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[Photoshoot&Interview] WINNER (1) Greeting the First Anniversary of their Japanese Debut, Celebrated with Fans on Sept. 9th at Nakano Sun Plaza Concert!

WINNER celebrated their first anniversary of their Japanese debut and started their Japan tour “WINNER JAPAN TOUR 2015” in a year.

Seungyoon: “It has already been an year. I think time passes by really quickly. During the past year, seeing my members mature through what we experienced this past year satisfies me as a leader but we are still rookies! We’re in the midst of our tour right now but we think we need to develop still as we practice and research our performance, singing, and rapping. We will work hard!”

Jinwoo: “During this past year, time went by in the blink of an eye as we each had our individual promotions so we didn’t have many group promotions whether it was in Japan or Korea. With this tour, we started promotions as 5 members so with this opportunity, I hope we can release Japanese and Korean albums and widen our promotions.”

On September 9th, WINNER held a concert at Nakano Sun Plaza, Tokyo. They performed their original Japanese songs live naturally and charmed their fans with their overwhelming effect of each song. Melody, lyrics, rap, dance… It could be seen that everything was from the members’ hearts and the audience become enamoured by the confidence and power that comes from singing songs they produced. Their confidence at times did not just mean the continuous decorating of notes, rather the overall aesthetics that pull throughout the stage. With just their raw voices that are not completely tidied, their simple expression brings forth their skills and delivers their truest thoughts.

During the encore, the fans prepared a banner event for the members where they displayed banners that said “WINNER, Japan Debut 1st Anniversary, Congratulations”

All the members expressed their heartfelt gratefulness as they said, “We’re so surprised!” “When did you prepare this?” “Thank you!”. Seungyoon received one of the banners from the first row of fans and disappeared backstage for a moment to come out with a banner which he personally rewrote to say “INNER CIRCLE, 1st Anniversary, Congratulations”.

Seungyoon: “Before I went backstage, Taehyun said, ‘We always receive events and presents prepared by our fans but we want to do something for them too but we can’t do anything,” I saw the surprise event banners and I wanted to do something in return. I crossed out the ‘W’ of ‘WINNER’ and wrote ‘CIRCLE’ after it.”

Seeing banners onstage and in the audience as Seungyoon yelled, “Let’s walk together forever!” was a heart-bursting sight. It was a moment when WINNER and fans, each and every person, united their hearts into one.

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[Photoshoot&Interview] WINNER (2) To the Latter Half of Their Hall Tour, “WINNER JAPAN TOUR 2015”, Where They Travel to 10 Cities and Hold 17 Concerts!

WINNER members enjoyed the time they spent with their fans that day. However, they shared that they were not completely comfortable before the start of the tour.

Jinwoo: “Our first concert was at Shiga on September 6th and we were worried that INNER CIRCLE JAPAN might’ve forgotten about us and whether they would come to our concert. However, many people came and we were really touched.”

Mino: “The time we spent in preparing for our concert was short and there were so many lyrics and new choreographies we had to memorise so before we held our first concert, we were anxious. However, we worked hard to show a perfect stage so I think we were able to show our cool side.”

Will it be alright even if they didn’t release new songs? They had two concerts in one day at times, will their energy hold? They had new choreographies and many things they needed to memorise and the time they had to prepare was so short, among other worries, each of them had burdens they had to fight before starting the concert. However, seeing the smiling faces of the fans who gathered at the venue “kicked away” their anxieties, Seungyoon stated with a smile.

Talk about being conflicted and uneasy about having to perform live (hold concerts) at a time when no new songs being released has been mentioned by G-Dragon of BIGBANG as well on dome tour stages. Talk about definitely performing new songs next time. As artists who create their own music, they must strongly desire having their fans listen and greatly enjoy new songs quickly. This must apply to WINNER as well.

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[Photoshoot&Interview] WINNER (3) Seungyoon, “Are you ready to walk with WINNER until forever!?”

In addition to their current tour, WINNER’s “WINNER FIRST JAPAN TOUR 2014” in DVD and Blu-Ray, which documents their first Japan tour, has been released on August 26th.

The tour that took place last year gathered 25,000 fans as they traveled to 5 cities and held 11 concerts. The DVD (and Blu-Ray) contains the ZEPP TOKYO concert that took place on October 11th (Saturday), the time WINNER spent resting at Hokkaido Rusutsu Resort, and snippets from the time of the entire tour that amount to an hour long documentary. Towards the end of the DVD, they cry poignant tears onstage. The members’ hearts towards their first tour and their hot passion for music turned into tears that were difficult to stop.

In one of the interviews that is also in the DVD, it shows Seungyoon saying, “From when I was born, I was certain of becoming a singer” and as soon as he asks the fans who came to the concert, “Are you ready to walk with WINNER until forever!?” the audience erupted into loud cheers.

Taehyun: “The last concert was memorable. All 5 of us cried. We’re always grateful to our fans.”

Seungyoon: “I think you can see our fresh side. You’ll have fun watching it because it includes our natural and daily happenings, not just our performance onstage.”

Jinwoo: “It was my first time to crossdress so my head was filled with the pressures of making suer I didn’t make any mistakes…”

Hoon: “We went to a onsen at Sapporo. We filmed all 5 of us in towels going into an onsen but for some reason, it wasn’t included in the DVD. It is a good memory only we will cherish (laughs)”

Currently, WINNER is halfway through their first hall tour, “WINNER JAPAN TOUR 2015”, travelling to a total of 10 cities and holding 17 concerts. After concluding their tour, it has been confirmed that they will hold an event at Okinawa. Leader Seungyoon talked about their future plans with shining eyes.

Seungyoon: “Nevertheless, it would be a dream come true to stand on a dome stage in Japan. Our largest goal is to become a group that is loved by all the people of Japan and Korea. We want to become a group that can explore genres such as dance, rock, hiphop, among others flexibly.”

Translation by: @chrissy96_

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