© Yukari Ichijo / SHUEISHA

11th Manga Division Excellence Award


Story manga [Japan]



ASAMI Shio, brought up in a wealthy family whose mother is a prominent opera singer. However, the bankruptcy of her father’s business forced her to give up becoming an opera singer. MIDORIKAWA Moe entrapped Shio and claimed a victory in an opera contest. Depicts a competition of two heroines putting their pride on the line.

Reason for Award

A dramatic and elegantly drawn story; ICHIJO Yukari is truly a queen of women’s manga. When she started this series, I was surprised by the title, PridePride is an English word that means ‘high regard, vanity, or self-esteem’. I was already interested in how she would be dealing with this complicated subject. In the story, the cause of the heroine, Shio’s growth as a vocalist and as a person is wonderfully told; she overcomes the difficulties that befall her without breaking down, confronting them directly, retaining her dignity and pride. We can easily perceive the extraordinary passion of the writer towards this work. The opera travels across the world and so the story takes place in diverse locales; the writer has traveled to the USA, Germany, or Italy to collect information for her story. Although she is suffering from inflammation of a tendon in her left arm and hand, which is her dominant hand, she never compromises her work or her pride as a manga artist! Her graceful and precise expression is so impressive that it makes turning each page a new pleasure.