Japan’s much-awaited annual television event in New Year’s Eve is finally happening tonight! The 69th NHK Kohaku Uta Gassen (NHK Red & White Song Battle) is broadcasting live throughout Japan and Around the World, featuring some of Japan’s biggest music acts.

This will be the final edition of Kohaku during the Heisei Era, due to the abdication of Emperor Akihito, which is set to happen in Spring 2019.

The New Year’s Eve special has been running on Japan’s public broadcaster since the Showa Period in 1951, and it’s seventh decade will happen the same year Crown Prince Naruhito takes over the throne next year.


For this year, Suzu Hirose and Sho Sakurai will be the leaders of Red and White team respectively, with comedian Teruyoshi Uchimura and NHK news anchor Maho Kuwako serving as the mediators for the second year in a row.

Suzu Hirose is a Japanese actress and model, who is known for portraying “Chihaya Ayase” in the live-action film adaptation of Chihayafuru, “Harika Tsujisawa” in the television drama Anone, and voiced the character “Nazuna Oikawa” in the anime movie Fireworks, Should We See It from the Side or the Bottom?. She is also the younger sister of actress Alice Hirose.

Sho Sakurai is well-known as a part of the Japanese boy band Arashi, as well as an actor, singer, rapper, and newscaster. He has portrayed the roles of “Yuta Takemoto” in the live-action film adaptation of Honey and Clover, and “Kageyama” in the television drama Nazotoki wa Dinner no Ato de.


Love Live! Sunshine!! idol group Aqours and Touken Ranbu musical stage play casts will be performing in a special segment that focused on popular Japanese acts around the world.

The popular idol group AKB48 will also be performing the hit song “Koisuru Fortune Cookie”, together with their Bangkok-based sister group BNK48.

Several performers will also make their debut on the Kohaku stage, including the Johnny’s idol group King and Prince and Yoshiki feat. Hyde.


White Team will be composed of (in order of performance):

  1. Sandaime J Soul Brothers (7th)
  2. Hiromi Go (31st)
  3. Keisuke Yamauchi (4th)
  4. Hey! Say! JUMP! (2nd)
  5. Suchmos (Debut)
  6. Junretsu (Debut)
  7. Sexy Zone (6th)
  8. Yoshiki feat. Hyde (Debut)
  9. Hiroshi Itsuki (48th)
  10. Da Pump (6th)
  11. Masaharu Fukuyama (11th)
  12. King & Prince (Debut)
  13. Kanjani8 (7th)
  14. Hiroshi Miyama (4th)
  15. Sekai no Owari (5th)
  16. Exile (12th)
  17. Daichi Miura (2nd)
  18. Kiyoshi Hikawa (19th)
  19. Gen Hoshino (4th)
  20. Kenshi Yonezu (Debut)
  21. Yuzu (9th)
  22. Arashi (10th)

Red Team will be composed of (in order of performance):

  1. Fuyumi Sakamoto (30th)
  2. Little Glee Monster (2nd)
  3. Daoko (Debut)
  4. Midori Oka (2nd)
  5. Yoshimi Tendo (23rd)
  6. Aimyon (Debut)
  7. Kaori Mizumori (16th)
  8. Yoshiki feat. Sarah Brightman
  9. Aya Shimazu (5th)
  10. Ikimonogakari (10th)
  11. AKB48 (11th)
  12. Perfume (11th)
  13. Keyakizaka46 (3rd)
  14. Kana Nishino (9th)
  15. Nogizaka46 (4th)
  16. Twice (2nd)
  17. Superfly (3rd)
  18. Aiko (13th)
  19. Seiko Matsuda (22nd)
  20. Yumi Matsutoya (3rd)
  21. Misia (3rd)
  22. Sayuri Ishikawa (41st)


69th NHK Kohaku Uta Gasen will air Tonight from 06:15pm to 10:45pm Philippine time, LIVE on NHK World Premium. Japanese audio only.

NHK World Premium is available on SKYcable (Channel 131 Metro Manila, CAMANAVA, Rizal, Cavite and Laguna, Channel 806 Cebu, Davao and Baguio) and in select cable providers nationwide.