Friday, 4 April 2014

Suzuki Airi & Watanabe Mayu Special Conversation [UTB 200th issue, Dec 2010]

{This interview was in commemoration of UTB's 200th issue, at the tail end of 2010. At that time, both girls were already role players in their overarching collectives - H!P for Airi, and the 48 Group for Mayu. Slightly past three years later, they stand near the forefront, looked up to as seniors and as pillars supporting the collective. Still, let's go back and hear what they had to talk about in this rare crossing of the streams.}

The moment they stepped into the photo shoot studio, a sea of chatter erupted amongst the staff ! It started with the the photo shoot staff, of course, and got relayed from person to person to person!! In the midst of what would normally be a tense atmosphere, these 2 were in a relaxed mood and brimming with smiles. Taking the lead as the photo shoot advanced, they were already holding hands ☆ Giving the impression that they had completely become good friends, the conversation between Airi and Mayu begins!!

What did you think when you heard about the decision to have this photo shoot?

Airi: About Mayu-chan, I knew well of her since she's a member of AKB, so I was wondering, 'would be all right for her to have a photo shoot with me?' and I was really nervous. However, I was also looking forward to the day of the photo shoot.

Mayu: Of course I knew about Airi-chan as well, since there are a lot of girls in AKB who like Hello!Pro-san as well, when I heard that I'd be doing a photo shoot with Airi-chan, I was thinking, 'Am I good enough?'

Airi: No, no, that's not...... (laughs)

Mayu: When we started the photo shoot, my heart was pounding (laughs).

Airi: I was just as nervous. Moreover, since we started with shooting for the front cover, the cameraman was instructing us to 'go a bit closer', I was a bit self conscious.

Mayu: But, when we talked about the foods that we like, the bugs that we hate, we got excited!

Airi: That's right. Now how did we end up talking about those......When we saw a huge butterfly fluttering around, we ended up talking about bugs, right?

Mayu: And then, we talked about liking fresh cream.

Airi: That's right. Today's condensed milk cake was super duper delicious☆

What do you feel, what are your impressions when seeing one another in television or on magazines?

Airi: What I always think about...... Her skin is so slippery smooth (laughs). For me, no matter how I say it, I have this dry sensation, so from when this photo shoot was decided, I bought face lotion with hyaluronic acid in it from the convenience store, to prepare myself for this day. Also, there's an impression that she's level-headed. That's what I think after watching things like '24 Jikan Terebi' (24-hour Television).

 Mayu: Airi-chan, she's cute, and good at singing, I think she really is amazing. Inside, I have this impression that she's an honours student and reliable. However, having met her today, I think that she's a playful girl.

 Airi: Ah~. Since I immediately did nothing but weird movements, I guess. Acting like a kappa, or walking all bow-legged (laughs).

 Mayu: Immediately coming out with puns (laughs). When I tried looking you up on Wikipedia, 'loves making puns' was written, and you really made one~, it moved me today (laughs).

 Airi: I often say things like, 'Yabuka ni Hifu wo Yabukareru' (My skin was violated by an aedes mosquito) (laughs). All of the staff-san were sniggering though! My impressions of Mayuyu, it doesn't differ from when I watch her on the television. Kinda like, it's definitely Mayuyu (laughs). Her voice when we're talking normally too,  you'd say her face is just like that, and you'd say she cute just like she is. I was worried at the start, as I'm bad at speaking smoothly (laughs) Even though I don't call her 'Mayuyu', we were able to chat normally in the end.

Mayu: Mayuyu or Mayu-chan, either would be fine, please end up calling me whatever you like. Since even by the members of AKB too, I get called both ☆

In this world, I believe that there are a lot of people who see Hello! Pro and AKB48 as rivals though...... Particularly ℃-ute and AKB48, your formation in 2005, and your indies CD debut in 2006 are similar points. As two of the persons concerned , how were you aware of one another?

Airi: Indeed, we were referred to as rivals, but I thought that they were cute when I saw them on the television, and around me there were a lot of people who liked AKB as well. When I go for karaoke, a lot of times my friends would sing 'Iiwake Maybe' or 'Oogoe Diamond'...... For ℃-ute, in the beginning, Okai Chisato-chan in particular liked them, and she brought AKB's DVD to the dressing room, and everyone watched them. Watching the PVs is a given, and we properly watched up to the making-of (laughs).

Mayu: Eh, is that the case? It makes me really happy ☆ I came to know of you from the time of 'Sakura Chirari'. The way the word ℃-ute was written was mysterious, I thought that it was a cute group. Harugon (Nakagawa Haruka), who was in the same team as I was during that time, and is currently together with me in Watarirouka Hashiritai, brought ℃-ute's live DVD to the dressing room, everyone was saying 'Since this is cute, let's imitate them~' while watching it. Also, 'Tokkaiko Junjou' became a craze among the members! Everyone was imitating the 'Are you ready' of the chorus. Therefore, rather than rivals, they're a presence that we love.

Have you never come in contact through work before this?

Mayu: Previously, there was a time when we appeared at the same event (Yamada Denki Consumer Electronics Fair in Nagoya Dome), didn't we cross each other's paths?

Airi: We crossed each other's path at the dressing room. And, I got ice cream (laughs).

Mayu: Ah, that's right! Since Harugon wanted to meet ℃-ute, she proposed bringing along ice cream to greet them. (laughs) And, since everyone wanted to meet them , I brought along my own ice cream.

I see. I was thinking of looking for some mutual common point between you from here on though......

Airi: We talked about bugs, and there was a common point. When we get bitten by a mosquito, it grows big and spreads out (laughs).

Mayu: Also, we hate cockroaches

Airi: Let's live while ignoring bugs! (Mushi ha MUSHI shite Ikiteikou)

Mayu: She's come up with a pun~ (laughs). Well, what sort of kid were you when you were small?

Airi: I've been singing since I was small. I loved SPEED-san and Aikawa Nanase-san......

Mayu: I like anime, such as 'Bishoujo Sensehi Sailor Moon' or 'OjaMajo Doremi', and I also liked things to do with sentai.

Airi: For animes, I have memories of watching nothing but 'Cutie Honey'...... I also watched 'OjaMajo Doremi'

Mayu: 'Futari wa PreCure'?

Airi: I watched that! But only the beginning, I guess?

Mayu: So you don't know about Max Heart or Splash ☆ Star?

Airi: Nope, I'm not familiar with them......

Mayu: Ah, sorry for being such a fanatic (laughs). Also, what do you do on your days off?

Airi: I probably wouldn't leave the house. Most of the time I end up sleeping, and I'm the type who doesn't go outside if there's no one to drag me out (laughs).

Mayu: Me too! I basically end up sleeping too. As well as being the indoor type, I'm not really that good at where it's packed with people.

Has no one ever mentioned that you two look similar?

Airi: Ah, my friends have mentioned it! Even though nowadays my bangs are cut straight, there was a time ages ago when I parted them, and it was mentioned to me at that time.

Mayu: It was mentioned of me about 2 years ago. At the time, I mostly did twin-tails, but when I put up a ponytail, Kashiwagi Yuki-chan said 'You look like Airi-chan ☆', and she took tons of photos (laughs).

(Laughs). Also, and I mean this in the best way possible, I think that both of you being  'Pro idols' is a common point as well...... I'd love it if the both of you could tell us your definition of 'what you think an idol is!?'

Airi: As I looked up to Speed-san and Morning Musume.-san, I tried for an audition, and thus I entered into this world. Therefore, I also think that I'd like to become an idol that anyone can aspire to be.

Mayu: When I was small, I too grew up watching Morning Musume.-san, and watching them dance and sing lifted my spirits. Therefore, for me too, I would like to aim to be an idol who can bring smiles and energy to people watching me

Finally, is there anything you wish for, like 'if I had the chance, I'd like to do this!'?

Airi: I'd like to go and hang out.

Mayu: Yup. Since just now, both of us mentioned that we're indoor types, should we try doing our best to go to bustling places?

Airi: It won't be scary since there's the 2 of us, right!

Mayu: Yup, please get in touch with me ☆

After the interview ended, the parting scene of them shaking hands was impressive (It was a bit like a handshake event, it was heart-warming). Rather than being rivals, the relationship seemed to be one of mutual respect. In order to get that friendly competition from now onwards, so that UTB continues on to the 250th, 300th issue; we want to be rousing up the idol world

1 comment:

  1. oh I didn't knew about this photoshoot ~<3
    they seem to get well :) that's great, they are both lovely!