2008, 2009-2011, 2013, 2015
High-King was a Japanese idol group within Hello! Project. The group was created to promote Morning Musume's rendition of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, titled Cinderella the Musical. The group is mostly made up of the leaders of the main Hello! Project groups: Morning Musume's leader, Berryz Koubou's captain, and ℃-ute's leader. The group also featured Hello Pro Egg member Maeda Yuuka, and Morning Musume member Tanaka Reina, the latter also being the former leader of Aa!.
The group was created for the sole purpose of promotion and support, making it short-lived, albeit reasonably successful. Their debut single, C\C (Cinderella\Complex), was a relative success, having a peak ranking of #6 on the Oricon Charts. The single was released on June 11.
Producer Tsunku said the members were chosen for their ability to dance and belt out R&B numbers, adding, "As they're girls they should really be 'High Queen' but it didn't have enough punch." He said their debut had a faster beat than anything he'd produced up to that point.
In 2009, several of the dormant units were revived. Tanpopo, Minimoni, Petitmoni, ZYX, Aa!, and v-u-den all returned with new line-ups. High-King also returned from hiatus, but with its original members.
After the Hello! Project 2011 winter tour, the group became inactive as Takahashi Ai graduated from Morning Musume and Hello! Project in September, and Maeda Yuuka graduated from S/mileage and Hello! Project in December.
Takahashi Ai made a guest appearance during Hello! Project Tanjou 15 Shuunen Kinen Live 2013 Fuyu ~Bravo!~, and she performed "C\C (Cinderella\Complex)" with the remaining High-King members.
High-King's last two members Shimizu Saki and Yajima Maimi performed "Kioku no Meiro" together during the Berryz Koubou Matsuri. This would be the group's last performance following Shimizu's (and the rest of Berryz Koubou's) graduation from Hello! Project on March 3.
- Takahashi Ai (高橋愛) (Graduated September 30, 2011)
- Tanaka Reina (田中れいな; Former Leader) (Graduated May 21, 2013)
- Shimizu Saki (清水佐紀) (Graduated March 3, 2015)
- Yajima Maimi (矢島舞美)
- Maeda Yuuka (前田憂佳) (Graduated December 31, 2011)
- [2008.07.11] C\C (Cinderella\Complex)
- [2008.12.10] Petit Best 9 (#12 C\C (Cinderella\Complex))
- [2008.12.10] Hello! Project Special Unit Mega Best (#16 C\C (Cinderella\Complex))
- [2009.07.15] Chanpuru 1 ~Happy Marriage Song Cover Shuu~ (#1 DIAMONDS)
- [2009.12.02] Petit Best 10 (#10 DESTINY LOVE)
- One of the few groups to not have a leader based on seniority.
- Their sound is said to have an R&B feel.