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, Maro, and Fuku-chan. We wrap up this part of the mook with an interview with Juice=Juice's monkey. I don't normally associate her with being a BeriWota, but Sayubee's always struck me as being a thoughtful young woman, so please enjoy what she has to say.
Juice=Juice Takagi Sayuki
• How did you feel when you found out that Berryz would be entering an indefinite hiatus?
'When I heard about their "Indefinite hiatus", I couldn't believe it, and it took some time even though I understood the words. Even though there are lots and lots more things I'd like to learn from them...... Thinking that, since then, I started to treasure the time rehearsing with Berryz Kobo-san, the time we stand on-stage together. Even though I still can't imagine a Hello! Project without Berryz Kobo-san, I'd like to burn the memories in my mind so that I don't regret it later'
• Where do you think the charms of the group Berryz Kobo lie?
'I'm sure there must have been lots of trying times, and times when they wanted to quit. There was also a change in the number of members, but the 7 members of the current Berryz Kobo-san, the 7 of them continued on this one path. I think that it's amazing to have 7 companions with whom you can talk about stories from 13 years ago. Those bonds make an appearance in their MCs and performances, they truly are a wonderful group.'
• Who is your oshimen in Berryz Kobo?
'Sugaya Risako-san. Ever since Juice=Juice and Berryz Kobo-san did a Naruchika tour, she's given me advice, we've messed around, we've become friends. Even though she's such an amazing person, unpretentiously, she was friendly to me, she's really a kind person. Her power of expression, singing, looks...... the things I've learned from Sugaya-san are endless. I love her'
• What Berryz Kobo song do you particularly like?
'"VERY BEAUTY". Firstly, I love the lyrics. Berryz Kobo-san have this image of having lots of unique songs, but singing this really simple, cute song suddenly changes that image, it really makes my heart skip a beat. I prefer listening to Berryz Kobo-san singing it over myself singing it. I wish we could have sung it together'
• Please tell us about a concert or event where Berryz Kobo left an impression on you
'Naruchika 2013 Autumn Berryz Kobo x Juice=Juice'. Going through that tour, I was able to come upon even more of Berryz Kobo's allure. We got to talk with them, watch them on-stage, stand on-stage with them, there really were lots of things that we felt and we learnt, and I'm sure that there were things that we were able to learn by following Berryz Kobo-san's example. Even while we were rehearsing, Berryz Kobo-san were always with us and we could feel how high-level they were, and when we got to do MCs together during the real performance, it was really cool how Berryz Kobo-san could converse while reading the mood, and I think that since the 7 of them have always been together, they're able to read the mood and know "Who'll speak here" in that way. They're so cool, I'd like Juice=Juice to catch up soon'
• To you, what sort of existence is Berryz Kobo?
'A presence that's close yet distant'. I think they're unreachable. I think that even after 10 years, our current selves won't reach Berryz Kobo-san's performance and power. Depending on the song, the change in the form of their power immediately hits you. They're unreachable, but I now treasure that I could learn by watching them up-close, and I'd like to make even a small part of that my own'
• Is there anything that you learnt from Berryz Kobo or that left an influence on you?
'Even though the way they dance and sing and their heights were all over the place, it's really amazing how the immediately come together where it counts, that burst of power is really something, it always moves me. I'd like it if Juice=Juice could do that too, and be able to bring out our power as a group with a bang!!! Simply said, there isn't anything I can do that is mine, but I learned from them'
• Please tell us about a memory or episode with Berryz Kobo
'This is obviously from "Naruchika", but it made me happier than anything when we kept in contact after Naruchika ended, and got to talk...... I had lots of serious discussions with Shimizu Saki-san, and as well as performance-related matters, I was also taught about a lot of important things as a person, such as how to give greetings'
• Please give a message for Berryz Kobo
'Up to then, I'd always thought on the lines of "Just like the air we breathe, Berryz Kobo will always be around". The sudden announcement gave me a shock, and it hasn't hit me yet. Honestly, I want to watch more and more of Berryz Kobo-san's performances, I'd like to rely on Berryz Kobo-san's presence. But, for that to no longer be the case...... And so, burning the performances of the 7 members of Berryz Kobo-san into our minds, we'll take up the wonderful history of Hello! Project that Berryz Kobo-san have taught us, and picking up the responsibility, we'll do our best'