decided not to use it, it was that simple for her. If to people or the judges did not like some program of her, I do not think she cared, she was always very proud of Tatiana and even asked for choreographies for her exhibitions. Besides, Mao's mom loved Tatiana, I think that could have been very influential for Mao to feel a great admiration for her.
Excuse me, that is Tatiana Anatolyevna you're talking about! I doubt even Putin calls her Tatiana! :glamor: :TT1: :nopryde: (btw, is that pink emoji TAT? It looks like her.)

You may be right but for me I look back on the years of the struggle with Yu Na, her mother's illness and her jumps as Mao's dark period. I wouldn't be surprised if there's some regret mixed in with the pride.
 

Miki89

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I don’t think Mao regrets anything other than her own mistakes at Vancouver, which she eventually moved on as she said she has no regrets about her career. She once said that she considered Bells of Moscow one of her personal favorites because it brought her strength.

My opinion is that the part-time coaching arrangement was a mistake. TAT as a choreographer is more mixed but I can’t deny that she brought drama and power to Mao. My least favorite programs were her creations but she also made Ballade, Mao’s best program in my opinion. I also think the Mao in Ritual Dance could not have happened without those years with TAT.
 

gotoschool

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I can't say how Mao truly feels since I don't know her, but if I tried to guess I would prefer to use words such as resilient confidence and overcoming disappointments as opposed to ones with what I consider to be more negative connotations such as regret and pride. Plus, Mao managed so many remarkable triumphs despite being severely shortchanged by the system. I think working with Tatianna Tarasova exposed Mao directly to Russian culture where she trained and lived for a brief period. I certainly think this gave Mao the ability to connect more directly emotionally with composers like Aram Khachaturian, Tchaikovsky and even more Rachmaninov. Mao also studied the Russian language at university and I am sure she was heavily influenced by Russian ballet and together I believe this contributed to the authenticity and resonance of her performances to Russian performers culminating in her legendary Sochi LP performance.

Secondly, there was a an artistic flair, elegance and controlled yet passionate intensity with a greater range of emotions and expression that Mao developed under Tatianna especially with Bells of Moscow in my opinion. This program also has the best one handed Biellman, sit spins and spiral sequence I have ever seen and the best step sequence I had ever seen to that point, though I think Mao surpassed this later, and all done with two triple axels. Beyond choreography, I think Tatianna working directly with Mao as her coach was likely one of the reasons the change was more pronounced. Mao also met Tatianna's assistant (I feel terrible I can't remember her name) during this time and I believe she was a great and lasting support for Mao who likely contributed even more to Mao's great Sochi LP performance and to Mao's great performances at Worlds 2010.

What I liked so much about Mao's performances is that the expression seemed very classical and refined yet still highly authentic and emotionally compelling reminding me of a time in the past when displaying emotions in acting drama or performance was done in a more realistic and less overwrought way and I think Mao's time under Tatianna helped Mao develop this even more. There was also the influence of Tatianna's great exhibition before she was Mao's coach like Por Una Cabeza.

I don't think the elephant in the room can be ignored either when discussing Mao's "struggles" and feelings because it is such a widespread view as seen on youtube posts and that is Mao's disadvantageous scoring and the refusal for many to look outside the narrow box of a limited and in my view unjust system just as other artists, performers or even leaders from the past had greatness that wasn't "accepted" or held in favor by systems. Mao has showed me this conflict and what I consider to be discrimination clearly just as trying to play classic ragtime and jazz composers on guitar has because I felt they were not given their proper esteem and evaluation by the powers that be. I don't know anyone in figure skating who has ever had such a profound impact with such classic performances and a great following that has also been as obviously held down by the system in scoring and treated so poorly by her own federation.

That said, Tatianna has been very rough on Mao in comments, but she has also supported Mao a lot in comments, so I think her statements are a mixed bag.
 
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Hi everyone, I’m new to this forum. I’ve been a Mao fan for a very long time.
I came across this interview which I think was broadcasted quite recently. I did a quick summary of what was said in the video as I really enjoyed this interview. The video is 25 mins long, so apologies for the long post! Also I’m not a native Japanese speaker, so hopefully I’ve interpreted what was said correctly.

The interviewer mentioned when Mao made her comeback, she was aiming to participate in the PC Olympics, so he asked her what her feelings were watching these Olympics that she didn’t end up participating in.
Mao said when she came back to competition, she was indeed aiming for these Olympics. But during that time, she felt physically and mentally she was a her limit and had done as much as she could. The feeling of having done everything she could to aim for that goal was much stronger (than any regret of not being able to participate).

Especially, when she was watching these Olympics and seeing the wonderful performance by Kaori and Satoko, she knew they had worked hard towards these Olympics and was glad she was able to pass the baton onto them.
The video then talks about her feelings post announcing her retirement. Mao mentioned at that time, she felt she had had enough of skating and wanted to leave it behind for a while. She even said things like maybe I should throw away my skating boots.

After that she went travelling alone and did some soul searching and also attending her exhibition events around the country. The video then shows people thanking Mao for what she’s done and they always feel inspired by her.
Mao mentions that everyone’s support gives her a lot of power, when she thought about what she could do (for others), there is really only skating. Also, she felt sorry for saying goodbye to figure skating which has grown up with her along the way since she was five years old. She wanted to skate not just to express gratitude to her supporters, but also towards skating itself.

The video then shows Mao visiting an outdoor man-made skating rink in Fukushima in Feb 2018 that had been rebuilt after it was destroyed by the earthquake and tsunami in 2011. Mao actually visit the same place 3 years ago after Sochi Olympics, back then the rink wasn’t rebuilt yet, and Mao made a promise to the manager of the rink, Kanno-san, that she would definitely come back here once it is rebuilt.

Mao says she really enjoys teaching skating. Although now she’s concentrating on ice shows, but when she thinks about what she could be doing when she stops skating, she has the thought of coaching.
The interviewer asked Mao, what is figure skating to her now. She said it was like a lover, family – it was her destiny. To have encountered figure skating was her destiny.

Lastly Mao said her ultimate dream is to live a self-sufficient lifestyle. After she’s done everything she wanted to do, she’d move to some mountainous place, if it’s near the sea she can catch her own fish and go hunting for food (and preparing/cooking a wild pig). Interviewer asked her why she had this thought, and she said it’s because she loves food! She thinks this would be the most extravagant lifestyle. She’d like to live a free and carefree life.
 

Spun Silver

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Hi everyone, I’m new to this forum. I’ve been a Mao fan for a very long time.
I came across this interview which I think was broadcasted quite recently. I did a quick summary of what was said in the video as I really enjoyed this interview. The video is 25 mins long, so apologies for the long post! Also I’m not a native Japanese speaker, so hopefully I’ve interpreted what was said correctly.

The interviewer mentioned when Mao made her comeback, she was aiming to participate in the PC Olympics, so he asked her what her feelings were watching these Olympics that she didn’t end up participating in.
Mao said when she came back to competition, she was indeed aiming for these Olympics. But during that time, she felt physically and mentally she was a her limit and had done as much as she could. The feeling of having done everything she could to aim for that goal was much stronger (than any regret of not being able to participate).

Especially, when she was watching these Olympics and seeing the wonderful performance by Kaori and Satoko, she knew they had worked hard towards these Olympics and was glad she was able to pass the baton onto them.
The video then talks about her feelings post announcing her retirement. Mao mentioned at that time, she felt she had had enough of skating and wanted to leave it behind for a while. She even said things like maybe I should throw away my skating boots.

After that she went travelling alone and did some soul searching and also attending her exhibition events around the country. The video then shows people thanking Mao for what she’s done and they always feel inspired by her.
Mao mentions that everyone’s support gives her a lot of power, when she thought about what she could do (for others), there is really only skating. Also, she felt sorry for saying goodbye to figure skating which has grown up with her along the way since she was five years old. She wanted to skate not just to express gratitude to her supporters, but also towards skating itself.

The video then shows Mao visiting an outdoor man-made skating rink in Fukushima in Feb 2018 that had been rebuilt after it was destroyed by the earthquake and tsunami in 2011. Mao actually visit the same place 3 years ago after Sochi Olympics, back then the rink wasn’t rebuilt yet, and Mao made a promise to the manager of the rink, Kanno-san, that she would definitely come back here once it is rebuilt.

Mao says she really enjoys teaching skating. Although now she’s concentrating on ice shows, but when she thinks about what she could be doing when she stops skating, she has the thought of coaching.
The interviewer asked Mao, what is figure skating to her now. She said it was like a lover, family – it was her destiny. To have encountered figure skating was her destiny.

Lastly Mao said her ultimate dream is to live a self-sufficient lifestyle. After she’s done everything she wanted to do, she’d move to some mountainous place, if it’s near the sea she can catch her own fish and go hunting for food (and preparing/cooking a wild pig). Interviewer asked her why she had this thought, and she said it’s because she loves food! She thinks this would be the most extravagant lifestyle. She’d like to live a free and carefree life.
Welcome to FSU, and thanks for sharing this interview!

I'm so glad Mao is thinking of coaching eventually. As for her ultimate dream -wow! It is a little hard to imagine Mao living that rugged lifestyle (though I love the reason!).😁 Now if she has a tall, strong boyfriend to protect her from bears and help bring home the bacon while she grows the veggies, I could understand it better. Hope she plans this phase carefully -- it's a long way from figure skating!
 

chapis

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Hi everyone, I’m new to this forum. I’ve been a Mao fan for a very long time.
I came across this interview which I think was broadcasted quite recently. I did a quick summary of what was said in the video as I really enjoyed this interview. The video is 25 mins long, so apologies for the long post! Also I’m not a native Japanese speaker, so hopefully I’ve interpreted what was said correctly.

The interviewer mentioned when Mao made her comeback, she was aiming to participate in the PC Olympics, so he asked her what her feelings were watching these Olympics that she didn’t end up participating in.
Mao said when she came back to competition, she was indeed aiming for these Olympics. But during that time, she felt physically and mentally she was a her limit and had done as much as she could. The feeling of having done everything she could to aim for that goal was much stronger (than any regret of not being able to participate).

Especially, when she was watching these Olympics and seeing the wonderful performance by Kaori and Satoko, she knew they had worked hard towards these Olympics and was glad she was able to pass the baton onto them.
The video then talks about her feelings post announcing her retirement. Mao mentioned at that time, she felt she had had enough of skating and wanted to leave it behind for a while. She even said things like maybe I should throw away my skating boots.

After that she went travelling alone and did some soul searching and also attending her exhibition events around the country. The video then shows people thanking Mao for what she’s done and they always feel inspired by her.
Mao mentions that everyone’s support gives her a lot of power, when she thought about what she could do (for others), there is really only skating. Also, she felt sorry for saying goodbye to figure skating which has grown up with her along the way since she was five years old. She wanted to skate not just to express gratitude to her supporters, but also towards skating itself.

The video then shows Mao visiting an outdoor man-made skating rink in Fukushima in Feb 2018 that had been rebuilt after it was destroyed by the earthquake and tsunami in 2011. Mao actually visit the same place 3 years ago after Sochi Olympics, back then the rink wasn’t rebuilt yet, and Mao made a promise to the manager of the rink, Kanno-san, that she would definitely come back here once it is rebuilt.

Mao says she really enjoys teaching skating. Although now she’s concentrating on ice shows, but when she thinks about what she could be doing when she stops skating, she has the thought of coaching.
The interviewer asked Mao, what is figure skating to her now. She said it was like a lover, family – it was her destiny. To have encountered figure skating was her destiny.

Lastly Mao said her ultimate dream is to live a self-sufficient lifestyle. After she’s done everything she wanted to do, she’d move to some mountainous place, if it’s near the sea she can catch her own fish and go hunting for food (and preparing/cooking a wild pig). Interviewer asked her why she had this thought, and she said it’s because she loves food! She thinks this would be the most extravagant lifestyle. She’d like to live a free and carefree life.
Thank you so much!!!

Her wish of living in a mountainous place near the sea is my dream too :swoon:
 

rosewood

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Guys, Mao launched HOT shots on a men's high-end fashion magazine "GQ". :eek::love:
https://gqjapan.jp/magazine/backnumber/20180423/gq-vol180
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/23/gq-asada-01.jpg
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/23/gq-asada-02.jpg
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/23/gq-asada-03.jpg
http://img-mdpr.freetls.fastly.net/article/bwQY/nm/bwQYs1ix0P97TnBS3syQhUV6zWzzWjJ4RpahWMvKnUU.jpg
https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71G4HFgF7JL.jpg
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/19/5358100902001_5772379572001_5772372875001-vs.jpg
https://img-mdpr.freetls.fastly.net/article/sNbQ/nm/sNbQlUJbH_tZjclViFYe28FglsjpmEIv3LJD7Y1laXg.jpg

'making' video
https://bcsecure04-a.akamaihd.net/3...mp4?pubId=5358100902001&videoId=5772372875001
captures
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DbdDU2FVAAIE1Hi.jpg
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DbdDU2ZV0AAoX27.jpg
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DbdDU2GVAAAmbiY.jpg

article
https://gqjapan.jp/woman/muse/20180423/mao-mai-behind-story

According to the article, her manager Wada asked the magazine staff "Please shoot them sexy for their ages and cool." Wada added, "I'll leave all it up to the magazine team. The team can take whatever direction "sexy" to be."

Themes were "Disco" "Dance" and "70's". They were in Valentino's dresses etc.

Maciej Kucia shot those photos. His comment is "People already has "cute" image from her, yet, to me she's a sexy WOMAN who has more than that. Overflowing self-confidence, energy, elegance and powerfulness were the things that I wanted to express in my photos. Her sexsiness exists in those aspects. I wish people will find that side of her by my photos.


And these are photos which shows her usual angelic smiles. These were on women's high-end fashion magazine "Spur" published this week too. :inavoid:
https://spur.hpplus.jp/magazine/topics/201804/13/OTVjiHg/
http://static-spur.hpplus.jp/upload/image/manager/35/IjaCRHA-1200x630.jpg
http://scontent-nrt1-1.cdninstagram...39_1043623432458281_6000448300426199040_n.jpg


What a big swing Mao shows from GQ to SPUR. That's our girl! :cheer::kickass:
 
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chapis

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Guys, Mao launched HOT shots on a men's high-end fashion magazine "GQ". :eek::love:
https://gqjapan.jp/magazine/backnumber/20180423/gq-vol180
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/23/gq-asada-01.jpg
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/23/gq-asada-02.jpg
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/23/gq-asada-03.jpg
http://img-mdpr.freetls.fastly.net/article/bwQY/nm/bwQYs1ix0P97TnBS3syQhUV6zWzzWjJ4RpahWMvKnUU.jpg
https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71G4HFgF7JL.jpg
https://gqjapan.jp/uploads/media/2018/04/19/5358100902001_5772379572001_5772372875001-vs.jpg
https://img-mdpr.freetls.fastly.net/article/sNbQ/nm/sNbQlUJbH_tZjclViFYe28FglsjpmEIv3LJD7Y1laXg.jpg

'making' video
https://bcsecure04-a.akamaihd.net/3...mp4?pubId=5358100902001&videoId=5772372875001
captures
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DbdDU2FVAAIE1Hi.jpg
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DbdDU2ZV0AAoX27.jpg
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DbdDU2GVAAAmbiY.jpg

article
https://gqjapan.jp/woman/muse/20180423/mao-mai-behind-story

According to the article, her manager Wada asked the magazine staff "Please shoot them sexy for their ages and cool." Wada added, "I'll leave all it up to the magazine team. The team can take whatever direction "sexy" to be."

Themes were "Disco" "Dance" and "70's". They were in Valentino's dresses etc.

Maciej Kucia shot those photos. His comment is "People already has "cute" image from her, yet, to me she's a sexy WOMAN who has more than that. Overflowing self-confidence, energy, elegance and powerfulness were the things that I wanted to express in my photos. Her sexsiness exists in those aspects. I wish people will find that side of her by my photos.


And these are photos which shows her usual angelic smiles. These were on women's high-end fashion magazine "Spur" published this week too. :inavoid:
https://spur.hpplus.jp/magazine/topics/201804/13/OTVjiHg/
http://static-spur.hpplus.jp/upload/image/manager/35/IjaCRHA-1200x630.jpg
http://scontent-nrt1-1.cdninstagram...39_1043623432458281_6000448300426199040_n.jpg


What a big swing Mao shows from GQ to SPUR. That's our girl! :cheer::kickass:
OMG, I love it, they look so beautiful :swoon::swoon::swoon:
 

gotoschool

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I don't know if any videos have been posted or not, but here are some clips of Mao's performances across Japan which began this month:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oR-5lToDcA

Here is my favorite moment in the short video. It brings back so many deeply moving memories. The triple loop I believe, step sequence and arabesque were done so wonderfully with so much emotion: https://youtu.be/2oR-5lToDcA?t=99 My favorite skater ever and in this short 1 minute clip she has never performed better, in my opinion.

The same moment in the Sochi LP

https://youtu.be/U_fp6aPtS1k?t=230
 

rosewood

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Actually the magazine is not a fashion magazine but Japan's No1 selling beauty-treatment magazine 'Biteki =美的' for skin care, cosmetics etc.
Here are other photos she uploaded from Biteki.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BjHGWh-g4Lf/?hl=en&taken-by=maoasada2509
https://www.instagram.com/p/BjHGMBsgS0k/?hl=en&taken-by=maoasada2509
https://www.instagram.com/p/BjHGIJDAAjc/?hl=en&taken-by=maoasada2509

The photo in my avatar is also from Biteki. Nice to see Mao enjoying photoshoot. She was on 4-5 fashion magazines plus Biteki this spring. Maybe it was for PRing Thanks Tour.

ETA:
Here is a TV commercial for Biteki.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-jOG33gZpQ
 
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rosewood

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Spun Silver

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Mao's great performance of " Cello Suite " Costume2 / THE ICE 2016 KITAKYUSHU
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s24cpM2mO9Q
I never saw that costume before. What an amazing program, esp when you consider she was doing it while coming to the conclusion that she could not complete the competitive season. It is fiendishly difficult for a struggling skater on the verge of retirement. And I can't imagine anyone else skating that. Lori gave Mao such a beautiful valentine to her fans and to the sport. It reminds me of Schubert's song "An die Musik" (To Music).
 

rosewood

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Mao's exhibition which has costumes, medals, photos, boots etc has drawn over 500K people in total. It was held in several cities from last September and has one more city to go.
https://www.oricon.co.jp/article/433535/

Here is the official twitter account of 'The Mao Asada Exhibition.'
https://twitter.com/asadamaoten
Her exhibition is now ongoing in the city hall of Ibaraki prefecture. It's the final spot. And it's invited by the local government as one of the PR events for 2019 National Athletic Meet in Ibaraki. It's also a memorial event for coming MTT show scheduled to be held in Ibaraki in August.

Here is a clip of the opening ceremony. It's fun to see her fans call her name "Mao-chaaaan" and said "I luuurve you" and "Me too" "Me too" "We all too." And in the end someone called the governor (by "Chiji"). And then everyone laughed. What a fun and heartwarming scene. :giggle:
https://twitter.com/hymmds_sk/status/1004962266150723584

News clips and photos.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fTp3gAiT74s
https://mainichi.jp/articles/20180609/k00/00m/040/026000c
http://blog.ibarakiguide.jp/placeblog/8226.html
http://sp.yomiuri.co.jp/photo/20180610/20180610-OYT1I50026-1.jpg
https://scontent.foko1-1.fna.fbcdn....=6093b3f186a95be65b31fc5c5f5c991d&oe=5BAD2DB4
https://scontent.foko1-1.fna.fbcdn....=cb83676b2631839bf039dd3769383db6&oe=5B817C49
______

The original Mao Asada Exhibition was organized by Takashimaya which is one of the most popular department store company in Japan. Their events have finished and announced they donated 960K yen to Save The Children Japan.
http://cache.yahoofs.jp/search/cache?c=uR2J0x4ds3UJ&p=浅田真央展+寄付金+高島屋&u=https://www.takashimaya.co.jp/sp/store/special/event/asada_charity.html
 

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