Two musical titans are meeting on stage in the upcoming production of “Death Note,” based on a popular Japanese comic of the same name.
And the response from fans has been explosive.
The first and second rounds of tickets sold out as soon as they were released online, meaning that 60,000 (roughly 70 percent of all the seats) have already been reserved.
The titans in question are Kim Jun-su and Hong Kwang-ho, who will play the musical’s lead characters L and Light, respectively.
Light is a high school student who one days finds the Death Note, a supernatural object that kills a person whose name is written on it. Light tries to rule the world with this deadly notebook, while detective L tries to stop him.
Kim and Hong – the two most sought-after actors in the musical scene – have joined the show as the main cast. They will therefore go on stage 51 times until October, with no alternates.
It goes without saying that Kim, as a member of the K-pop trio JYJ, possesses enormous star power. His competency as a musical actor was recognized in “Mozart” and “Elizabeth,” both of which sold out all their tickets.
During a press conference for his upcoming musical “Death Note” which took place on June 1, JYJ‘s Junsu told reporters that he is running out of colors to dye his hair with.
“I haven’t had a huge issue [because of my dyed hair]. For the past ten years, I have dyed and bleached a lot. It’s to the point that when I look for new colors to dye my hair with, I can’t find any on the chart that I haven’t yet tried,” Junsu said.
He continued, “If I have one problem with my hair, it’s that sometimes when I dry it with a hairdryer, strand fly about like cotton candy. Apart from that, I don’t worry too much.”
At a press conference held on June 1 for upcoming musical “Death Note,” the cast members shared their definitions of love in light of the characters they depict.
JYJ’s Junsu, who plays the character L in the musical, defined love as sacrifice, “The greatest definition of love is sacrifice. In ‘Death Note’ the musical, you can see the sacrifice in Rem’s (Park Hye Na) unconditional love for Misa (Jeong SunA).”
Park Hye Na also referenced her character Rem as an example of true love, “There is a scene where [Rem] puts her life on the line so that Misa can attain love. She transforms because of Misa’s devoted love. I believe love is a sublime power that most humanizes and beautifies mankind.”
Hong Kwang Ho, who depicts Light, shared, “To me, love is giving up the starring role in my life. It’s taking on the supporting role and putting the people you love in the lead.”
Mentioning her character Misa, Jeong SunA said, “Misa is a character who loves Light [so much] that she gives him her all, but I think the love between me and Rem (Park Hye Na) is worth focusing on more. Sure, [Rem] admires Kira who avenged her parents, but it was the love between a human being and a god of death (shinigami) that touched my heart.”
Meanwhile, “Death Note” is a musical adaptation of the titular hit manga series by Takeshi Obata. It will run at the Seongnam Arts Center Opera House from June 20 to August 9.
JYJ‘s Junsu will soon be showing off his acting chops as the eccentric and mysterious character L in the musical “Death Note.” He will be acting opposite actor Hong Kwang Ho, who is playing the role of Light. On June 1, the two actors talked about working together at a press conference held along with their fellow cast members.
When asked about Junsu, Hong Kwang Ho says, “He has thoroughly prepared, and of course he is very skilled. When I heard that the other lead character would be played by Junsu when I signed up for the show, I knew it was going to be really fun to work with him.”
He adds, “Honestly, I unconsciously had a bit of a prejudice because he had started out as a singer, as an idol. Then I saw him perform in ‘December.’ That was the first time I’d seen him, and I thought to myself, ‘He’s not like the rest,’ and ‘He deserves to be up there.’”
“I’m happy to be working with him, and I’m really excited,” he says.
In reply, Junsu also talks about his co-star, saying that he had known that Hong Kwang Ho was an excellent singer and considers him to be one of the top musical actors in the country. “I had really wanted to perform with him, and I also really wanted to do a show that had two male leads. So I’m so happy to be working with him together in this show.”
The musical’s opening night performance will be held on June 20, and the show will run until August 9.
[NEWS] Musical actor Hong Kwang Ho admits he first judged Junsu for being an idol via Allkpop
K-pop singer and musical actor Kim Jun-su said the reason he was cast in the upcoming musical “Death Note” is because he was “deeply impressed” by the cult Japanese manga and anime series on which it is based.
“During my student days, I was deeply impressed by the ‘Death Note’ manga and animation. I really enjoyed reading and watching them,” said Junsu, who is known for being a member of K-pop trio JYJ.
“I heard ‘Death Note’ could be adapted into a musical a year or two before (it launched) and wanted to star in it,” said Junsu at a press for the musical, Monday. “I made a request to star in it through my agency.”
The musical adaptation of “Death Note,” which is already underway in Japan, features a genius private detective named L — played by Junsu — and a high school student bent on murder through a supernatural notebook. The notebook grants its owner the ability to kill people by writing their names in the notebook.
Celebrated musical actor Hong Kwang-ho will play the evil high school student, named “Light,” when the musical comes to Korea later in June.
The original cult manga series was published between 2003 and 2006, followed by a popular anime TV series between 2007 to 2008.
The musical, which premiered in Japan on April 6, will run in Korea for seven weeks from June 20. Other actors starring in the musical are Jeong Sun-ah, Park Hye-na and Kang Hong-seok.
“I am practicing hard with top actors. I wish to meet the audience soon,” said Junsu at a press call on Monday afternoon.
JYJ′s Kim Junsu shared about the burden of being single cast in the music Death Note.
On June 1, Kim Junsu attended the press conference for musical Death Note at the Floating Island in Banpo, where he shared that he felt some burden about his single-casting.
“I had a lot of worries this time around. However, as I made the decision on the single-casting, I thought it was the best time to be with great actors, whom I can lean on.”
“I will be having the most shows in my musical career. If 15 shows have been the most, this time, the musical will open up to 22 shows,” said Junsu. “Also because the location is in Seongnam, I am a bit nervous as it′s a bit off the metropolitan area. But I′m glad and reassured to be doing it with great actors.”
Kim Junsu has been cast as the character L, a mysterious detective that attempts to solve unsolved cases from around the world. Through the ′death note,′ L goes against a battle with Light (Hong Kwang Ho), who wants to become the god of the new world.
The musical Death Note is based on the original manga series by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata. The musical is a project created by Japan′s art director, Kuriyama Tamiyaga, music composer Frank Wildhorn, and music director Kim Moon Jung.
The Korean version of Death Note will run between June 11 and August 11 at the Seongnam Arts Center Opera House.
Photo Credit: Newsen/Jang Kyung Ho