Being a H!P fan means that you've got to be on guard at all times as at any given moment Tsunku will drop something on us which can splatter or at least shake up our day. While member graduations seem to always come when you least expect them, for the most part the end of a group or unit is usually signified by a gradual slowing of releases or activity giving fans time to prepare for such news. Biyuuden have been anything but inactive recently so this news catches me quite off guard and I'm very shocked to learn of this. The unit has been improving so much lately that I just didn't anticipate anything like this to occur and now the only question is, in just what capacity will Rikachan, Yuichan, & Erikachan be involved in H!P after the break up? Rikachan is probably the most safe from falling into inactivity as she still has Gatas/Ongaku Gatas as well as pb releases steadily being released but what will become of Yuichan & Erikachan? Rikachan was never destined to become a solo artist and therefore Biyuuden was created to be a vehicle for her appeal and fan base but have Yuichan & Erikachan truly developed enough to embark on solo efforts? This announcement seems premature to me but perhaps the UFA producers have plans already in place as they no doubt have a much better insight into their talents and appeal than a fan looking in from the outside. I personally have never imagined either of them to be in the process of grooming for a solo career and Biyuuden is really a single dimensioned unit which is set on a particular fan base, and that being said isn't meant as a bad thing at all. It's just the direction that was taken when this unit was created and they really ran with it! And just when all of the pieces seem to be in place and the group is firing on all cylinders…we get this announcement! :O On the other hand perhaps they've done all that they were set on to accomplish and it's just time to move on and expand their individual horizons. I do have little doubt that any of the 3 members are completely satisfied with being kept within Biyuuden's singular approach and appeal…which translates into somewhat of a box when you really consider that they could be doing so much more and head into multiple artistic directions if they so chose to do so with UFA's support of course. And while members such as Yasuda Kei and Inaba Atsuka have really fallen victim to obscurity in the H!P family I can only hope that the same fate doesn't befall any of these soon to be former members of Biyuuden. Saburo just sent me this official announcement and it's been kindly translated in entirety by Fenrir of JPH!P. Comments by each member as well as tsunku are included. Here's the article:
Translation via Fenrir @JPH!P:
A notice from Hello! Project
Thank you for continually supporting Hello! Project.
There is an annoucement for everyone today.
After the last day of their concert tour in June of this year, Viyuden will be disbanding.
In all the activites done in the past 3 and half years, the three of them have grown each day and were able to build up the next stage within them. After discussing with producer, Tsunku, and with the timing of Okada Yui turning 20, Viyuden activities will end and each will go on to the next step on their own.
Even after Viyuden activities will end, the three of them will continue to do their best on their own as Hello!
Thank you for always supporting us!
This is Tsunku.
Well then, this is an announcement about the 3 girl singing group, Viyuden, that I have personally produced.
I would like to report to all of you that viyuden, consisting of Ishikawa Rika, Miyoshi Erika, and Okada Yui, will end their activities after the final performance of their concert tour in June of this year.
(He first wanted to annouce this to the fans personally, so the annoucement was given during the performance at
Yokohama Arena on January 26th.)
Since debuting from Sept. 23, 2004, the girls have done all kinds of entertainment activities.
I think the three of them have cleared what they should have done as a unit.
Starting from last year, we have discussed about what direction the three should take.
In order to build up their talents efficiently, I have thought about utilizing solo activities and the timing of Okada Yui becoming an adult, and decided to end their unit activities. Because the three of them still have a long way to go, I ask of you fans to please continue supporting the girls.
January 26, 2008
Ishikawa: After the end of our concert tour in June, it has been decided that we will end our activities as Viyuden. Until the last day of the tour in June and without ruining Viyuden's name, beautifully and bravely, I will go out as if throwing a ball with all my power. Thank you for your support everyone.
Miyoshi: I think we have grown thanks to all the activities done in the past 3 and half years as Viyuden. I want to use what we have learned hereafter on our own solo activities. My sadness and anticipation are half and half, but please support us from here on after.
Okada: After Viyuden disbands, as members of Hello! Project, I plan to go on with new feelings. We are really proud to be able to do activities as a group and to be able to meet all the fans. Thank you everyone!!
In happier news Risakochan aka earth's most adorable is on record pace to becoming H!P's new shashinshuu princess! Perhaps one day she'll catch current shashinshuu favorites Aichan & Rikachan! February 6th is the release date of her 3rd pb titled "Ring3~rinrinrin!~"…makes me think of Minimoni…and this will probably spark once again thoughts on inequality in H!P when it comes to shashinshuu releases. I've already spoken a bit on this topic so while I try to avoid redundancy here I'll just say that H!P is a business and they have do present what they believe will be profitable for the agency as a whole which is in their best interest and ours if they are to remain for us fans for years to come.