Mana is a Japanese musician and fashion designer, best known for his role as leader and guitarist of the visual kei rock band Malice Mizer. His clothing label, Moi-même-Moitié, helped popularize Japan's Gothic Lolita fashion movement. Mana is currently working on his solo project Moi dix Mois.
Mana was born on March 19 in Hiroshima. At an early age, he was introduced to classical music by his parents, who were both music teachers. Mana started making music when he was in high school, inspired by Mötley Crüe. His first known band was the punk group Girl'e, active around 1989–1990, which under the name Serina he played guitar for. He then played bass for Matenrou (摩天楼?, "Skyscraper"), active 1990–1992. After leaving Matenrou in April 1992, Mana and guitarist Közi founded Malice Mizer in August. Mana was the band's lead guitarist, chief songwriter, choreographer and overall artistic director. He also founded his own indie music label, Midi:Nette, on which most of Malice Mizer's work was released. After Malice Mizer went on an indefinite hiatus in 2001, Mana founded his solo project, Moi dix Mois. He composes all of the music, writes the lyrics, produces, directs and designs the members' stage costumes. In 1999, Mana created his own clothing label, Moi-même-Moitié, which features two lines of designs named "Elegant Gothic Lolita" and "Elegant Gothic Aristocrat". He regularly appears in the scene's top publication, the Gothic & Lolita Bible, modeling his own designs and giving updates on his various other projects. In 2002, Mana signed the electronic visual kei duo Schwarz Stein to Midi:Nette and went on to produce for them. Despite their growing success, Schwarz Stein disbanded in March 2004, and Mana has since been looking for new bands to sign and produce. In 2004, Mana started to branch out internationally by opening his fan club to overseas members (a rarity amongst Japanese musicians) and setting up international distribution channels for his music and fashion. He played his first concerts with Moi dix Mois outside Japan in March 2005 in Munich, Germany and Paris, France. During which he was interviewed and featured on the cover of European music magazines, such as the German goth magazine Orkus. At the end of 2007 Moi dix Mois returned to Europe, performing in France (a DVD of the concert was released on January 30, 2008) and Germany, Finland, Sweden, Spain and Italy. In 2012, Moi dix Mois announced their first Latin America tour titled Tetsugaku no kakera - Chapter Six ～ Latin América Tour . The band planned to visit Brasil, Chile, Argentina and Mexico. Later, the tour was canceled. Besides focusing on Moi dix Mois and his fashion label, Mana is also currently producing solo vocalist and cellist Kanon Wakeshima, who debuted in May 2008 on Sony Defstar Records. Mana has rarely spoken in public. In his filmed interviews, he whispers into the ear of a band member or confidante, who then relates his words back to the interviewer. He has also been known to simply look at the camera as subtitles appear, as well as using Yes/No cards and expressing himself in mime. He has, however, spoken on a few occasions. At a 1996 Malice Mizer interview on the TV show Hot Wave, he apparently accidentally replied with his name and his position in the band when introduced on the show. Throughout the rest of the interview, Mana whispered in Gackt's ear.