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Hello! Project Wiki

Iida Kaori (飯田圭織) is a Japanese pop singer, actress, and TV-personality under UP-FRONT CREATE. She is a former idol under Hello! Project as a founding member of Morning Musume, which she also became the second-ever leader of. She was also a member of the Morning Musume sub-group Tanpopo. Later, she was also a part of the reunion groups Dream Morning Musume and Morning Musume 20th

As a soloist her combined CD sales exceed 37,000 copies in Japan alone. Iida's highest selling single is "Aegekai ni Dakarete".


Iida Kaori, July 2016

Iida Kaori, 2013

Iida Kaori, January 2012

Iida Kaori, April 2011

Iida Kaori, 2010

Iida Kaori, 2009

Iida Kaori, 2007

Iida Kaori, 2005

Iida Kaori, December 2004

Iida Kaori, January 2004

Iida Kaori, November 2003

Iida Kaori, 2002

Iida Kaori, 1999/2000

Iida Kaori, 1999

Early Life[]

Iida Kaori was born on August 8, 1981 in Muroran, Hokkaido Prefecture.


On July 7, 1996 Iida participated in the ASAYAN audition Komu-ro Garçons (ASAYAN Idol Group Audition 96) in Sapporo going through to the small room audition. She sang Namie Amuro's "Body Feels EXIT". She didn't go through to the to the studio examination and was disqualified.


On June 21, 1997, Iida participated in an audition held in Sapporo called Sharam Q Josei Rock Vocalist Audition.

On July 29, Iida (along with 10 other people) had made it to the second stage of the audition, and was sent to training camp to practice her singing and dancing skills.

On July 31, they performed on stage in front of an audience, dancing as a group doing a choreography they had been practicing.

On August 3, Iida had made it to the final stage and got to sing on stage in the ASAYAN studio. She lost to Heike Michiyo.

On August 20, Iida, along with Nakazawa Yuko, Ishiguro Aya, Abe Natsumi, and Fukuda Asuka, had been invited back to the ASAYAN studio. They had a meeting with Sharam Q and a producer asking them if they wanted to debut as a group on the condition of selling 50.000 copies of a single within five days.

On September 7, Tsunku named the group Morning Musume, and they started voice training, shoot the CD cover for their indies single Ai no Tane, recorded the song, recorded and released the PV before embarking on the task in November.The quintet accomplished that task on November 30, after just 4 days.[1][2]

In December, Morning Musume started recording three songs, where one of them would be released as their debut single in January. Iida was singing the lead vocals on Morning Coffee, but mid-recording Tsunku changed his mind and chose Abe Natsumi for lead vocals instead.


On January 28, 1998, Morning Musume released their major debut single, Morning Coffee.

In 1998, Tsunku placed Iida into sub-group Tanpopo with Ishiguro Aya and 2nd generation Morning Musume member Yaguchi Mari. They specialized in singing slower, more mature songs. Together they made four singles and one album. After Ishiguro graduated from Morning Musume and Tanpopo in January 2000, Iida and Yaguchi performed Tanpopo songs as a duet until Tsunku placed 4th generation Morning Musume members Kago Ai and Ishikawa Rika into the sub-group. Tanpopo's style was also given a revamping, with songs being more upbeat and pop-ish, but nonetheless still slower than Morning Musume. In this formation, Tanpopo released 3 more singles, a compilation album, and a compilation DVD.

In March 2000, Iida was faced with a manager challenge on the TV show "Idol wo Sagase!". She met up with enka singer Itsuki Hiroshi and got to be his manager for one day. She worked with the stage crew, and also functioned as a personal assistant. [3]

In 2000, Hello! Project's first shuffle units were created in March and Iida was made a member of the punk-rock themed group, Aoiro 7.

In 2000, there were several Hello! Project related TV-shows led by Morning Musume. One of them was the show Idol wo Sagase, which was a show to promote new artists added to the H!P rooster. Around this time, Iida had said that her dream was to be a manager. On an episode of Idol wo Sagase, she became the manager of famous enka artist Itsuki Hiroshi, and she was able to make it a success. Following this management, it was suggested she would be the manager of Maeda Yuki. To make Maeda a TV regular, Iida Kaori arranged for her to attend another H!P show, Hello! Morning. And thanks to Iida, from April 2000, Maeda became a new member of H!P as a soloist.

After Morning Musume's then-leader, Nakazawa Yuko, graduated in the spring 2001, Iida took on the role as the group's leader.

In July 2001, Hello! Project's annual shuffle units debuted and Iida was made a member of 10nin Matsuri.

In 2001 and 2002, Iida released one photobook (Kaori KAORI Kaori) and two essay books; "Kokoro no Sketch Book" and "Lion no Marujan".


From January 10 to January 16, Iida displayed her art and colouring at a gallery in Ueno.[4] It was part of her tour which ran from January to AUgust in different cities throughout Japan.[5]

In July, Tanpopo, along with other Morning Musume sub-groups Petitmoni and Minimoni, experienced changes in their membership; partly due to graduating Morning Musume members and partly to showcase the newer members. As a result, Iida graduated from Tanpopo along with Yaguchi Mari and Kago Ai.

Hello! Project's 2002 shuffle units debuted in July and Iida was made a member of Odoru♡11.

Hello! Project released a series of albums entitled "Doyou Pops." They are albums in which selected members of Hello! Project sing famous childrens’ songs as well as new ones. Iida drew the CD cover of all the releases. She has also drew the cover of her first two album releases, and the artwork of Maeda Yuki’s Sarasara no Kawa.


Hello! Project's 2003 shuffle units debuted in July and Iida was made a member of 11WATER

This year, Iida began pursuing a solo career. She released two albums outside of Hello! Project in which she sang covers of French, Greek, and Italian songs (in their respective languages). She also had two singles in Japanese, released in advance of her impending graduation from Morning Musume—though still set in a Mediterranean-esque style; many Western fans of Morning Musume and Hello! Project have described the style of Iida's solo material as "Euro-enka". In Morning Musume, Iida mostly sang harmony with a few solo lines. Her signature song in Morning Musume is "Yume no Naka", from the group's first album.

In September, Morning Musume was "split" into 2 sub-groups, and Iida was made leader of Morning Musume Otome Gumi.


Iida started 2004 by releasing a photobook and a DVD in collaboration with Wink's Aida Shoko, called "Aegekai". These releases was followed by her debut single, which hit the shelves in February. She also released a second single in July. As opposed to her first albums which were sung in French, Greek or Italian, these singles were sung in Japanese

In May, it was announced that Iida would be graduating from Morning Musume. She would be graduating during the 2005 spring tour.[6]

There was only one annual shuffle unit formed in December 2004, the H.P. All Stars, and it was comprised of all the then-current talents of Hello! Project. Iida was the only member of Hello! Project to have participated in all shuffle units since the tradition started.

On December 29, Iida released her third album, Avenir ~Mirai~, this time within Hello! Project and in Japanese.


In 2005, Iida started hosting her own radio show. It was called Chichuukai Sound Stroll.

On January 30, Iida graduated from Morning Musume to further pursue her solo career. Yaguchi Mari took over her role as Morning Musume's leader upon Iida's graduation. At the time, her tenure of over 7 years was the longest of any Morning Musume member.

In June, Iida Kaori was made a member of the shuffle unit Puripuri Pink.

On December 21, Iida released Plein d'Amour ~Ai ga Ippai~, her fourth album. This album featured songs in Japanese and many European cover songs in their original languages. This was her first album to be released since she graduated from Morning Musume.


2006 was a quiet year for Iida, where she mostly performed at H!P concerts and at fan club events. One of the most promoted events was "Otona no Nouryousai Fan club tour 2006″, a collaboration fan club tour with Maeda Yuki, which was released on the DVD Hello! Days 7.


In early 2007, Iida was chosen alongside Abe Natsumi, Goto Maki, Niigaki Risa and Kusumi Koharu to be a member of Morning Musume Tanjou 10nen Kinentai, a unit created to celebrate Morning Musume's 10th anniversary. Their first single, "Bokura ga Ikiru MY ASIA", was released on January 24.


Iida had announced she was pregnant and getting married to Kenji. He used to be in the group 7HOUSE, a band which was managed by Tsunku. Iida started her maternity leave, and gave birth to a baby boy on January 22nd, 2008. In late November, ida announced through her fan club that her son had died on July 27, 2008 from renal failure.


After the tragic death of her first son, she stated that in his memory, she would continue her career. She returned to the concert stage at the Hello! Project 2009 Winter Elder Club Kouen ~Thank you for your LOVE!~ tour, her first performance in one year and four months. She also performed at the Hello! Project 2009 Winter Kettei! Hello☆Pro Award '09 ~Elder Club Sotsugyou Kinen Special~ concert on February 1, in which she commemorated her graduation from Hello! Project along with 21 other Elder Club members.[7]

Beginning in April, she joined M-line club.[8]


In September, an event for Morning Musume's 1st generation members was announced to take place on January 13 and November 20. The members were set to give a small performance and give fans a chance to interact with them at a small venue and listen to them sing many of the songs they sang when they first joined Morning Musume.[9]

Also in September, she joined the new unit Afternoon Musume with seven other OG members to promote Georgia coffee drinks.[10]

On December 23, Iida held a Christmas special live, titled Kaori Iida Christmas Live 2010 Ce Soir,tu es mon Pére Noël à moi ~Konya wa Anata ga Santa Claus~.[11]


On January 27, Iida announced on her blog that she would be holding two small live events in February. She said that she would be performing love songs at Vinoteca Stage and they will be love themed for Valentine’s Day. The event dates would be held on February 8 and on February 14.

On January 28, it was announced that Iida was part of the OG member group Dream Morning Musume and that they would be releasing the groups first album, called Dorimusu ①, on April 20.


On October 1, 2013, she was transferred to UP-FRONT CREATE.

On July 20, 2016, Iida released her fifth solo album and her first release since 2005, titled ONDAS.

In 2017, the unit Morning Musume 20th was formed to celebrate Morning Musume's 20th anniversary. The unit was formed by the five original members, including Iida, and the fourteen members of Morning Musume '17.[12]


In January, it was announced that Iida would hold an event called Iida Kaori FC Event, her first in three years.

On June 19, Iida, along with Yasuda Kei and Tsuji Nozomi, attended an online event called "Mou Sugu Papa no Hi ~Papa to Mama no Iiwake!! Dousoukai Special~" (もうすぐパパの日!~パパとママのいいわけ!!同窓会スペシャル!~). It was streamed live on YouTube[13]. It is tied up to the release of Tsunku's new childrens' book "Nee, Mama? Boku no Onegai!".[14]

On December 1, Iida posted on her official instagram that she would attend the event Theatre Story Time ~Oyako de Miru Ehon no Sekai~ on January 10, 2021 as a guest reader. It is an event where children's favorite picture books are expressed in theater, live music, dance, and storytelling.[15] [16]


On July 2, Iida appeared alongside Yasuda Kei and Ishiguro Aya on TBS 爆笑!ターンテーブル2時間SP (Bakushou! Turntable 2-jikan SP). [17]

Personal Life[]

On January 9, 2018, Iida announced that her father, who was being medically treated for an illness for the past four years, had suddenly passed away at age 60 at the end of 2017.[18]

On July 6, 2007, Iida's agency announced that she was ten weeks pregnant and getting married to Kenji (full name Nakagawa Kenji), a former member of the disbanded rock band 7HOUSE, which was produced by Tsunku.[19] Her marriage was registered the next day. Iida went on a maternity leave after the last Morning Musume Tanjou 10nen Kinentai Concert Tour 2007 Natsu ~Thank You My Dearest~ concert on September 1.

On February 3, 2008, Iida released a statement to her fanclub that she had given birth to a baby boy on January 22 at 10:30 am.[20] Tragically, it was announced on November 28 that her son had died on July 27 from renal failure. He was hospitalized immediately after being born due to kidney problems, and Iida spent her time going to and from the hospital to visit him. But in April, he was released from the hospital, and she began spending her days looking after him at home.[21]

On December 25, 2012, Iida announced on her blog that she was pregnant with her second child. Iida reported, "I’ve entered my stable period and I’m due next spring! Day after day, I wasn’t feeling very well… but now, I’m very healthy and recently, I feel small movements in my stomach. I love our child and I’m looking forward to its everyday growth." She continued, "It will become lively from now on, but please continue to support me."[22] Her son was born on May 14, 2013, healthy and weighing 2.9kg.[23]

On May 1, 2017, Iida announced that she was pregnant with her third child and would give birth in the fall.[24] Her first daughter was born that September 19.[25]


  • Hobbies: Drawing
  • Special skills: Communicating, making puns
  • Favorite color: Red
  • Favorite flowers: Roses, tulips
  • Favorite season: Summer
  • Favorite words: LOVE & PEACE
  • Favorite food: Oysters, scallions, cream bread
  • Disliked food: Fried tofu, bacon

  • Discography[]

    Main article: Iida Kaori/Discography

    Solo Songs


    Main article: Iida Kaori/Publications


    • [2002.05.02] Kaori KAORI Kaori (かおりKAORI圭織)
    • [2004.01.28] The Agean: Shoko Aida & Kaori Iida (エーゲ海―相田翔子&飯田圭織)
    • Hello! Project Digital Books Vol.027 Nakazawa Yuko, Iida Kaori & Abe Natsumi Vol. 2
    • [2005.03.16] Hello! Project 2005 Winter All-Stars Dairanbu ~A HAPPY NEW POWER! Iida Kaori Sotsugyo Special~ (オールスターズ大乱舞~飯田圭織卒業スペシャル~)


    • [2002] Lion no Maru-Jan (ライオンのマルジャン) (with Kamata Toshi)




    Morning Cop ~Daite HOLD ON ME!~ DVD.jpgPinch Runner.jpg250px-Koinu Dan no Monogatari Cover.jpgGoju no To.jpgKoisuru Bentou Danshi.jpg



    • [2011] Pink no Bulldog ~Utau WAN WAN~ (as Kororo)

    TV Programs[]

    • [1997-2002] ASAYAN
    • [1999-2002] Idol wo Sagase
    • [2000] Morning Musume no Heso
    • [2000] Friday Night wa Onegai! Morning (フライデーナイトはお願い!モーニング)
    • [2000-2005] Hello! Morning
    • [2002] Bishoujo Nikki II
    • [2004] Futarigoto (二人ゴト)
    • [2010] Majo-tachi no 22-ji (魔女たちの22時)
    • [2011] Ii Tabi - Yume Kibun (いい旅・夢気分)
    • [2011] U-gata TV (U型テレビ)

    TV Dramas[]

    Taiyou musume to umi front (1).jpgKochira Dai San Shakaibu.jpgMikeneko Holmes no Hanzaigaku Kouza.jpgNew drama.jpgHoncho Azumi.jpg


    • [2011.03.15-21] SAMURAI Banka ~Boushuu Bakumastuhen~ (SAMURAI挽歌~房州幕末編~)
    • [2011.08.31-09.11] Torimakashi produce "Shimokita hakoniwa HERATs" (トリマカシproduce「下北箱庭HERATs」)


    • [2000] Glico Mousse Pocky
    • [2003] Fuku Musume Jouzou "Fuku Musume Kaori no Sake"
    • [2003] FT Shiseido "Suibun Hair Pack Shampoo"
    • [2010] Nihon Coca Cola "Georgia Gohoubi Break" (with Afternoon Musume)
    • [2016] Ribbon Napolin

    Music Video[]

    • Southern All Stars - Tengoku on the Beach (天国オン・ザ・ビーチ)


    • [2005.04.30] Hello! Project on FLETS (17th Hello! Project Chat) (第7回・ハロプロビデオチャット、ハロー!プロジェクト on フレッツ)
    • [2005.07.21] Hello! Project on FLETS (19th Hello! Project Chat) (第19回・ハロプロビデオチャット、ハロー!プロジェクト on フレッツ)


    • [2001.04-2003.03] Iida Kaori - Konya mo Koushin Chuu! (飯田圭織・今夜も交信中!)
    • [2005.04-] Chichuukai Sound Stroll (地中海 Sound Stroll) (one year break from March 2008 to April 2009)


    • As a member of Morning Musume, Iida had the most singles under her belt with a grand total of 26 (including “Ai no Tane”) until 5th Generation members Takahashi Ai and Niigaki Risa surpassed this in 2009.
    • Iida is an experienced acoustic guitar player.
    • Her nickname, “Johnson,” comes from the hosts of Utaban constantly referring to her as such. The origin comes from the February 16, 1999 episode where Ishibashi Takaaki decided to associate each member with a baseball player (so he could remember them easier), and Iida supposedly resembled Davey Johnson. Iida’s nickname is the only one that stuck.
    • She is the only member of Hello! Project to have been in a shuffle unit each year, and each year she has been in the largest group, with the exception of 2005, in which she was in Puripuri Pink which tied Elegies for largest, both with four members.
    • She attended Hokkaido Sapporo Tousei High School and later transferred to Tokyo Municipal Yoyogi High School, where she attended alongside SPEED member Uehara Takako.
    • She loves to draw and has published a few children’s books.
    • Her long hair was a trademark of her image, but she cut it short not long after her graduation from Morning Musume. Since then, she has grown it out long again.
    • Fans and members have remarked that she must be “communicating with aliens,” due to her frequent blank and spacey expressions.
    • She is the one who came up with the nickname “Ayaya” for Matsuura Aya.
    • She was Maeda Yuki's manager on Idol wo Sagase shortly before Maeda joined Hello! Project.
    • Prior to joining Morning Musume, she appeared in a battery commercial back in Sapporo. She was even a finalist in Komuro Tetsuya's auditions held by ASAYAN at the same time.[27]
    • She once said in an interview that her dream was to be a happy mother.
    • She considers herself her rival.
    • She was the last one to leave Morning Musume in her generation.
    • She was the youngest member to become leader of Morning Musume until 9th leader Fukumura Mizuki.
    • At the Dream Morning Musume Concert Tour 2011 Haru no Mai, she was the only one to change her hairstyle during the concert, appearing at the encore with a welded tail on her left shoulder, while she had her hair down her back for the entire concert up until that point.
    • She is the sixth former Morning Musume member to only graduate from Morning Musume and not Hello! Project. The first being Nakazawa Yuko, the second being Goto Maki, the third being Yasuda Kei, the fourth being Abe Natsumi, and the fifth being Tsuji Nozomi and Kago Ai.
    • She and Junjun are the tallest members of Morning Musume.
    • She and Abe Natsumi were born in the same hospital 2 days apart from each other.
    • She is known for keeping her hair long throughout her Morning Musume career and also for "spacing out" frequently.
    • She illustrated the front cover of "Os Avrio ~Ai wa Matte Kurenai~", "Paradinome ~Koi ni Mi wo Yudanete~", the Douyou Pops albums, as well as the back cover of "Sarasara no Kawa".

    Total Sales Count[]

    Year Year Sales Total Sales
    2003 12,593 12,593
    2004 22,253 34,846
    2005 2,504 37,350

    Honorary Titles[]

    Honorary Titles
    Preceded by
    Ishiguro Aya
    Oldest Member of Tanpopo
    1999 – 2002
    Succeeded by
    Shibata Ayumi
    Preceded by
    Nakazawa Yuko
    Leader of Morning Musume
    2001 – 2005
    Succeeded by
    Yaguchi Mari
    Preceded by
    Youngest leader of Morning Musume
    2001 – 2003
    Succeeded by
    Fukumura Mizuki
    Preceded by
    Yasuda Kei
    Oldest Member of Morning Musume
    2003 – 2005
    Succeeded by
    Yaguchi Mari
    Preceded by
    Leader of Morning Musume Otome Gumi
    2003 – 2004
    Succeeded by
    Preceded by
    Longest serving member of Morning Musume
    2005 – 2009
    Succeeded by
    Takahashi Ai and Niigaki Risa


    1. "モーニング娘。" (in Japanese). ASAYAN. 1997-09-14.
    2. "モーニング娘。'14『結成17年目★再評価のワケとは? 2014年はさらなる“勝負”へ』" (in Japanese). ORICON NEWS. 2014-01-29.
    3. THe episode is available on the DVD "Idol wo Sagase! Collection Vol.1 ~Hello! Project Members Sou Shutsuen!~"[1]
    4. Hello! Morning Episode 91 (aired January 13, 2002)
    5. Footage available on the DVD "Idol wo Sagase! History 3 ~Hello! Project Members Sou Shutsuen!~"[2]
    6. Tsunku, Iida Kaori, Ishikawa Rika. "モーニング娘。に関してつんく♂及び飯田圭織・石川梨華より皆様へメッセージが届きました。" (in Japanese). Hello! Project. 2004-05.
    7. "ハロプロよ永遠なれ!なっち、あややら感涙の卒業ライブ" (in Japanese). natalie. 2009-02-03.
    8. "HOME." (in Japanese). M-line club official site. 2009-04-05. (Archived)
    9. http://www.up-fc.jp/m-line/news_Info.php?id=1301
    10. "娘。OGがジョージアCMで新ユニット「アフタヌーン娘δ」" (in Japanese). natalie. 2010-09-07.
    11. http://blog.oricon.co.jp/iikaori/archive/803/0
    12. "モーニング娘。オリジナル&現役メンバーのコラボシングル「愛の種(20th Anniversary Ver.)」配信限定でリリース!" (in Japanese). Hello! Project. 2017-11-01.
    13. [3]YouTube
    14. Tsunku Official Blog
    15. https://www.instagram.com/p/CIPZi25nSgJ/
    16. https://www.city.adachi.tokyo.jp/bunka/ibennto0110.html
    17. https://www.instagram.com/p/CQx3RbgHKY2/
    18. "父。" (in Japanese). Iida Kaori Official Blog. 2018-01-09.
    19. "[飯田圭織] 妊娠3ヶ月、元7HOUSEケンジと結婚へ" (in Japanese). natalie. 2007-07-06.
    20. "元モー娘。飯田圭織が男児を出産!「喜びと感動に溢れ、涙が止まりませんでした」" (in Japanese). eltha. 2008-02-03.
    21. "元モー娘。飯田圭織、長男が6カ月で死去 腎臓疾患で闘病…朝に様子が急変" (in Japanese). Daily Sports online. 2008-11-29.
    22. "元モー娘。飯田圭織が第2子妊娠 来春出産予定「毎日の成長がとても楽しみ」" (in Japanese). eltra. 2012-12-25.
    23. "元モー娘。飯田が第2子男児出産「幸せいっぱい」 " (in Japanese). ORICON NEWS. 2013-05-14.
    24. "ご報告。" (in Japanese). Iida Kaori Official Blog. 2017-05-01.
    25. "ご報告。" (in Japanese). Iida Kaori Official Blog. 2017-09-19.
    26. [4]Official site
    27. Weekly Shonen Magazine 1998 No. 26

    External Links[]