Well, it was anime day once again with my friend so for the audio part of our day, we got to listen to the "Girls und Panzer Herbst Musikfest 2015" which was the recording of a special concert featuring the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra playing passages from the soundtrack of the anime "Girls und Panzer"（ガールズ&パンツァー）. It was then and there that I decided that I would have to promote the show into a category of its own on "Kayo Kyoku Plus", the second anime that I've treated in this manner after "Shirokuma Cafe"（しろくまカフェ）.
Of course, when the show is mentioned, a lot of folks talk about the most moe version of "Katyusha" that was portrayed, and that is of course fine. However, I've also remembered "Girls und Panzer" for that brief tune used as punishment for the members of the Anko Team. Indeed, that was "Anko Ondo" (Anglerfish Folk Song) as sung by Sayaka Sasaki（佐咲紗花）. One of the big surprises was that I had already written one anison article about her for her rendition of the opening theme for the motorcycle-based anime "Bakuon!!"（ばくおん!!）, not knowing that it was indeed the same singer who had been behind "Ah-a-ah-anh, ah-a-ah-anh..." for the notorious ondo. I had assumed it was performed by a much older enka singer!
Surprise No. 2 was that I had also assumed that "Anko Ondo" was a long-established traditional folk song from the real town of Oarai, Ibaraki Prefecture where "Girls und Panzer" was set. Nope, wrong there, too. It was created specifically for the show by Reiko Yoshida（吉田玲子）on lyrics and Tsutomu Mizushima（水島努）, the director of the show, on the melody. And apparently, it did become a thing. Looking at those 3D women on the truck, I think their odds of getting married have actually increased (inside joke)!
Looking at the J-Wiki article for "Girls und Panzer", I found out that the Oarai Anko Festival has been held annually since the premiere of the anime, and it actually attracted its highest number of visitors (110,000) last year when it was held on November 15th 2015. I'm fairly confident that the dance was performed a number of times, although I wonder what the citizenry must think at times as they realize that their town has become popular due to a cartoon featuring high school girls and their tanks.
A pleasant travelogue of the 2015 Oarai Anko Festival by uploader yoneyasu.
|Yeah, that was my reaction, too,|
when I discovered how popular the song became.
by Florian Hardwig