HATSUNE MIKU: WHOSE VOICE, WHOSE BODY?

UDC 784.9:004.934

Adriana Sabo

Faculty of Music, University of Arts
Department of Musicology
Belgrade, Serbia

Authors’s contact information: adrianasabo259@gmail.com

INSAM Journal of Contemporary Music, Art and Technology, Issue 2, 2019

Main Theme of the Issue: Artificial Intelligence in Music, Arts and Theory

Publisher: INSAM Institute for Contemporary Artistic Music, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Section: THE MAIN THEME

Abstract: This paper focuses on certain aspects of the Hatsune Miku phenomenon, a highly popular Vocaloid character from Japan. Hatsune Miku began her “life” as a software for vocal synthesis released by Crypton Future Media Inc., and has, since her first “birthday”, become a virtual pop star. Despite being a fictional character, Miku takes on many of the traits a human has. She exists in a realm between human and artificial, mass media and personal space, between real and fantastic. This paper will discuss some basic information about Hatsune Miku and her large fan base, the issues of gender performativity and materiality of the body and voice, as well as the euphoric response of fans known as moe.

Keywords: Hatsune Miku, Vocaloid, moe, gender performativity, voice synthesis, materiality

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ISSN 2637 – 1898
On the cover: Devine Lu Linvega / NASA, The Puppyslug Nebula, courtesy of NASA and Google DeepDream
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