Name: 戸田鈴音 (Toda Rinne)
Stage name: りんね (Rinne)
Date of birth: February 6th, 1981
Place of birth: Hokkaido, Japan
Date of debut: April 27th, 1999 (Member #16)
Graduated: August 13th, 2002
Rinne was a Japanese singer and actress.
She started her career as a member of the group Country Musume, from which she graduated in 2002 to become a stage actress.
Rinne Toda signed up for an audition held by Tsunku and Yoshitake Tanaka (Country Musume’s original producer). They wanted to create a sister group to Morning Musume, but instead of being the next door girls, they would be country girls with rural values.
The audition process was aired on a television program called ASAYAN. Nine girls went through voice and dance lessons at a farm in Hokkaido, and three girls ended up being chosen, Rinne being one of them. The group would be named Country Musume, and was made up by Toda, Hiromi Yanagihara and Azusa Kobayashi.
After working on their debut single, they were able to successfully record and complete their debut single and a promotional video. However, tragedy struck the group soon after their work seemed to be finished. On July 16th, 1999, Hiromi died in an automobile accident, just days before their first single was set for release.
The plans for Country Musume was to continue as a duo, but no more than a month after the single release, Azusa decided to leave the group due to psychological stress. After that, Country Musume is left with only one member, Toda.
Rinne released two solo singles as Country Musume before Asami Kimura joined the group. Together they released Country Musume’s fourth single.
The group went through big changes over the next two years, and on August 2nd, 2002, Rinne made an announcement to leave the group. Her last duty as a member of Country Musume was the monthly fan club meeting on the 13th, when she graduated from the group and Hello! Project.
The agency’s press release said the graduation would give her an opportunity to start a new career, stage acting, which she always wanted to try. Her producer, Tanaka, has been working on stage plays and musicals based on the theme of farming and agriculture. He was inspired by Maki Goto’s graduation from Morning Musume, and decided to start a new project because “I feel like brand new ambition is starting to form inside me”, says Yoshitake. After a series of hardships, such as a member’s accidental death, Yoshitake wanted to give Rinne a new opportunity to boost her career, so he pitched the idea to her. She agreed to it with enthusiasm, saying, “I’d love to try a musical based on farming.”
In another statement, Rinne had said “To be honest, I am a little surprised to be told that I am graduating. But I am determined to move forward to my new goal. I’m feeling optimistic.”
She participated in the musical «Sougen no Hito» the following year. The play is based on a poem by famous enka singer Hibari Misora, and tells of a first love story of robust youths living in postwar Japan. Rinne plays a small role as Tamako Ohshiro, the daughter of a real estate agent.
After this, it is uncertain what happened. But a few years later, newspapers reported that Toda had gotten married and resided in Sapporo. She is now working in her father's inn in Okinawa.