Just like a lot of the entertainment event industry, the pandemic has also hit the dance copy competition UNIDOL pretty hard. After the cancelled 2020 Summer Edition, people had hopes up for a somehow-smooth Winter Edition. The qualification phases were held throughout November to December with no trouble ahead. One notable event was the withdrawal of Tomboys☆, the five times competition winners. Tomboys☆ has over 20 members performing on stage and it is understandable that COVID-19 cluster concerns may arise in the team.
In January, the state of emergency was declared in the Tokyo Area and its neighboring prefectures, forcing the UNIDOL organizers to move the competition date from February 24th to March 17th. Hearing these news, a few teams understandably chose to withdraw, the pandemic sadly jeopardizing the success of the Winter Edition.
By the end of February, the Miss UNIDOL contest started as planned. The contest aims to vote for the “most kawaii (cutest) girl among the UNIDOL participants”. The votes are usually cast on the same day as the competition, however, as doubts of whether or not the competition would be held increased, the organizers chose to allow online voting on their website and on their official SHOWROOM channel. The Miss UNIDOL contest gathered 19 contestants from every corner of Japan.
On March, 9th, everyone’s fears became true. The UNIDOL organizers announced that the UNIDOL competition would be suspended indefinitely, as the state of emergency was still in order. Nevertheless the suspension did not include the Miss UNIDOL contest.
On March 17th, the five winners’ name were announced :
First Place: Kurage de QanvaS (Kyushu Sangyo University, @kurage_QanvaS)
Runner-up: Akanen de HanaIro HiYori (Aoyama Gakuin University, @akanen_hanayori)
Special prize “UNIDOL”: Honoka de Like (J.F. Oberlin University, @Honokaa_Like)
Special prize “Model Press”: Akanen de HanaIro HiYori (Aoyama Gakuin University, @akanen_hanayori)
Special prize “Miss COLLE”: Myuty de Pichicart (Doshisha University, @myuty_pichicart)
To close the curtain on this 2020-2021 UNIDOL season, the teams were invited to share their competition setlists on UNIDOL’s official Twitter account. Some teams went as far as releasing videos of their covers, a touching gesture showing the girls’ dedication to their passion. Hopefully we will get to see them on stage soon enough!
Thanks to UNIDOL management for the official photos.
Article and translation by Anthony.