Following on from the interviews with Berryz, we have a small selection of active Hello! members giving their thoughts about Berryz. Last time we had Okai-chan and Maro, and this time we'll hear from known BeriWota and Otomomochi, Morning Musume。´15 leader Fuku-chan!
Morning Musume。´15 Fukumura Mizuki
• How did you feel when you found out that Berryz would be entering an indefinite hiatus?
'They announced it in the summer of 2014, and Berryz Kobo-san's announcement occurred as we were closing in on the graduation Michishige-san whom I love, I ended up thinking "The H!P that Mizuki loves is changing..." I love Berryz Kobo, who chose to call it a hiatus with their fans in mind. Until the 3rd of March, as a fan and as one of their kouhai, I'll give Berryz Kobo-san lots of support'
• Where do you think the charms of the group Berryz Kobo lie?
'I think it's their "voices". Listening to the voices on a Morning Musume。 recording or CD, I have to search for which voice is mine. But for Berryz Kobo-san, you'll know who's who with just one listen. I think that each and every one of them have strong, unique personalities. When they're all together, their singing is powerful yet stable, it's cool!!!'
• Who is your oshimen in Berryz Kobo?
'Tsugunaga Momoko-san! I've always liked Tsugunaga-san from since I was small. I think that her 'Look at me!'-ness hits you with everything she's got! "Gag 100kai bun Aishite Kudasai" is painted in the colour of Momochi, I remember watching it hundreds of times! What I remember the most happened during a handshake event at the serial events for "Koi no Jubaku", Tsugunaga-san patted me on the head! I was really happy and she was super cute. But when I'm watching Berryz Kobo-san, I don't just look at Tsugunaga-san, I look at each and every one of them when it's all of them. The one I love is Tsugunaga-san, but I feel that I like the form of the 7 of them'
• What Berryz Kobo song do you particularly like?
'"Ohiru no Kyukei Jikan." At a concert, they played something like a PV, where the 7 of them did things like have a meal on the rooftop and cleaning up the classroom, I think it would be fun if there was a school like that. That's what the song makes me think about. I love the delightfulness of Berryz Kobo-san, how boisterous they feel.
• Please tell us about a concert or event where Berryz Kobo left an impression on you
'I went to an event at the place that had become the abandoned school for "Jiriri Kiteru", and I begged my mother to buy me uchiwas of Tsugunaga-san and Sugaya-san. I also wanted the Tsugunaga-san spectacles case, but I wasn't wearing spectacles at the time, so there was no natural reason for my mother to buy it for me, so with a meaningless reason, "In the future, I'll definitely wear spectacles!", I asked for it and she bought for me! I still treasure it, even now. I've made an idealised school speech for each of the members of Berryz Kobo-san! Playing the game of deciding who among the 7 of them would find it good and applaud, Sudo-san and Tsugunaga-san gave huge applause!'
• To you, what sort of existence is Berryz Kobo?
'Ever since I was small, the idols in my generation were Berryz Kobo-san and C-ute-san, so I mimicked their hair when I went to school, and since I loved drawing manga, and I'd have the female protagonist have names like "Tokunaga Miyabi-chan" (laughs). Even when I went to bed at night, I'd go to sleep while constantly listening to these mini-discs that my mother had made.Now they've become a group that I can learn from closely, that I can have conversations with, it's such a wonder.'
• Is there anything that you learnt from Berryz Kobo or that left an influence on you?
'Naturally being weird! Without minding about what others think, it's great how all of them want to challenge the things that fit them. Connected to those feelings of "Wanting to produce themselves", they're able to think of setlists that all the fans would enjoy. Sudo-san cut the hair she had always kept grown out, formed bangs, all sorts of changes occurred, it excites the fans! I'd like to try out all sort of challenges too!'
• Please tell us about a memory or episode with Berryz Kobo
'When I went to Berryz Kobo-san's dressing room with a birthday present for Kumai-san, after getting excited with a "Ya-y, Kumaicho, how nice", Tsugunaga-san went "Fuku-chan, thank you for liking Berryz,' it surprised me so much that I cried. I left the dressing room saying "I love you!"'
• Please give a message for Berryz Kobo
'To Berryz Kobo-san, who have always been looking forward since your début. I can't believe that you'll be entering your indefinite hiatus in a bit. Even though you've said that it's your last single, I still think that there'll be a next one. Even though it's not hitting me at all, what I think is that it was a joy to support, to watch Berryz Kobo-san for 11 years. I think that the fans feel the same way. We really look forward to what sort of setlist berryz Kobo-san will do, what sort of outfits you'll wear! Will you end it with "Bye Bye Mata ne"? Or will you pump the place up and smile until the end?? All we can do is look forward to it. Even hereafter, I'll always love you.'