Episode 24: March News

A little late now, but here’s a roundup of all the big news in Takarazuka recently!

NOTE: Lella mentions that Kurenai Yuzuru said doing Scarlet pimpernel was “hitokakera no yume.” This is a reference to Percy’s big song in the show, “Hitokakera no Yuuki” – “A Piece of Courage.” So Beni was saying this role was like a piece of her dream.

Links to things mentioned:

OG Instagram Live! Picture from Ayanami Keito’s instagram
Saizuki Tsukushi’s insta | Ayanami Keito’s insta | Ouka Rina’s insta | Aotsuki Ren on TakaWiki

Ryouga Haruhi’s blog posts about Costco saran wrap and going to see Grand Hotel

Ayakaze Sakina’s upcoming photobook

The taidan/ohirome chart

Select actresses mentioned:

Manaki Reika / Chapi
Houshou Dai
Karyou Shizuru
Hoshino Anri
Irodori Michiru
Seina Nozomi
Sakihi Miyu
Asaka Manato / Maakun
Misaki Rion / Mirion
Makaze Suzuho / Yurika
Reimi Urara
Hoshikaze Madoka
Kihou Kanata
Nozomi Fuuto / Daimon
Maaya Kiho
Senna Ayase

Shows mentioned:

All for One

Glossary:

Tachimi: Standing-room tickets at the back of the theater

11 thoughts on “Episode 24: March News”

  1. Thank you for another wonderful episode!

    I also strongly feel transfers are imminent, some troupes are way too stacked and some others quite open, especially re: musumeyaku. Hana and Sora have a bunch, Hoshi and especially Yuki, much less.
    Speaking for the troupe I follow the most, Yukigumi, there is only (Maaya Kiho who came over to be the next top aside) Irodori Michiru and then maybe Seina Nozomi and Nonoka Himari, none of whom have a clear-cut position at the moment.
    Himarin never really had notable roles so far. Her biggest was young Don Juan last year (which admittedly got her many favourable reviews), but before that I’m sure she was “that ken2 girl from Daimon’s personal book” to most people. I heard she got to do some nice things in “New Wave -Yuki-” and she just got the shinko lead for Taiyouden, so maybe her star is slowly rising; but currently speaking it is way too soon to tell.
    Ricchan (Seina Nozomi) is very pretty and a lovely girl, but I don’t think she has what it takes to be a top candidate. While she has gotten her fair bit of spotlight, her recent stint with Caleb Hunt felt mostly more like a way to block Kuracchi and Michiru, rather than an actual push with potential. She doesn’t get bad roles for her position, but most of them have been children/ensemble stuff, and imho, she needs a lot of work.
    Michiru is the most prominemt musumeyaku in yukigumi right now. There has been a steady push since she joined, with the shinko Kaoru/Yahiko/”Don Juan”‘s Maria combo last year being the peak of it thus far. She has had significantly smaller roles since “Don Juan” , but I wouldn’t necessarily say she’s fallen off the track just yet. Only time will tell what the “change of regime” has in store for her.

    Arisa Hitomi is one of my favourites and I was sad for the transfer, but it really is better for her. She’s been doing great in Hoshigumi so far, and seems to be very well-received by both the troupe and the fans alike. I do hope she still has a chance!

    Re: Maa/Mirion, I was one of the few going “but why not together 🙁 ” too ::low-fives Carly for sharing my love for Maamiri and trashy idol music::. They are such a strong, perfectly matched combi, it was a shame to not have them taidan together. Even more so since they haven’t really had to be a proper combi on stage since “Elisabeth”. Mirion 120% deserves the solo sayonara show and the solo spotlight, but more than that, I wish she had a great last role to go out with. “Chateau de la Reine” sounds like a blast of a show, but barely the appropriate last role for a sienne of Mirion’s talent and caliber. At least I hope she gets to continue acting and doing great things as an OG too!

    Senna Ayase’s lack of shinko leads is indeed a very rare case. The closest precedents are Ranno Hana (who didn’t have sk leads in name, because tsukigumi didn’t have a top musumeyaku at the time, so it’s more of a technicality) and Dan Rei, who had only one, super last-minute lead in “Asaji ga Yado”, right before getting sent to tsukigumi to be Makoto Tsubasa’s second partner. Before that, she never even got a smaller venue show lead role (which, for a ken7 musumeyaku that made top, is quite unprecedented).
    Other top musumeyaku who never had shinko leads were (as you all correctly mentioned) mostly siennes who got the title very young, and all in the 80’s: Kuroki Hitomi, Miyuki Hanayo and Kanna Miho who became top at ken1-3, Haruka Kurara (who was an otokoyaku until right before she was made Ootori Ran’s partner), and Wakaba Hiromi who is probably the only top musumeyaku to have a shinko otokoyaku top star role in her CV. (She was an otokoyaku until ken6, and a prominent one, apparently. To my knowledge, other top musumeyaku who originally started out as otokoyaku, only got leads in shinjin kouen after the “switch”, if at all).

    Already looking forward to the next episode! <3

  2. Imagine if something drastic happen when the time comes for the next Sora top star and they announce, I don’t know, MiyaRuri is being transfered to Sora for one of those super short, Bun-chan/Kashige style 7 month top star reign. That would shake things up XD.

    (Alas, I’m more concerned about Miya leaving in All For One than Chapi. That small theater show with her quasi-name in the title, Reiko’s transfer to Tsuki…I don’t know, can’t really shake the feeling)

    And, yeah, I was one of the people who’s got kinda shocked with the no-top musumeyaku announcement for Sora? We all thought it was a Yuuri x Madoka “battle” from the moment they announced that National tour thing with their double-lead thing and then, “Bad internet, no top musumeyaku for you!”. I don’t know, maybe they’re feeling that a one show with Maakun wouldn’t do a new top musumeyaku any good, maybe it would burn the poor new girl out, but who knows? Hankyu works in mysterious ways XD

    And last but not least: DAIMON!PHANTOM for the win!

  3. Another fun episode..
    Thank you guys.

    Jen.. if you say, you feel old, I feel reaaaaaaaally old now.
    Like a dead man walking.. ha..ha..

    As for Remi Urara in Soragumi, she is a Ikeda Bank Image Girl, so the company will try to put her as a top musumeyaku as much for even short period.
    But I assume Ma-kun doesn’t want a new partner for her Taidan show. So she can concentrate on her last performance, not to worry about the chemistry with the new partner on the stage.
    Besides my watching Takarazuka for last 46 years (now I feel really a dead man walking (*_*), I don’t recall they put a new musumeyaku partner for the top star’s Taidan production.
    But this is all my assumption, though.

    1. That’s a really good point, Sakiko! The only time it’s happened before is when the top combi only had one show and then they retired together. So maybe Reimi Urara is still under consideration.

  4. Hey gals, thanks for another great podcast. Since I’m a noob fan, I haven’t paid enough attention to the up n comers. I don’t follow a troupe cause I love em all, they’re all special in my opinion.

    I watched a recording of ‘2 headed eagle’ with Misaki Rion n Todoroki Yuu, and damn that was a knock out from both Mirion n Todoroki. Misaki is mad good and I wish her all the best for her career when she leaves. I never thought about Asaka letting her retire first as a way to let her get the spotlight she deserves until you guys mentioned it. It makes total sense, and also Asaka is so kind to not want to hold down Mirion’s career by making her wait till Nov, so that is a pretty cool gesture. It would be hard for Asaka to go on I think but she self sacrificed for Mirion I feel that was very honorable thing for her to do

    I loled so hard at the Makaze story!! Poor thing, that must be so awkward and weird!! I really like Makaze as a performer and as a person, I hope Asaka will teach her every thing she knows, I think Makaze will make an awesome Top Star.

    I do agree Nozomi may have typecast herself. She is mad talented and her voice just melts like butter, I think she’s great but very serious, she needs to lifen up more. It would be interesting to see what she’ll get up to after Sagiri says goodbye

  5. Doumo 🙂
    I like both Urara and Madoka but I hope Urara gets a shot at being top too despite her age ;A;

    Ah, I was so relieved that Daimon did actually make it. I had been rooting for her but someone kept on reminding me about Beni so I was a bit restless until they announced it.

    Speaking of Instagram, when a millenial joins zuka, are they asked to close all their existing SNS? Or do they just set it to private so that only close family and friends can access? I have read somewhere that people found seito’s SNS account and that she posted pics that are not so kiyoku tadashiku utsukushiku….but they didn’t screencap it so I don’t know if it’s true. I’m glad they didn’t too! But it did make me wonder about this.

    Btw, I bet you guys have already planned the topics for upcoming episodes but can I suggest an episode on shinko?

    1. I heard they are asked to close their SNS accounts, although I imagine some of them just make them private so they don’t lose their content… not 100% sure on that. These lives have made me really wish they were allowed to use social media while active! It would be so much easier to get to know the young actresses.

      We can ad shinkos to our topic list!

  6. Great episode as always !
    It was interesting to hear your thoughts about the latest news.
    Hankyu is so mysterious sometimes …
    Keep up the good work girls 😀

  7. I think this is a re-listen for me as well, but again, fun to re-listen knowing what we know now 😉 Despite the doomsday-saying, I’m glad there weren’t many hard-hitting retirements announced with Maa-kun. (She’s taking all musumeyaku with her! What a lady-killer ;P)

    That being said, it seems like there weren’t the expected lower-ken transfers either! Soragumi is gaining Kiki, which I think was a big surprise, but other than that they’re just losing one young musumeyaku and gaining another one. It sounds like there will still be a battle among the lower ranks… Or there will be more transfers in December… ;)))

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