Turns out there’s an even larger version of this famous face, and she’s someone worth listening to. 

Back in 2021, a giant 3-D billboard debuted at Shinjuku, giving us a new way to view ads above a busy intersection in Tokyo. In the years since, the curved screen has wowed passersby with a variety of extra-large characters, ranging from Spy Family’s Anya through to Monster Hunter’s Malzeno, and now there’s a new face appearing on the rooftop for a limited time.

While this famous face needs no introduction to local pedestrians, visitors from overseas might be wondering who she is and what she’s doing up there. Well, her name is Sayuri Ishikawa, and she’s one of the most lauded enka singers in Japan.

To the uninitiated, enka is a style of Japanese music that features kobushi, a melismatic vocal technique, and lyrics that often centre around love and loss. Ishikawa’s vocal skill and heartfelt performances have made the 65-year-old a Japanese icon, and as this year marks 50 years since she made her debut, it’s fitting that she be given a grand rooftop stage from which to perform.

▼ Ishikawa sings and calls out to pedestrians from the billboard, known as “Cross Shinjuku Vision”.

While it’s easy to think nothing could be bigger than a grand appearance on the giant display, it turns out there’s an even bigger Ishikawa appearing on T.V. screens around the country at the moment.

Like the billboard, this television commercial promotes UHA Mikakuto’s Nodo Ame Ex, a popular brand of cough drops that combines “the power of herbs” with “the deliciousness of honey milk”.

While Ishikawa’s performance on the actual billboard is different to the billboard pictured in the television commercial, they’re equally show-stopping.

▼ The T.V. ad depicts passersby stopping in their tracks at the sight of Ishikawa on a billboard designed to look like Cross Shinjuku Vision.

Ishikawa has been the face of these cough drops for a while now, appearing in numerous commercials while personally vouching for them, saying she finds them useful when dealing with a sore throat.

▼ This behind-the-scenes video shows the making of the ad, and how they made the singer look 66-metres (216.5-feet) tall.

The new commercial debuted on 25 November, along with the ad at Cross Shinjuku Vision, the latter of which will only be screening for a limited time, until 1 December. The dual campaign is a fun way to blur the lines between commercial and real-life, so keep an eye out on the rooftop for the famous singer while you can, before she’s replaced by something like Pompompurin’s giant butt.

Source, images: PR Times
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