Japanese pop star Hatsune Miku takes the stage — as a 3-D hologram

[From The Los Angeles Times Technology blog]

Japanese pop star Hatsune Miku takes the stage — as a 3-D hologram

November 10, 2010

Pop princess Hatsune Miku is storming the music scene.

With her long cerulean pigtails and her part-schoolgirl, part-spy outfit, she’s easy on the eyes. Yes, her voice sounds like it might have gone through a little –- OK, a lot –- of studio magic. Legions of screaming fans and the requisite fan sites? She’s got ’em.

And, like many of her hot young singer peers, Miku is extremely, proudly fake. Like, 3-D hologram fake.

Miku is a singing, digital avatar created by Crypton Future Media that customers can purchase and then program to perform any song on a computer.

Crypton uses voices recorded by actors and runs them through Yamaha Corp.’s Vocaloid software -– marketed as “a singer in a box.” The result: A synthesized songstress that sounds far better than you ever have in your shower.

Crypton has even set up a record label called KarenT, with its own YouTube channel. The Vocaloidism blog has more details about the software.

A few months ago, a 3-D projection of Miku pranced around several stadium stages as part of a concert tour, where capacity crowds waved their glow sticks and sang along.  Here‘s the starlet performing a jingle titled, appropriately, “World Is Mine.”

The Blu-ray and DVD recordings of those events were recently released, according to SingularityHub, which also has more videos.

The virtual diva’s albums have also topped the Japanese charts. She’s on Facebook. We’ve seen living, breathing musicians at the Hollywood Bowl get less love.

It all reminds us a bit of S1m0ne. Remember her? She’s the sultry actress who captivated adoring audiences in the eponymous 2002 film. She was also completely computer-generated by Al Pacino’s character.

Somewhere, we bet she’s a little bit jealous.

–Tiffany Hsu

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