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Tom Smith gets ready for the first UK performance from gothic Lolita icon Kanon Wakeshima

Cello-wielding songstress Kanon Wakeshima is backed by one of the big names in Japan’s Gothic Lolita and visual kei scenes. Mana, leader of the group Malice Mizer was also the man responsible for rocketing the superstar Gackt to fame. Now, Mana feels like he’s found a new star.

“I instinctively knew she was the one,” he states. “As a lover of classical music, it was the fact that she sang and played the cello that I sensed a world of future possibilities.”

These possibilities first materialised as Kanon’s debut single ‘Still Doll’, the ending theme to the first series of Vampire Knight, and a song not too unlike Kanon. It features mature, gothic style melodies and combines it a sweet and youthful veneer. “She has a very mature side for a teenager, but at the same time, she’s likely to wear a ring in the shape of a cookie or a piece of candy,” comments Mana.  “She has both the air of a mature adult and a child-like side which is what makes her such a unique individual.”

Likening her to manufactured pop isn’t entirely fair, music has been a big part of life. She was born into a music-loving family where she was encouraged to play the cello at just three years of age when she was barely bigger than the instrument.  Even her name has a musical background, coming from the word ‘canon’ and the kanji meaning ‘the sound of flowers’. And until she caught the attention of Sony Music at an audition, she had been in bands throughout high school.

Now, Kanon will hold her first UK concert at Hyper Japan this July where she will hold two charity performances; one on Saturday 23rd and the other one Sunday 24th. She will also be on the judging panel to select the cutest candidate for the UK Kawaii Star of the Year competition. Fans can also ask her questions during a Q&A session on Friday 22nd.

Kanon Wakeshima’s second single ‘Suna no Oshiro’ is the ending theme to Vampire Knight Guilty, available now on DVD by Manga Entertainment.

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