Profile:All-girl super group Berryz Kobo is part of Hello! Project and consists of Saki Shimizu, Momoko Tsugunaga, Chinami Tokunaga, Maasa Sudo, Miyabi Natsuyaki, Yurina Kumai, and Risako Sugaya. As of now, they have 8 albums and 28 singles to their name.
On June 8th to 10th of 2012, the girls were invited as guests to New Jersey anime convention, AnimeNext, and performed an energizing concert as well as taking part in several other events!
During that weekend, your fellow h!psters, H.Pom, Ping, and Nizama were given the special opportunity to interview the seven wonderful girls!Q:
With your 8th year anniversary, you've grown a lot as a group. What area do you think you've grown the most in?Risako:
Personally, I was the slowest at remembering the dances, but now that it's been so long, I'm the faste--well, no I'm not the fastest, but I can remember the choreography quickly now.Q:
What do you think about the current "idol sengoku jidai"? And out of all the current idol groups (outside of H!P), who do you take the most interest in?Momoko:
That's right. Recently, there's been a lot of idols emerging from Japan and other countries, and people have been calling it the Idol Sengoku Jidai (The Warring States of Idols). But of course with the world's cutest Momochi in Berryz Kobo, we're aiming to take the top!Q:
It's been a year since you've last been here. What are the impressions of your US fans from last year and this year?Yurina:
Well, I couldn't really feel much of a difference between East coast and West coast fans, but if you were to compare against our Japanese fans, they're very--how do I say it--Japanese? Even though we're the ones who want to sing and communicate with them in English, they're the ones to sing with us in Japanese. And that really really gives us power. And their voices while cheering are a lot higher. So yes, we're very impressed and happy.Q:
What's more exciting : recording a new song or shooting a new pv and why ?Maasa:
Well, the thing is, we have to record the new song first or else we wouldn't have the PV to shoot. We start off with the director telling us how to sing it here and there during the song recording, create something good, and then record the PV. With the PV, we have to make sure our expressions and actions match that of the song. So it's the song plus our own movements that make shooting fun. So I think both are equal for me. Q - Saki:
Now that you are near the top of Hello! Project, what has changed in your duties and in yourself? Do you have any goals for H!P?A:
So far, we've had a lot of senpai, so we would work and grow by watching them from behind. But of course, we've had a bunch of kouhai enter recently as well, so we have to make sure we're good role models for them. Personally, I'm not good at lecturing people by words, so I want to be able to set an example by my actions.Q - Momoko:
Despite being the second eldest in the group, a lot of fans say you look like the youngest. Do you have a secret for still looking so young?
[Note: slight mistranslation when posing the question to Momoko. Eldest got translated to 古い (literally: old/aged/ancient)]A:
What's most important is that no matter how many birthdays I have, my feelings will eternally be those of a 17 year old's. Also, I'm not that old!Q - Chinami:
Please introduce Berryz Koubou in English!A:
Hello! We are...Berryz Kobo! Uh...member...seven. Many member! (laughs) Umm...number one idol group. Yoroshiku ne!Q - Maasa:
Disregarding age, who in Berryz do your consider your older and your younger sister? Are you the type who would spoil younger girls, like your character in Suugaku Joshi Gakuen?A:
Well in the drama, I was given this motherly sort of character who watched over three younger girls. Everyone already thinks of me as a motherly type within the group anyways, but I think I see Risako as the one I baby the most. When we used to do our radio show together, we were this kind of team. So Risako will always be my little sister/baby.Q - Miyabi:
What country would you like to visit for your next overseas concert?A:
I heard there's this country...country?...I think it's a country anyways, named Belize. And I thought it would be cool to hold a live there, like "Berryz in Belize" kind of thing. And it'd be really nice if we could shoot a PV there or do some other events too.Q - Yurina:
You did a cool commercial for Baseball Bear with a blood squirting lemon. Can you tell us any backstage happenings during filming?A:
Yeah, I got asked to do a commercial for a band named Baseball Bear. The looks of the commercial were pretty bizarre: like wearing a school uniform and biting into a lemon. And then this red liquid or blood would come out of the lemon. It's honestly a little scary looking but it really had an impact, image-wise. For shooting, it took a lot of outfit changes and retakes, but I'm really glad to have gained experience from shooting such an impactful commercial.Q - Risako:
You played great in Puyo Puyo Fever in an episode of Music Fighter before. Do you still play any video games in your free time?A:
When it comes to video games, Puyo Puyo Fever is my favorite. It started when my little brother was playing it, and I was free at the time too, so I joined in. I played against a comedian on TV before and won, and I've played a lot outside of that too. But yes, I think I won't lose to anyone in Puyo Puyo Fever. I'm strong!Q:
With all the new members in H!P these last 2 years, are there any particular kouhais you are attached to/are attached to you?A - Risako:
There are times when they're not so familiar with a certain dance, and will come to us and ask, but we actually haven't had much time to really get to know them on a personal level yet.A - Miyabi:
Since many of them joined not long ago, they're still iffy on the choreography and it's really cute. But since there are probably lots of younger girls to come, and with Berryz being the elders now, I want to be able to teach them a lot of different things. Of course they won't grow by only being called cute, so we'll be sure to be strict with them when we need to.Thank you very much for your time!
- June 9, 2012
A big word of thanks to Yaz, Ezra, and Berryz staff for working with us and allowing this opportunity!
[Note: After the interview, we were able to clear up that we didn't mean to call Momoko old, and that it was a mistranslation.
Also, be sure to stay tuned in to this thread as we'll have the interview coming in video form soon!daigong edit: added Berryz Kobo event photos (credit: Up-Front Agency), fixed apostrophes lol