NHK's 'Kohaku Uta Gassen' receives highest TV rating of last 10 years - 44.5%


The 64th annual NHK "Kohaku Uta Gassen" (Red and White Singing Contest) on New Year's Eve received a record-breaking television rating of 44.5%, the highest ever in the last 10 years.

According to video researchers, the music variety program's ratings surpassed the TBS drama "Hanazawa Naoki" which received 42.2% by 2.3 points.

Sports Nippon reported that the show drew in a large viewership with various performances, including members of the hit TV program "Ama-chan," and veteran singer Saburo Kitajima's 50th and final appearance.

From 7:15 p.m. during the first half of the program, the show garnered a rating of 36.9%, which was up 3.7 points over the previous year. The second half of the program received the highest rating of the last 10 years at 44.5%.

© Japan Today

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

Login to comment

Two quick points. A lot of people like to bash Kohaku, but I don't really understand why, It is a sappy song contest, like much of the stuff that is on TV most of the time, so people tune in because they are used to it. The second thing is, these days with this kind of looking back to the future, and a little bit of a nationalist feeling creeping into society, is this a way to show your love of country. I could be wrong, but I feel there is that attitude among some people.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

? A total waste of time..

-9 ( +3 / -12 )


I watch Kohaku every year and I was disappointed by this year's show. What used to be a forum for Japan to present their best musical talent is slowly degrading into one of those senseless variety shows. I was actually embarrassed watching that Yuru-chara having a nervous breakdown on screen. I can understand a few short cameos by Kumamon, given his sudden popularity, but... what does that have to do with music? And there was one group (GMT something?) who couldn't even carry a tune. WTF...

1 ( +7 / -6 )

@JoeLarabell.: The GMT6 thing was from the Amachan drama, they're not a real group

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I wouldn't call this a contest if the Men's team wins by a landslide every year. Most audience members at the hall are women and TV viewers who vote tend to be women. They need to do mix men and women teams.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I ever watched it in Hawaii... while sharing a box of New Years osechi-ryori and sake... a little hokey and all the songs and many of the bands sound the same... the old guy riding the dragon in the Hobbit was pretty tricky and AKB48 could actually work in America with pre teen age audience ... it is what it is... and it is all good.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

B-O-R-I-N-G! But honestly, New Year's Eve TV shows are about equally boring in every country.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

NHK should insist that the singers stop the lip-synching stuff. If there is a band in the background playing music or if the group themselves provide their own music ... okay. But to see a bunch of people dance and hop around with no backup music ... it looks ridiculous. Guess if these massive group performers try singing live ... it would be a disaster for the sound technicians trying to bring in all the sounds at the right time.

Did enjoy the way NHK handled the Ama-chan TV serial series. They seemed to wrap up the drama series by having the stars perform on stage ... as if they were actually doing this for the folks back home in Fukushima Prefecture. If you followed the series on TV on a daily basis for the six months it ran ... it was well done with Kohaku Uta Gassen being the grand finale.

Also, the night before, NHK ran a two-hour special in which it was explained how the music was made for the Ama-chan series. That was extremely interesting ... except that it began at midnight and ran well into my sleeping time. But I managed to stay awake ... mainly because the music was so good ... as were the musicians and the way they handled their many old musical instruments. Well done NHK ... !!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

A talentless squeakfest. Hootenanny it ain't.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Kohaku Uta Gassen seems to be a Japanese traditional TV show for many years. Some people like it very much and some don't. I did not wartch it because I don't like it. But I don't complain about such a thing. Intead I watched some movies from DVD rental shop, Every year.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I tend to prefer this programming:

"Downtown ohmisoka special: Zettai ni waratte wa ikenai spy 24 ji".

Kohaku has become too much like variety. The Okamura(99) Special also used to be fun.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Say what you may, the fact that Kitajima Saburo has appeared on the program fifty times says something for his (and the show's) longevity! I always liked "Sabu-chan's" big hit "Matsuri".

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I wouldn't call this a contest if the Men's team wins by a landslide every year.

Indeed. I thought the men stunk it up this year with Miwa Akihiro being the worst thing I have ever seen. The women, on the other hand, did well. You had AKB48 doing Heavy Rotation, Perfume doing Magic of Love, and the great, wonderful, and lovely Sayuri Ishikawa performing Tsugaru Kaikyo. How can you beat that?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think an issue with Kohaku Uta Gassen is that while it's a respected institution, it feels old and stale by 2014 standards. Why do you think shows on competing Japanese TV networks are taking away a lot of the younger viewers?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

B-O-R-I-N-G! But honestly, New Year's Eve TV shows are about equally boring in every country.

You Don't know that is for sure in my country

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Funny the foreigners seem to want to be more Japanese than the Japanese! THey try really hard a singing and dressing cracks me up!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites