In the continuing saga of the ratings of NHK Kohaku Uta Gassen, we have hit another low point. In fact, it is the lowest point in the show’s history. The second half of the show, the one deemed the most important, saw a record low rating of 37.3% in the Kanto region, down from last year’s 41.5%. This beats the previous low of 39.2%, which occurred in 2015. Ratings peaked in 1963 at 81.4%.
What is to blame for this though?
One broadcaster noted the the show has more of the feel of a sporting event than a music festival. It was also said that there was a lack of unity at NHK Hall, with this year’s Kohaku featuring too many recorded segments and performances from other locations. Last year’s ratings rise was attributed in part due to artists such as Kitajima Saburo, Kuwata Keisuke, and Yumi Matsutoya being on stage at NHK Hall.
Yuming was on stage this year, as was another special guest, Beat Takeshi. But unlike Yuming, Beat didn’t really interact with the show, leading a music industry official to say that this made the show feel like festival-like compared to last year.
An entertainment official also noted the lack of a major star at the show, naming Yonezu Kenshi, Spitz, Yazawa Eikichi, and Inoue Yosui as acts who were in negotiations to appear, but ultimately turned the show down.
It was also said that there is an absence of hit songs today, so Kohaku is sure to be affected.