A Risa Niigaki tribute is going to be the title for this next post. Since Niigaki is my favorite member of Morning Musume’s 5th generation, it makes sense for me to write about her. Niigaki would join the group in 2001. But how did she get into the group? Here is the history and background information that led to her eventual selection.
Risa Niigaki Tribute: Part 1
The group that became known as Morning Musume dates its origin back to 1997. At the time, five girls were chosen as part of its first generation. They were Nakazawa Yuko, Kaori Iida, Natsumi Abe, Aya Ishiguro (known as Ishiguro Aya in Japan), and Asuka Fukuda. These girls did so well when performing that they started and st the foundation for future members. The group’s first unofficial single is called Ai no Tane (Seeds of Love). The single sold 50,000 copies in only four days. Thus, Morning Musume was born! The group is one of many Japanese idol groups that have been formed in less than 20 years! The expansion of the Japanese idol market has amazed! AKB48 would be formed eight years later in 2005. That girl group is the most popular idol group in Japan today. They have influenced the formation of other similar groups like SDN48. And then, groups such as C-ute, S/Mileage, and 9nine have been formed as well. Note: the group 9nine has the very cute Uki Satake as a member! Other Hello! Project groups have been formed in recent years as well. One good example of this is the group called v-u-den. That group had three very beautiful members in it! They were Yui Okada, Erika Miyoshi, and Rika Ishikawa. Ishikawa revealed in the summer of 2014 that she was dating a baseball player.
Risa Niigaki Tribute: Part 2
After the debut of the first generation, the second generation was chosen. This generation had Kei Yasuda, Sayaka Ichii, and Mari Yaguchi. The third generation had only one member successfully pass the group auditions. That member was Maki Goto. After Maki Goto came the 4th generation. That generation had Hitomi Yoshizawa, Rika Ishikawa, Ai Kago, and Nozomi Tsuji. Niigaki passed the 5th generation auditions in 2001. So she made her debut with the single Mr. Moonlight Ai no Big Band. Joining Niigaki were Ai Takahashi, Asami Konno, and Makoto Ogawa. Ogawa retired from the entertainment industry in March 2015. Hitomi Yoshizawa would go on to form the group Hangry & Angry in 2008.
Risa Niigaki Tribute: Part 3
Niigaki has also worked as a fashion model. In 2012, this cute pop singer did a photo session for the Hello! Project “umbrella label.” She was seen in a beautiful pink dress! Niigaki released the photo book called Ascension. That was the last one she released as a member of Morning Musume. The photo book has 11 years of footage. The photos range from sexy swimsuit shots to other images. I really think Niigaki still has a beautiful bikini body! She has released six photo books. They are:
- Niigaki Risa
- Happy Girl
- Alo!-Hello Niigaki Risa Photobook -MAHALO- (アロハロ！新垣里沙写真集-MAHALO-)
For those of you that are interested in beauty, check out actress Masami Nagasawa’s Natural Beauty Basic Campaign.
A tribute to Risa Niigaki in photos (note: she has done modeling work like pretty much all of these girls have) for those of you interested in a Japanese gravure idol that is beautiful and sexy at the same time, take a look at Miho Yoshioka!
Risa Niigaki Tribute: Part 4
Since leaving Morning Musume, Niigaki has begun an acting career. On October 1, 2015, she starred in the educational TV drama called Otona e Novel. On October 20, 2015, it was announced that she would be starring in the stage play called Akatsuki no Yona. The play is based on the manga of the same name. Niigaki will be playing the lead role of Yona. The play will run from March 16-21 2016.
Niigaki graduated from Morning Musume in May 2012 after more than ten years. Sayumi Michishige took over as leader of the group. She would be the leader until her graduation in November 2014. Since her graduation, other members have left the group. Riho Sayashi is the most recent graduate of the group. Sayashi graduated on December 31, 2015.
In March 2013, Niigaki attended an event called Forest for Rest: Satoyama e Ikou. This event was started to re-introduce and recognize the importance of the Satoyama Values. It helped to put the people of Japan in touch with nature and this was known as a middle ground between city and rural life. Joining her at the event was Miki Fujimoto. So there we go! This was a tribute to Risa Niigaki! I have done tribute posts for the following Japanese idols:
AND Sayaka Yamamoto! Yamamoto is also one of my favorite idols! Check these posts when you get a chance! Risa Niigaki registered her marriage to actor Yoshikazu Kotani on July 11, 2016.