Mirai, you were born in the Japanese city of Ogaki,
but moved to Frýdek-Místek with your Japanese
mother and Czech father at the age of three.
Nowadays, you spend a lot of time in Prague. Where
do you feel the most at home?
I would say that I feel most at home in Frýdek, but if
you make friends in new places, the lifestyle of being
a nomad becomes more bearable. Luckily, Czechia is
a relatively small country, so it almost feels like home
anywhere I go. I am currently working on getting
a pilot’s license for small aircraft, so maybe I can make
my home country even a little more “compact.”
Every year, you host the FM City Fest at
the premises of the former Slezan textile factory.
What made you pick this place? Did the local
government interfere in any way?
We were looking for some place that could house
a couple thousand people and also had some semblance
of infrastructure. Festivals in meadows, for example,
require you to build up your own infrastructure. It still
took a couple years for us to work out the kinks of where
we are now. At the same time, choosing this place has
also somewhat limited our capacity. Everything has its
pros and cons. We wanted the place to have its own
spark. The Slezan textile factory, the former brother
Neumann’s laundromat, is an old industrial brick
building and the tall chimney next to it has become
a symbol, which is visible from many parts of the city.
The local government took the event under its wing,
and of course, we consulted with them first.
Where can we go to see you in the near future?
We are currently preparing for our first Slovakian tour.
Since we managed to sell out the O2 arena in Czechia,
you would think that we would be capable of something
similar in Slovakia, but that could not be further from
the truth. We are attempting to break through in
a completely new market. We are going to be playing
in venues for 500 to 1000 people. The concert halls will
definitely be full, but I cannot be certain whether those
tickets won’t be bought up by Czech fans looking to go
on a little vacation. Nonetheless, we plan to perform in
Slovakia more and more in the upcoming years. After
all, a lot of cities in Slovakia are a shorter drive for us
compared to western Czechia. We are going to be
performing in Žilina, for example, and that is essentially
just a short jump across a mountain range. A place like
Košice though, it is a little more complicated as far as
logistics are concerned.
In fall of this year, you are going on tour again.
As part of your ARENA TOUR 2023 you will go to
Ostrava, Brno, Pardubice and once again to Prague’s
O2 arena. You mentioned that this is going to be
the biggest and most important test of your band to
date. How are you preparing? Are you excited?
Yes, we are preparing to put on a show in Czechia’s largest
hockey stadiums. Ostravar Arena is going to be first on
the 17th of November, followed by Brno, Pardubice and
then O2 Arena in Prague. A total of around 40 000 people.
This is going to be our biggest challenge to date. Right
now, we are in the phase of finalizing the stage props,
80 ǀ POSITIV 1/2023
then we will need to sort out the equipment. Once we
find out that what we came up with for equipment needs
will cost a zillion crowns, we then come up with a smarter
solution that we can squeeze into our budget. In addition,
we are trying to organize guest performances, the final
playlist, ways to move the band forward, and many other
general considerations of how to direct the show. We also
have partners, marketing and a long list of other things to
worry about. I am a bit of a control freak and I like to be
in control of everything, so I go to the meetings I could
probably sit out on and not need to attend. In the future,
that I would like to place more trust in the management
to take care of these items so that I can focus on my main
job, which is performing and recording great songs and
The technicians that you will be touring with
previously went on European tours with Red Hot
Chilli Peppers, Metallica and even took care of
concerts from people like David Guetta. That sounds
When it comes to the sound at our concerts, we
spare no expense to make it a real experience. Not to
mention, they are a group of guys from Ostrava, so we
are investing into the local economy as well.
When it comes to the sound at our
concerts, we spare no expense to make it
a real experience.
We talked about your upcoming concerts, but what
about a new and upcoming album?
In exactly twenty three minutes from now, the guys
from the band will be picking me up and we will
be heading for Berlin to start recording our fourth
album. We like to record outside of home turf, where
we can solely focus on the music. Everything seems
to be sapping time and attention away from writing
and recording, so I just turn off my phone and social
media, and devote those couple days to music alone,
no meetings, no errands.
You participated in the Beskydy Seven marathon,
StarDance, received honors at the Czech Slavík Awards,
studied law… What else would you like to experience?
After I finish getting that pilot license and get a couple
hours under my belt, I want to buy some old airplane,
pimp it out to my desires and then travel the world
with it. If all goes well, that could be as early as next
year, though that is not entirely certain yet. As far as
the band goes, we have big plans for 2024 and 2025,
so I would be glad if all of you would be a part of that.
What is the best thing the Mirai band has given you?
Good question. Probably the combination of work and
fun at the same time. Also, the opportunity to meet
up with a lot of inspirational and interesting people.
Freedom, but sometimes a bit of restraint as well, though
I am thankful that we are able to do what we do.
Mirai, thank you for the interview.