, born , is a Japanese actress and pop singer/songwriter born on June 10, 1977 in Tokyo, Japan. She is noted for the laid-back and relaxing style in her music unlike many Japanese pop artists that have heavier and stronger beats.
- Zodiac: Gemini
- Bloodtype: A
- Height: 165 centimeters (5 ft 5 in)
- Interests: Watching movies and stage plays
- Talents: Acting, singing, songwriting, piano and various musical instruments
- Favorite Artist: Matsuda Seiko
She was born into a traditional Buyō
house, and her Buyō name is Kōka Matsumoto
. Her father is Matsumoto Koshiro IX, kabuki
actor and head of the buyo house; her uncle is Nakamura Kichiemon II; her older brother is Ichikawa Zengoro VII; her sister, six years her elder is Kiyo Matsumoto. Her mother's name is Noriko Matsumoto. She selected her last name as “Matsu” to honor her parents. In one interview, she notes that she and her two brothers are relatively close to her mother. Her highest education is Asia University
, which she did not graduate.
Takako's debut in a theater was when she was sixteen years old, in Ninjo Hanashi Bun Nana Motoyu (Emotions Inscribed in Seven Hair-tying Paper Cords) at Tokyo Kabuki-za
in 1993. Her first lead role in television is NHK
Drama Hana no Ran (War of Roses) in 1994. Afterwards, she increased in succession the number of leadrole appearances in theater and television drama, becoming preeminent as a young actress.
Moreover, because Shirayuri Gakuen, the high school Matsu enrolled in, strictly prohibited entertainment industry, she transferred to Horietsu High School citing obstruction to her work. At that time, Tsuyoshi Domoto of Kinki Kids, two years her younger, was at the school and remarks, “Matsu was excellent”.
In drama Long Vacation, which she played a lead role in 1996 following matriculating to college, she became popular as “the woman who dumped Kimutaku (Takuya Kimura of SMAP)”. Since the drama was a major hit, she began to establish in full-scale her position as an actress. In the same year, as the youngest ever at the age of 19, she hosted Kōhaku Uta Gassen, making 1996 a year of rapid progress for her. She is also well-known for acting with Takuya Kimura in another drama in the same period, Love Generation, which Matsu Takako acts as the female lead-role in.
In 1997, she made her debut as a songwriter and singer, expanding her activity beyond the acting realm. She has worked with many different producers, but in her third album, Sakura no Ame, Itsuka, she is noted for working on every song (either composing the melody or lyrics) on the album becoming her most successful album recorded with Universal Music up to date. As of now, she has released nineteen singles and ten albums (of which, seven are original studio albums), achieving success as a singer also. In other works, she published through Asahi Shinbun Publishers Matsu no Hitorigoto (Matsu Talks to Herself), a photo essay book.
Many of her lead roles in television dramas are in FujiTV (FNN) and Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS).
Toki no Fune, released September 2004, was composed by the Japanese singer Akeboshi. It's very similar to his song A nine days' wonder, the song was released after the Toki no Fune single. Apart from the lyrics and a few small changes in the melody, A nine days' wonder is almost like an English cover of Toki no Fune. The single also contains a cover of Akeboshi's White reply previously recorded on her sixth album, harvest songs.
In late 2004, Takako was told that she had won the Best Actress of the Year by her manager, she was so happy and said to have remarked "I am fortunate to have been born a Japanese". Her manager later said, "She normally don’t show so much emotions for an award that I was taken aback."
In July 2006, Matsu and Kimura starred in a special one night edition of Hero. While a remake of this drama has been refused for years, some believed that recent surge of white collar crimes and arrests such as that of Livedoor president Takafumi Horie had inspired the need for a special production.
In October 2006, Matsu was in a weekly drama for the first time in over three years titled "Yakusha Damashii" for FNN alongside 73-year old actor Makoto Fujita, a family friend. While Fujita was quite excited at his first work with Matsu, she stated earlier that she was quite attracted by his performance ability.
In May 2007, Matsu kicked off her third concert tour to commemorate her tenth year as a singer. In her Tokyo stop on June 21st, she reflected that although it has been a decade, it is not appropriate for her to compare against other artists who have done nothing but music in the same time period. She also performed the keyboard to the song "A Piece of Life" in a duet with a violinist. In releasing her latest album, "I Cherish" earlier in the year, the song "Ashita Haru ga Kitara" was redone to combine Matsu's voice as a 20 year old with her current one. From fans who attended the concerts, some famous people were there including singer/songwriter Mariya Takeuchi and actress Eriko Sato.
- According to Apple Daily, she paid about $800,000 in income taxes in 2004.
- In an interview on July 2006 for Sankei Sports, she implied if it were not for the intimidating and harsh experience of her piano teacher, she may have become a professional pianist.
- She is also said to be one of the most famous heavy smokers within the Japanese entertainment industry. As a result, she is believed to be the source of criticism by Yomiuri Giants and New York Yankee athlete Hideki Matsui. (Of late she is said to have quit smoking successfully.)
- After breaking up with a 42 year old guitarist, her third publicized relationship, she is believed to be now dating 33 year old actor Yoo Ooizumi. But recently she and Sahashi Yoshiyuki (46) patched back and their marriage was announced on Dec. 28, 2007.
- Many of her jobs were acting jobs, and she has not worked as a swimsuit model a single time. In fact, when idol Otoha cried because she was too embarrassed to wear a swimsuit, Otoha’s staff apparently stated, “The only idol who does not need to wear a swimsuit is Takako Matsu.”
- Her song "WIND SONG" was used as the theme to the anime movie Jungle Emperor Leo.
- She attended the same high school and had a class with singer Ayumi Hamasaki according to ayuready? episode 20.
- Tokyo Hiyori (Tokyo Weather); FNN production, Toho distributed; Mizutani
- April Story (1998); Rockwell Eyes; Uzuki Hino
- The Hidden Blade (2004) aka Kakushiken Oni no tsume; Matsutake; Kie
- The Uchoten Hotel (2006); Hana Takemoto
- Brave Story (2006); Voice
- Tokyo Tower (Apr 2007)
- ''Hero the movie (Sep 2007)
Notable Television Dramas
- Hana no Ran (War of Roses, 1994 NHK)
- Musashi (1995 NHK)
- Long Vacation (1996 FNN)-Ryoko Okusawa
- Hideyoshi (1996 NHK)-Yododono (the second wife of Hideyoshi)
- Konna Watashi ni Dare ga Shita (Who did This to Someone like Me, 1996 FNN)
- Ryoma is going (1997 TBS)-Sanako Chiba
- Boku ga Boku de Aru Tame ni (For I to be Myself, 1997 FNN)
- Koto no Renka (Love Song of the Old Capital, 1997 TBS)
- Hitotsu Yane no Shita 2 (Under One Roof, 1997 FNN)
- Love Generation (1997 FNN)
- Shuntoo (Spring Light, 1997 NHK)
- Jinbē (1998 Fuji TV)
- Kai (Oar, 1999 NHK), Kiwa Tomita
- Konya wa Eigyootyuu (Open Tonight, 1999 NTV)
- Omiai Kekkon (2000 FNN) - Setsuko Nakatani
- HERO (2001 FNN)-Maiko Amamiya
- Chūshingura 1/47(the story of the Forty-seven ronin) 1/47(2001 FNN)-Aguri
- Akarui Hoo e Akarui Hoo e (Towards the Brighter Side, Towards the Brighter Side 2001 TBS)
- Tokyo Story (27 Hour TV Special Drama, 2002 FNN)
- Itsumo Futari De (Always the Two of Us, 2003 FNN) - Mizuho Tanimachi
- Hiroshima August 6, 1945, 2005 TBS
- HERO (special edition ) July 2006
- Yakusha Damashi! (Actor Spirit, October 17, 2006 FNN)
- Ninjo Hanashi Bun Nana Motoyu (Emotions Inscribed in Seven Hair-tying Paper Cords, Kabukiza, 1993)
- Koiki na Yuure, Ajisaru (Ajisaru, a Stylish Ghost, Shinbashi Enbujyoo, 1994)
- Taki no Shiraito, Jyunsaihan (Jyunsaihan, the White Thread in the Waterfall, Shinbashi Enbujyoo, 1994)
- The Man of La Mancha (Aoyama Theater 1995, 1997, 1999, Meitetsu Theater 1997, 2005 Hiten Theater 1999, Hakataza 2002, Imperial Theater 2002, 2005)
- Hamlet (Ginza Cezon Theater 1995, 1998, etc)
- Tengai no Hana (Shinbashi Enbujyoo, 1999)
- Szechuan no Zennin (Virtuous Man of Szechuan, New National Theater 1999, Akasaka ACT Theater 2001)
- Okepi (Aoyama Theater 2000)
- Voyage ~ Funajyoo no Syanikusai ~ (Voyage, the Carnival aboard; Theater Cocoon 2000)
- Natsu Hoteru (Summer Hotel, Parco Theater 2001)
- Arashigaoka (Shinbashi Enbujyoo 2002)
- Mozart! (2002)
- NODA MAP Oil (Theater Cocoon 2003, Kintetsu Theater 2003)
- Ohatsu (Shinbashi Enbujyoo 2004)
- Roningai (City of Ronin, Aoyama Theater 2004)
- Miss Saigon (Imperial Theater 2004)
- Cossack no Hakuboku no Wa (Cossack’s Ring of Chalk, Setagaya Public Theater, 2005)
- NODA MAP Crime and Punishment (Theater Cocoon 2005-6, Theater Brava! 2005-6)
- Metal Macbeth (Matsumoto Performing Arts Centre, Aoyama Theatre, Osaka Kosei Nenkin Kaikan 2006)
- Kinokuniya Engekishoo (Kinokuniya Theater Acting Award)
- Erandole (??) Shoo (Erandole Awards)- Rookie Award, 1997
- 22nd Media Film Awards- Best Rookie Award, 1997
- 12th Japan Golden Disc Awards, The Best New Artist of the Year Award, 1997
- 1997 Japan’s New Heroine, first place
- 34th Golden Arrow Awards, Broadcast Rookie Award and Best Rookie Award, 1997
- 21st Matsuo Entertainment Awards- Rookie Award, 2000
- Education, Culture and Arts Minister Rookie Award in theater acting division, 2000
- 10th Hashida Award television division, 2002
- Best Actress of the Year, 2004
Current and Past Television Commercial Contracts
- Toshiba, Reizooko/Kawaribanko (Refrigerator/Replacetor)
- Shiseido , Whitetier
- Yamazaki Baking Co., Ltd
- Loat Pharmaceutical, Dristan, etc
- Coca-Cola , Marotya Kotya no Ko (Marontea - Essence of Western Tea)
- Mitsubishi UFJ Securities (starting May 31, 2006)
- Suntory Beer
- 1st Choice (Canine Food)
- (March 21, 1997); #8, 16 weeks, 431,540 copies
- I STAND ALONE (May 21, 1997); #7, 8 weeks, 182,730 copies
- WIND SONG (December 8, 1999); #30, 5 weeks, 37,670 copies
- (November 21, 1997); #22, nine weeks, 77,070 copies
- (March 25, 1998); #9, 8 weeks, 96,340 copies
- (May 27, 1998); #26, 4 weeks, 44,050 copies
- Stay with me (September 4, 1998); #20, 10 weeks, 95,720
- (September 22, 1999); #8, 10 weeks, 97,490 copies
- (November 17, 1999); #25, 2 weeks, 16,540 copies
- (February 9, 2000); #19, 10 weeks, 87,920 copies
- (October 25, 2000); #25, 3 weeks, 20,680 copies
- (March 14, 2001); #16, 8 weeks, 63,180 copies
- (October 24, 2001); #23, 3 weeks, 23,890 copies
- Clover (June 26, 2002); #28, 2 weeks, 11,040 copies
- (November 13, 2002); #23, 5 weeks, 14,197 copies
- (July 23, 2003); #16, 8 weeks, 27,134 copies
- (September 1, 2004); #5, 10 weeks, 61,471 copies
- (April 6, 2005); #24, 4 weeks, 9,336 copies
- (March 22, 2006); 24, 7 weeks, 14,000 copies
- Minna Hitori (みんなひとり), November 29, 2006; #10, 2 weeks, 41,000 copies
- Futari no Murasaki Tokyo / Kimokusei & Tokyo Jenne (Takako Matsu)(from Kinmokusei's single Futari no Murasaki Tokyo)
- Matsu no Hitorigoto (Asahi Shimbum Press)
- Haiku, Mainichi Daily, July 8, 2007
- "As I Discovered a New Myself in this Album, I Wish If New Listeners Find me" (Japanese), MSN, April 26, 2006, retrieved July 14, 2006
- "In-depth on an Unprecedented Collaboration with Sukima Switch" (Japanese), "Oricon", March 22, 2006, retrieved July 14, 2006
- "Natural and Certain Feeling" (Japanese), "Oricon", April 6, 2005, retrieved July 14, 2006