Home > Kanjani8, Translations > Ryuhei Maruyama wants to confidently say he’s a pop star (translation)

Ryuhei Maruyama wants to confidently say he’s a pop star (translation)

22:03 JST January 12, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

週刊朝日 Asahi Weekly magazine

January 21 2011 edition

Ryuhei Maruyama (Kanjani8) faces a new challenge with his upcoming stage play “Gilbert Grape”,  the world’s first stage adaptation of the novel, which has already been turned into a movie starring Johnny Depp.

“I want to be able to say, ‘I’m a pop star!’ with pride.”

“I always wanted to have more work so I’m having a lot of fun right now.  I get excited every day trying to guess what I’m going to do next.”

Maruyama is part of the seven-member group Kanjani8 who have just gone around the country on their concert tour, he’s been working on his TV drama, and he’s begun preparing for his upcoming stage play of Gilbert Grape.

When we asked him whether this was the busiest he’s ever been since making his debut, the star put on a huge smile.

“But wouldn’t you be happy if your schedule was full up?”

In his band, Maruyama plays bass guitar, but when he had joined his agency he was a guitarist.

“(My agency’s president) Johnny-san told me, ‘you’re big so you should play bass’.  And this is a world where if you don’t do what you’re told, you won’t survive….(My drama co-star) Daisuke Shima-san told me, ‘it must be hard being a pop star today because no one accepts you unless you’re real’.”

While the star constantly smiles and brightens up the room, Maruyama said he does not do it alone.

“It’s because the people around me create that kind of environment.”

The Johnny’s star also talked about the challenges facing him today.

“With plays it’s important to make your dialogue and your movements convey your emotions.  It’s the same with dancing and instruments, it’s not fun unless you’re trying to get something across to people.  My future ambitions?  I want to do as many plays and TV shows and sing songs and dance.  When someone asks me, ‘is this what a pop star does?’, I want to be able to say, ‘of course, I’m a pop star!’ with pride (laughs).”

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