Seiyuu Digest #63 – Koutaro Nishiyama

Koutaro Nishiyama rose from an unknown talent to one of 81 Produce’s most active talents when it comes to music and variety projects.

Koutaro Nishiyama

KANJI: 西山宏太朗

BORN: October 11, 1991

OCCUPATION: seiyuu, singer, actor, radio personality

HEIGHT: 177cm

Koutaro Nishiyama was born on October 11, 1991 in Kanagawa, Japan.

Currently part of 81 Produce’s incredibly talented 90s generation of seiyuu, Nishiyama is starting to be a loved name in the industry.

Since his 6th year in elementary school, Nishiyama wanted to use his voice something that, as he entered high school was suggested to him by a friend, to try his luck at being a seiyuu.

That was when Nishiyama entered NHK’s nationwide high school broadcast competition however, he did not win the competition.

81 Produce 3rd audition 2009

In 2009, Nishiyama entered 81 Produce’s audition. He participated in the 3rd audition, got a special award, and was one of the aspiring seiyuu to pass the audition and join 81’s seiyuu school to prepare for his debut.

He made his debut as a seiyuu under 81 Produce in 2011 and is still signed to the talent agency.


Although many people would expect Nishiyama to be a prolific seiyuu when it comes to voicing characters in anime, truth is that he is a seiyuu with few credits, even fewer if we count leading roles.

2012 – 2014

Breaking away from Random character B syndrome

Nishiyama made his debut as a seiyuu in 2012 with random roles in Accel World, Kokoro Connect, Sankarea and Beyblade: Shogun Steel.

2013 followed and with it came minor roles in anime such as The Severing Crime Edge, Danchi Tomoo, Hayate the Combat Butler and Pretty Rhythm: Rainbow Live.

Starting from 2014, Nishiyama started to be cast in big anime productions.

Kazuhito Narita in Haikyuu!!

Although a supporting character in the popular sports anime series, Haikyuu!!, Kazuhito Narita is one of Nishiyama’s first roles with a decent amount of exposure.

Kazuhito Narita is a 2nd-year student and player for Karasuno High. The character is featured in the 2nd season and sequel movies.

Tooru Iwashimizu

Still in the same year, he voiced Tooru Iwashimizu in the 2nd season of the popular sports anime, FREE!. He would go on to reprise his role in the movies Free! Movie 2: Timeless Medley – Yakusoku (2017)  and Free! -Take Your Marks- (2017).

Nishiyama voiced background and or minor characters for anime such as Other anime he voiced characters during this period of time include:

  • Nourin (2014),
  • PSYCHO-PASS 2 (2014),
  • Mofu☆Mofu (2014),
  • Francesca (2014),
  • D-Frag! (2014),
  • Ao Haru Ride (2014).

2015 – 2016

First leading roles

It took Nishiyama 4 years before he got his very first leading role in anime. He was starting to showcase his versatility and range and the opportunity finally appeared in 2015.

Atsushi Kinugawa

Out of all the main roles within this period, it is his role as Atsushi Kinugawa in the slice-of-life/parody anime, Binan Koukou Chikyuu Boueibu LOVE! – and the 2016 and 2017 sequels – that is fondly remembered by his fans.

Atsushi Kinugawa is a hard worker, good cook, yet rather reluctant when all the fighting comes along. The way Nishiyama portrayed Kinugawa’s personality made him even more relatable and loved by fans of the anime series.

Kazunori Uesugi

He then was cast to voice the calm and collected soccer player Kazunori Uesugi in the mystery anime, Tantei Team KZ Jiken Note.

Sakutaro Kirara

In 2015, Nishiyama joined the long-running comedy and magic anime series, Jewelpet Magical Change, as the analytical, science lover, Sakutaro Kirara.

Still in 2015, he voiced Suzuha, one of Bishamon’s regalia, in the action, supernatural anime, Noragami ARAGOTO.

Yoshiharu Hisomu

His role as Yoshiharu Hisomu in the 2016 sci-fi and drama anime, Kiznaiver, was a departure from his usual calm and collected roles, as he tackled a masochist with quite a few extra quirks.

Nishiyama had in his hands a character that demanded quite the versatile and unique performance and he delivered, making Hisomu one of the most popular characters in the series.

Frate Vanetti

Still in the same year, Nishiyama was cast in the crime and drama anime, 91 DAYS.

He voiced Frate Vanetti, mafioso affiliated with the Vanetti family.

As the youngest Vanetti, he is well-mannered but is always in the shadow of his brothers, something that ends up being the spark for him to decide to take action into his hands and show how much he could do for his family.

That and other choices result in him being used which, later on, leads to his demise.

Other anime he voiced characters during this period of time include:

  • Kyoukai no Rinne (2015),
  • Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso (2015),
  • Overlord (2015),
  • Starmyu (2015),
  • Nagato Yuki-chan no Shoushitsu (2015),
  • ALL OUT!! (2016),
  • SERVAMP! (2016),
  • High School Fleet (2016),
  • Fudanshi Kouko Seikatsu (2016), among many others.

2017 –

Dipping his feet in music anime and varying his repertoire

2017 started a new trend for Koutaro Nishiyama. Music anime or adaptations for anime of music games or games with music undertones started to be hit the small screen. With this Nishiyama, that already was a part of several of these projects, started to have a different light shine on him.

With the anime adaptation of the mixed media franchise TSUKIPRO, he was going to reprise his role as Eichi Horimiya, member of the talented idol group, QUELL.

Eichi Horimiya

Eichi Horimiya is QUELL’s member that also happens to act like a brother to his fellow group members. His gentle and caring personality as well as his social skills make him a social butterfly capable of nurturing friendships with almost everyone.

Following the solid 2017, Nishiyama saw an improvement in the number of anime series he would be voicing characters in.

2018 and 2019 proved to be two consistent years in his career, providing plenty of entertainment for his fans while showcasing his range and talents by tackling contrasting characters in a wide variety of anime genres.

Ryuichi Kashima

He kicked off 2018 by being cast as Ryuichi Kashima in the slice-of-life anime Gakuen Babysitters.

Hikaru Sato

That leading role was followed by another, this time in the sports anime Major 2nd. He voiced Hikaru Sato.


Still in the same year, he joined the cast of the comedy, slice-of-life anime, Gaikotsu Shotenin Honda-san as the level-headed and useful, Kendo.

Yuzuki Teramitsu

A year later he joined the main cast of B-Project: Zecchou*Emotion as KiLLER KiNG‘s calm and collected member, Yuzuki Teramitsu.

Tokio Abiko

It was followed by a supporting role in the slice-of-life and comedy anime, Jimoto ga Japan. He voiced Tokio Abiko.

Kyousuke Tsuzuki

Later in 2019, Nishiyama got a role in the anime adaptation of the puzzle/romance game Stand My Heroes! – Stand My Heroes: Piece of Truth.

He voiced the gaudy Kyousuke Tsuzuki, popular actor caught in the happenings of the anime.

Kanata Shinkai

A long-awaited anime adaptation hit the small screen still in 2019.

Ensemble Stars!, an idol grooming smartphone game, was adapted to anime and with it, all groups in the franchise up until then got their chance to shine and put a smile on their fans’ faces.

He reprised his role as Kanata Shinkai, Ryuseitai‘s member and one of the oddballs in the franchise.

Tsuzuru Minagi

2020 kicked off with Nishiyama reprising his role as Spring Troupe‘s scriptwriter and actor Tsuzuru Minagi in A3! Season Spring & Summer, anime adaptation of the popular smartphone game, A3!.

Other anime which he voiced characters include Konbini Kareshi (2017), Sengoku Night Blood (2017), Sakurada Reset (2017), Chuukan Kanriroku Tonegawa (2018), Zoids Wild (2018), BEM (2019), Egao no Daika (2019), between many others.


At the 12th Seiyuu Awards in 2018, Koutaro Nishiyama won the Best New Actor Award for his role as Eichi Horimiya in TSUKIPRO: THE ANIMATION.

This award came as a surprise because this category up, until then, only awarded seiyuu that had less than 5 years of career as a seiyuu – with Nishiyama already having 6 active years by the time he received this award.


Nishiyama has been active as an actor since he joined 81 Produce. He’s part of the theater troupe Hatsukoi Project, which also counts with Yoshiki Nakajima and Daiki Kobayashi.

After debuting as a seiyuu, he’s been part of several acting and live reading projects, showcasing his versatility and passion in this medium.

He launched, alongside fellow seiyuu Reona Irie and Yu Taniguchi, the mixed media project, Ooimachi Cream Soda.

Since his debut as a seiyuu, he has never stopped being active as an actor, acting in reading plays, theater, TV as often as possible.

Nazotoki wa Dinner no Ato de in 2017

He’s participated in quite a few reading plays over the years such as Nazotoki wa Dinner no Ato de (2017), Jekyll and Hyde (2018), Cyrano (2018), Wuthering Heights (2020), among many others.

In 2019, Nishiyama and the rest of the cast of Omikuji Yon Kyodai, participated in the special event, Omikuji Yon Kyodai Fuyu no Tantei wa Roast Beef ga Osuki.

Omikuji Yon Kyodai
Omikuji Yon Kyodai – Wataru Hatano, Soma Saito, Koutaro Nishiyama and Shunsuke Takeuchi, Wataru Komada

The star-studded 81 Produce Project counts in its cast with Wataru Hatano, Soma Saito and Shunsuke Takeuchi.

Wataru Komada was a guest for the special live reading+ variety event, Omikuji Yon Kyodai Fuyu no Tantei wa Roast Beef ga Osuki.

Koutaro Nishiyama has been working on this project for a couple of years in collaboration with KIKI-VOICE.

Bokukoe and Bokukoe 2 (2017 – 2018)

Koutaro Nishiyama (As fortune-teller)

In 2018, Nishiyama joined the cast of the eccentric variety series, Bokukoe.

With the series’ various stories and segments, he was featured as a member of the idol group BELLWETHER alongside fellow seiyuu Shunsuke Takeuchi, Toshiki Masuda, Tasuku Hatanaka and Chiharu Sawashiro.

Tasuku Hatanaka & Koutaro Nishiyama

He also participated in other stories within the series as a supporting actor.

Yokoso moso eigyobu e (2020)

In 2020 he acted opposite fellow 81 Produce talent, Kento Ito, in the ANIMAX mini live-action series, ようこそ妄想営業部へ♡ (Yokoso moso eigyobu e), a spin-off of the manga, Atarashii Joushi wa Do Tennen.


As someone passionate about broadcasting, radio was a natural fit for him. Since even before making his official debut as a seiyuu in 2012, Nishiyama was already part of radio projects within 81 Produce.

After his debut, he has grabbed all chances to host radio shows, doing so with a flair and ease that showcase how comfortable he is working in this medium.

Below we take a look at some of the most important radio shows in his career.

Animarus radio personalities in 2012: Nobunaga Shimazaki, Leona Irie, Koutaro Nishiyama, Yuto Suzuki (down), Hideo Ishiwaka (top)
Animarus radio personalities in 2012: Nobunaga Shimazaki, Leona Irie, Koutaro Nishiyama, Yuto Suzuki (down), Hideo Ishiwaka (top)

In 2011, Nishiyama joined Animarus, radio show that spawned even a debut of the group as a unit.

Animarus was a short-lived radio show that counted with Nobunaga Shimazaki, Leona Irie, Koutaro Nishiyama, and Yuto Suzuki. Veteran seiyuu Hideo Ishikawa was in charge of guiding the rookie actors to grow as entertainers.

The radio show would end up being shelved in 2013.

A&G ARTIST ZONE 2h Koutaro Nishiyama with artist GERO

Nishiyama has a long partnership with A&G+, having hosted quite a few radio shows for the broadcaster. He was active as a host for A&G ARTIST ZONE 2h from 2012 until 2015.

Nippon Reading Academy (featuring Koutaro Nishiyama and Soma Saito)
Nippon Reading Academy (featuring Koutaro Nishiyama and Soma Saito)

81 Produce had its radio show to give experience to their new talents and he joined it even before having any work as a seiyuu.

The first radio show he co-hosted was Nishiyama Koutaro & Saito Soma Happy Radio  (2013 – 2016) alongside fellow 81 Produce talent Soma Saito.

The show counted with guests from 81 Produce, trying to give the spotlight to them by introducing their work, talents, and voice to the public.

Nippon Reading Academy

Still closely tied to 81 Produce, Koutaro Nishiyama joined the radio show Nippon Reading Academy alongside Shunsuke Takeuchi and Soma Saito, among other seiyuu.

Nishiyama was part of this radio show from 2013 until 2016.

B's log fan meeting radio in 2016
B’s log fan meeting radio in 2016

Years later he teamed up with Koutaro Nishiyama for the hilarious viewable radio show Nishiyama Koutaro・Takeuchi Shunsuke’s ‘s-LOG FAN MEETING (airing from 2016 to 2017).

Hyorotto Danshi

Nishiyama’s longest-running co-hosting radio show is 宏太朗と裕一郎 ひょろっと男子 (Kotaro to Yuichiro Hyorotto Danshi).

The radio show, co-hosted with fellow seiyuu Yuichiro Umehara, kicked off in 2015 and is one of the most popular male seiyuu-hosted radio shows.

Stemming from the show, the duo made their debut in 2018 as Hyorotto Danshi with おしえてョ (Oshiete yo).

This is now a long-time partnership.

As many of Nishiyama’s fans might be aware, he is quite close to Takuya Eguchi, fellow 81 Produce talent. Over the years the duo has hosted several radio shows and worked on variety shows.

Since 2015, the duo has been co-hosting Eguchi Takuya ・Nishiyama Koutaro Konya mo Nemurasenai Kindan Shiri, radio show that was filled with funny moments and entertaining rants while waving their “forbidden talk” flag with pride. Their chemistry makes the whole show genuinely fun and, at times, even unscripted.

At the same time, Nishiyama kicked off two solo radio shows.

Nishiyama Koutaro ga 24-sai mae ni kanaetai kokonotsu no yume

西山宏太朗が24歳までに叶えたい9つの夢 (Nishiyama Koutaro ga 24-sai mae ni kanaetai kokonotsu no yume) aired in 2015 and it followed a bucket-list format of things Nishiyama wanted to accomplish during the time he was 24 years old.


His most successful and longest-running solo radio show was the bright Nishiyama Koutaro no Taroyume. The show ran from 2015 until its end in 2019.

Manga Park Radio

Currently active radio projects include Ishikawa Kaito to Nishiyama Kotaro no Sakurada Reset Hoshi radio (2017 -), Oimachi cream soda’s Schwashwa overflow echo time (2017 -) and Nishiyama Koutaro Kyoiku Iinkai (2018).

Other radio shows that Nishiyama has hosted or been a guest include Animarus radio (2012), Oimachi cream soda radio (2015 – 2017), Kizraji (2016), Rajinata (2019), between many others.


When it comes to games, Nishiyama has been quite occupied. His first roles in this medium came in 2014 and soon, he would be a bit all over the otome, rhythm game panorama with roles in the popular franchises such as Ensemble Stars! (2014), I ★ Chu (2016) B-PROJECT (2017), A3! (2017) and IDOLiSH7 (2017).

Nishiyama often voices calm and collected characters but he has a knack for voicing eccentric and or quirky characters or characters with odd hobbies.

Kanata Shinkai in Ensemble Stars! (2015 -)

Kanata Shinkai

Kanata Shikai is RYUSEITAI’s member as well as an oddball with a love for water beyond reason and his non-existent swimming skills.

The character is known for its eccentric behavior and unpredictability which often leads to pretty funny situations within the game’s story.

Saku Uruha in I ★ Chu (2016 -)


Saku Uruha is part of the I-Chu franchise. He is a member of the bad-boy rock trio, Alchemist, and is a part-time stalker of sorts of the game’s main character (player’s character).

Yuduki Teramitsu in B-PROJECT Muteki*Dangerous (2017 -)

Yuduki Teramitsu

The calm and collected older Teramitsu twin in B-PROJECT.

Nishiyama has been voicing the character since it was introduced in the franchise back in 2017. Yuduki Teramitsu is known for its gentle and down-to-earth personality.

Minagi Tsuzuru in A3! (2017 -)

Spring Troupe’s scriptwriter, Citron’s unofficial interpreter, and the big brother figure in the franchise make Minagi Tsuzuru one of the most loved characters in the A3! franchise.

Minami Natsume in IDOLiSH7 (2017 -)


For those playing IDOLiSH7, unveiling the game’s rival unit came off as a surprise. ZOOL made its debut in 2017 in what is considered the best chapter in the game’s story.

Nishiyama voice’s ZOOL‘s member, Minami Natsume. Known for being calm and collected with a gentle smile on his face, Natsume is a child-acting prodigy as well as ZOOL’s songwriter. More often than not, his demeanor is polite yet with a bit of dark or venomous intent behind his gentle smiles.

As the story progressed, fans started to grow fond of the character that initially stroke a nerve, something that Nishiyama perfectly nailed with his acting.

He voiced characters as well in games such as Future Card Buddyfight: Explosive Fight of Friendship (2015), Yume Oukoku to Nemureru 100-nin no Ouji-sama (2015), Cute High Earth Defense Club Love! Game! (2015), Stand My Heroes (2016), Granblue Fantasy (2016), Icchibanketsu -ONLINE- (2016), Sengoku Night Blood (2017), Captain Tsubasa ~Tatakae Dream Team~ (2017), Tsumugu Logic (2018), BUSTAFELLOW (2019), between many others.


Nishiyama is a natural when it comes to narrating variety shows.

In his repertoire is narration for variety shows such as Animemashite (2016), Saito Soma no Wagokoro wo Kimi ni (2017 -), Shouta-sama to Shitsuji Nishiyama no Otawamure (2018), just to name a few.

For unscripted narration such as the one he does for Saito Soma no Wagokoro wo Kimi ni, Nishiyama goes all out with funny moments as well as impresses with his range by giving life to the short stories that tie in with the visits to shrines across Japan.

Foreign movies and series are already in his repertoire, with Nishiyama having dubbing credits in NCIS:LA, SCHOOL OF ROCK (as Lawrence), Borgia, Game Shakers, Der ganz große Traum, The To Do List and Thomas & Friends.

Drama CDs

In a collaboration drama between KIKI VOICE and 81 Produce, Nishiyama is voicing Aoba (the third brother) in the original drama Omikuji Shi Kyodai alongside Wataru Hatano, Soma Saito and Shunsuke Takeuchi, fellow 81 Produce talents.

He’s reprised his role as Yuzuki Teramitsu in B-PROJECT KING of CASTE 〜Sneaking Shadow〜 (2018) and counted with roles in drama CD projects such as SolidS drama CD Volume 2 “-Two of a kind.-“, GETUP! GETLIVE! Steam Rising, Einsatz, Otodoke Kareshi Cherish, Atarashii Joushi wa Do Tennen, ambivalence, between others.


Koutaro Nishiyama has been one of the most active seiyuu when it comes to being in music projects.

From 81 Produce’s concept group – soffive – aimed at putting the spotlight on the company’s rookies to being a part of one of the most unique groups among 2D idols – QUELL – and being a member of one of the most explosive 2D idol units at the moment – ZOOL -, Nishiyama has managed to create quite the repertoire and reputation.

As a singer, Nishiyama has come a long way.

He started as not confident as a singer, lacking control while having a high, nasal pitch that did not work well. He worked that around and has shown on multiple occasions that he can pull off singing that will impress you however, he still lacks the consistency to do so.

All these projects were and are a pivotal part of his growth as a singer and performer – some groups require him to not only sing but also dance -, therefore watching his growth has been one of the most exciting things for his fans.

Solo career (2020 -)

Koutaro Nishiyama

In May 2020, Lantis announced that Koutaro Nishiyama had joined the label as their newest solo artist. This announcement came as a surprise to most fans.

The mini-album CITY is going to be released in Fall 2020. Mahirodoki no Stella, the mini-album’s lead track, has its full music video released on Lantis’ youtube on the same day of the announcement.

Animarus (2012)

Animarus debut single "Stride"
Animarus debut single “Stride”

Animarus, group consisting of Nobunaga Shimazaki, Koutaro Nishiyama, Reona Irie, and Yuto Suzuki – radio hosts for the radio show Animarus – made their debut in 2012 with the single, Stride!.

Due to the short-lived radio show and how the group’s debut was a complement to it, the group disbanded in the same year.

soffive (2013)


81 Produce debuted soffive in 2013.

The unit was created to promote their rookie talents. soffive consisted of Kento ItoYoshiki NakajimaArthur LounsberyKoutaro Nishiyama and Shunya Hiruma.

They performed live and featured three of their songs in the motion comic, Voice Acting Sentai Boy’s tome 7 that aired on Fuji TV in the last quarter of 2013.

Soon after debuting, the unit disbanded.

Ryuseitai (2015 -)

In 2015, he joined the cast of Ensemble Stars! to voice Kanata Shinkai, Ryuseitai‘s member, and official odd-ball.

The group features Yuichi Jose, Takumi Watanabe, Anju Nitta, Yoshiki Nakajima and is known for their passionate pop tunes that channel the hero in them.

The quartet has released 3 mini-albums so far – Vol.1 “Ryuseitai” (released in 2015), Vol.1 “Ryuseitai” 2 (released in 2016) and Vol.6 “Ryuseitai” 3 (released in 2017) – and a full-length album “Ensemble Stars! Album Series Ryuseitai” (released in 2018).

Ryuseitai performed live for the first time Ensemble Stars! Starry Stage 1st ~in Makuhari Messe ~ in 2018.

KiLLER KiNG (2016 -)

In 2016, Nishiyama joined the cast of B-PROJECT. He was introduced as KiLLER KiNG‘s Yuduki Teramitsu.

KiLLER KiNG, consists of Shoya Chiba, Koutaro Nishiyama, Taku Yashiro, and Takuya Eguchi.

Since their debut, the group has released 4 singles – Kira Kira Smile (2016),  Hungry Wolf (2016), Break it down (2017), and Jyubyo Mirai (2019) – and 1 mini-album – Phantom of Love (2018).


KiLLER KiNG has performed live twice: B-PROJECT Kodou Ambitious BRILLIANT PARTY (2016) and B-PROJECT Summer Live 2018 – Eternal Pacific –.

Black Verry (2016)

Black Verry

Rejet created the project Forbidden Star in 2016. Several units were announced to be part of this project – now dropped – including Black Verry, group consisting of Kenji NojimaYuma UchidaKoutaro Nishiyama, and Toshiyuki Toyonaga.

The group released two singles before disbanding: Yushi Kajitsu (2016) and MISTAKE Wah NOISY (2017).

Among all units part of the Forbidden Star franchise, Black Verry was considered the most powerful and consistent unit, making great use of the enormous talent as well as carefully crafted pop-rock instrumentals.

QUELL (2016 -)


Nishiyama is a member of QUELL, unit part of Tsukino Production‘s fictional talent agency.

QUELL are known for their pure and delicate sound, giving off a feeling of being underwater.

Unique and showing a versatility that most units within the SQ and ALIVE franchises didn’t have, the unit debuted in 2016, impressing everyone with stunning vocals and a fresh sound.

The unit has more than a couple of singles under its belt, including solo songs (X Lied series).

QUELL in 2016 (From left to right: Koutaro Nishiyama, Sho Nogami, Shugo Nakamura and Shunsuke Takeuchi)
QUELL in 2016 (From left to right: Koutaro Nishiyama, Sho Nogami, Shugo Nakamura and Shunsuke Takeuchi)

QUELL in 2016 (From left to right: Koutaro Nishiyama, Sho Nogami, Shugo Nakamura, and Shunsuke Takeuchi)

As a group, QUELL is known for their powerful vocals – from thunderous bass vocals from Takeuchi to stunning high notes from Nakamura and Nogami and mid-tones, round notes by Nishiyama -, plus unique instrumentals.

Rock, pop, dance, electronica, minimalistic electronica, and ballads, QUELL have managed to put their finger in almost every music genre and 90% of those attempts were successful.

S.Q.P Ver.QUELL (2019)
S.Q.P Ver.QUELL (2019)

In a live setting, Nishiyama is rather controlled and professional.

His gestures and movements are self-contained, with him performing everything in a professional, close to perfection way.

His singing skills have evolved a lot in the years he has been part of QUELL and, multiple times, he has impressed on the vocal end with stunning falsetto and high notes.

His performances in Hidden Eclipse and Utsurigi na Kaze – both released in 2018 – showcased his incredible growth on the vocal end, delivering two jaw-dropping performances.

With the group, his performances tend to be leveled but he almost stole the show with his performance in Angel’s Ladder, song released in 2018.

Alchemist (2016 -)


In 2016, Nishiyama joined the popular I-Chu franchise.

He was cast as Saku Uruha, member of Alchemist, group known for their fiery rock sound. He performs alongside Yusuke Kobayashi and Takumi Yasuaki.

Spring Troupe (2017 -)

Spring Troupe

In 2017, Nishiyama joined the cast for the A3!, game that would end up being a best seller in that same year.

He joined the Spring Troupe, consisting of Kodai Sakai (leader), Yusuke Shirai, Shintaro AsanumaMasashi Igarashi. Later, fellow 81 Produce talent, Wataru Hatano joined the group.

T-Backers (2017 -)

T-Backers is a seiyuu unit created by Saito and that includes Koutaro Nishiyama and Takuya Eguchi. The unit debuted in 2017 with the song Kachofugetsu, the official theme song for Saito‘s variety show “Wagokoro wo Kimi Ni”.

ŹOOĻ (2017 – )

In 2017, Koutaro Nishiyama joined the IDOLiSH7 franchise.

He was announced as part of ŹOOĻ, urban pop/industrial group that shook the franchise when it was first introduced in the in-game story and made a lot of jaw drops when their first single, Poisonous Gangster was released in the same year.

This was a new challenge for Nishiyama but in the group’s 1st release, he and Kondo Takashi got little to no spotlight.

Things changed when the group got to perform live for the very first time at IDOLISH7 2nd live REUNION in 2019.

In an explosive set that included the Poisonous Gangster, Look at… and ZONE OF OVERLAP, fans were in awe at the teamwork, vocal prowess, explosive dance moves and the dangerous aura the group exuded.


This was the first time Nishiyama got to be heard in the debut single songs, with parts being attributed to both him and Takashi, enabling them to join the group’s hot performances.

On top of it, Nishiyama showcased explosive dance moves that left everyone in awe.

2020 welcomed the group’s 2nd single, Bang!Bang!Bang!.

The single included the highly anticipated ZONE OF OVERLAP and the unique title track.


Still in the same year, ZOOL released their 1st full-length album “einstaZ“.

This album was a massive departure from the group’s original urban pop-meets-hip-hop sound going on in their first singles.

K-pop-inspired music took over, with many of the songs lending elements from the sub-genre of pop, focused on being flashy and catchy with not much care for depth or a more melodic, emotional side.

There were exceptions in the album though.

4-ROAR” was a nod to ZOOL’s original sound bringing a gritty and intense sound that put on the spotlight their unique brand of urban pop.

ZONE OF OVERLAP” made its comeback, having a big impact on the intensity that “einsatZ” packs.

And “Ache” put ZOOL in its first try at an emotional, melodic type of music. The quartet performed a slow-paced R&B tune and they dazzled everyone with their chemistry and quality on the vocal end.

Nishiyama showed just how much he grew on the vocal end by delivering performance after performance with a lot of quality.

From his ad-libs in “Ache” to the beauty he brought to the intense “4-ROAR”, he proved doubters wrong with a series of performance that will make your jaw drop.

While “einsatZ” was far from an impressive album – or even an upgrade over what ZOOL had previously done – it is also certain that it was an awesome outlet to showcase how much every single member improved in the singing department.

That was the highlight of the album: the growth and chemistry that all 4 seiyuu showcased.

Judgement (2017 – 2018)

In 2017, Rejet announced the launch of their first ever idol game “Star Revo“. Koutaro Nishiyama was announced as part of the four piece unit, Judgement, alongside Junta TerashimaYusuke Shirai and Yuma Uchida.

With the end of distribution for Star Revo, Judgement got to give a last gift to their fans with the release of the popular “One love” in the special Best Of, THE BEST「STAR REVOLUTION」Vol. 2.


From Left to Right: Koutaro Nishiyama, Tasuku Hatanaka, Toshiki Masuda, Shunsuke Takeuchi and Chiharu Sawashiro

In 2017, alongside Shunsuke TakeuchiToshiki MasudaTasuku Hatanaka, and Chiharu SawashiroNishiyama performed as BELLWETHER, a special unit created specifically for Boku Koe‘s musical segment.

The songs were a bit “different” in comparison with the typical idol songs – BELLWETHER‘s were more on the parody side -, with themes ranging from bad puns to nipples.

The unit served its purposed within the show and isn’t active anymore.

Eccentric Five (2018 – )

ECCENTRIC FIVE is a group comprised of Ensemble Stars!’s most eccentric characters voiced by Toshiki Masuda (Sakuma), Koutaro Nishiyama (Shinkai), Takuya Eguchi (Sakasaki), Hiroki Takahashi (Itsuki), Kenji Nojima (Sakasaki).

The group released their first song “Eccentric Party Night!!” part of Switch’s “Ensemble Stars! Album Series Switch” released on 24/10/2018.

Hyorotto Danshi (2018 -)

hyorotto danshi

Although Hyorotto Danshi is no novelty, with their radio show being already well known between fans of Koutaro Nishiyama and Yuichiro Umehara -, the duo only made their debut in 2018 with おしえてョ (Oshiete yo).

The duo then returned later in 2019 with the release of Kimi wa Sirius.


In 2016, Koutaro Nishiyama released his 1st personal book, Nishiyama-san Chi no Koutaro-kun.

A year later he released an essay book titled Tarorizumu.

It includes Nishiyama‘s articles from his serialized corner on Seiyuu Grandprix titled Adam and Eve and Nishiyama Koutaro as well as a special corner he wrote with Takuya Eguchi.

Several photos with different concepts are also included.

In 2019 and in partnership with HACObook, Koutaro Nishiyama participated in the CD + Photobook, Hansel and Gretel x Nishiyama Koutaro.

This unique concept counted with Nishiyama narrating the story and participating in a special themed photoshoot.

First solo magazine cover

Koutaro Nishiyama’s first magazine cover was for Voice Newtype No.67, released in 2018.


The very first variety/talk show Nishiyama hosted was Binan Koukou Chikyuu Boueibu LOVE! Nicosei! ~ Battle Namers ~.

The show was broadcasted periodically on Nico Nico and counted with the main cast of the anime series – Kazutomi Yamamoto, Toshiki Masuda, Koutaro Nishiyama, Yuichiro Umehara, and Yusuke Shirai.

The show ran from 2014 up until 2017 and give birth to a lot of famous memes by Nishiyama, Masuda, and Umehara, showing how bonkers the whole show was.

Animemashite (2014, 2015 and 2016)

Nishiyama was the only seiyuu who got to host, guest, and do the narration for this seiyuu-hosted variety show.

Tokyo Otome Restaurant 2 (2015)

Tokyo Otome Restaurant 2

In 2015, Nishiyama joined the cooking/variety show, Tokyo Otome Restaurant 2.

The show stemmed from the smartphone – now discontinued – featuring its cast in a variety of challenges alongside hosts Showtaro Morikubo and Natsuki Hanae.

Alongside Taku Yashiro and Daiki Hamano, Koutaro Nishiyama was part of the helpers’ team that would undertake special tasks for the show.

Oreiya (2016 – )


Hosted by Takuya Eguchi and featuring Koutaro Nishiyama as the show’s assistant, this variety show’s concept comprises traveling to healing locations.

The variety show premiered in 2016 and currently counts with 4 seasons. Fellow 81 Produce talent Soma Saito, narrates the show.

Sokuboku (2016 -)

Nishiyama Koutaro no Sokuboku Peace! DVD release event 2019

Stemming from Takuya Eguchi’s Oreiya, Koutaro Nishiyama started to host his own variety show, focused on sports and healing locations, Sokuboku Peace.

The show counts with 2 seasons.

Saito Soma no Wagokoro wo Kimi ni (2017 -)

In 2017, Koutaro Nishiyama was announced as the narrator for Soma Saito’s healing variety show, Saito Soma no Wagokoro wo Kimi ni.

He has been narrating for all seasons of the show – 2017 and 2019.

Nao ON AIR (2017- )

Nao ON AIR feat. Koutaro Nishiyama

In 2017, Koutaro Nishiyama participated in Yoshiki Nakajima’s なうON AIR (Nao ON AIR) DVDs.

Through these DVDs, fans get a closer look at the recordings for Nakajima’s radio show, all through an eye-level camera in both Nakajima and his guest.

Koutaro Nishiyama participated in the 2nd DVD.

Santaku (2017)

Santaku 2017

Nishiyama was invited to Santaku in 2017, talk and variety show hosted by Takuya Eguchi and Taku Yashiro. He guested alongside Ryota Suzuki.

Shouta-sama to shitsuji Nishiyama no otawamure (2018)

In 2018, Nishiyama Koutaro co-hosted the TV show Shouta-sama to shitsuji Nishiyama no otawamure alongside fellow seiyuu, Shouta Aoi.

The duo would conduct interviews with popular 2.5D stage actors, actors, seiyuu, and more.

LIPSS Innocent na Sasayaki (2018)

LIPSS Innocent na Sasayaki premiered in 2018 with a promising concept that ended up not panning out.

The show counted with a star-studded cast comprised of popular seiyuu – Takuya Eguchi, Soma Saito, Koutaro Nishiyama, Arthur Lounsbery, and Mai Fuchigami – and popular stage actors – Mario Kuroba, Motohiro Ohta and Daichi Saeki.

Koutaro Nishiyama participated in some of the episodes in the show.

Choimo TV in GUAM (2018)

In the same year, Koutaro Nishiyama and Tetsuya Kakihara took their talk show Choimo TV overseas.

Choimo TV in GUAM featured the duo hanging out with guest, Nobuhiko Okamoto.

Seiyu Collection – Futari no Code SHOW – Natsuki Hanae x Koutaro Nishiyama(2020)


In 2019, Koutaro Nishiyama was featured alongside fellow seiyuu Natsuki Hanae, in Seiyu Collection, series of variety DVDs in which popular seiyuu have a fashion battle.

A theme is given and both have to come up with an outfit that fits theme and go shopping for it. Aside from the battle portion of the show, the two seiyuu talk about fashion, their go-to style, off-duty styles as well as a more casual themes.


Inseparable from the 81 Produce gang

Oreiya 2017
Oreiya 2017

The Eguchi-Nishiyama-Saito trio is well known among seiyuu and seiyuu fans.

The dynamic 81 Produce trio has been, since their debuts, working together in a wide variety of projects that range from music to variety and showcase chemistry like no other seiyuu group.

Eguchi is the “veteran” of the trio and was instrumental in showing the ropes of entertainment to Nishiyama, taking him under his wing in Oreiya and sponsoring him a spot for his own variety show in 2016, Sokuboku.

Saito is the same age and both trained at 81 Produce around the same time.

Since early on they have been part of various radio projects together. As time flew by, both started to meet in music projects or other variety shows. Saito always speaks fondly of Nishiyama despite mocking him frequently for his speaking quirks.

The trio has known each other for over 10 years and showcase one of the closest-knitted friendships in the seiyuu industry.

Easy-to-mimic voice

Not necessarily a novelty but Nishiyama’s voice has been countlessly mimicked by his peers.

Seiyuu from 81 Produce – Takuya Eguchi, Soma Saito, Tetsuya Kakihara (former 81 Produce), Yoshiki Nakajima – have a close to perfect technique, copying his tone and mannerisms leading to funny situations whenever it happens.

Close friends with Toshiki Masuda, Yuichiro Umehara and Yusuke Shirai

His friendship with Toshiki Masuda, Yuichiro Umehara and Yusuke Shirai started to be noticed by fans in the Binan Kouko‘s early days. The trio was part of the main cast and quickly hit it off when hosting the same variety show connected to the anime series.

Their chemistry instantly shows when they are together and any show that features him with any of the two will certainly have a lot of teasing and fun going on.

Always Extra


Posing for photos can easily be “ruined” by Nishiyama’s “charisma”.

When it comes to photos, he is not afraid of going a bit overboard with his poses and when on camera – whether for a live broadcast or a recording of a variety show – he often throws his image under the bus in favor of a funny moment on camera.

As a result, he is known one of the seiyuu meme kings, with plenty of funny moments of his captured on GIF.

With this, THTFHQ wraps up another Seiyuu Digest. In the meantime, don’t forget to check past Seiyuu Digests (some of those recently updated) – HERE.

LAST UPDATED ON: 12/08/2021

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Vanessa Silva
Vanessa Silva
The Hand That Feeds HQ founder, content creator, and music reviewer. Basically, the only person managing everything at The Hand That Feeds HQ. Stumbling upon Mamoru Miyano's "Orpheus" in 2011 was the start of this journey. If music is thought-provoking or deep, you may find her writing almost essays (not limited to, but it happens a lot with Soma Saito's music). She's the producer and host of the male seiyuu-centric podcast, SEIYUU LOUNGE (see Spotify link in this profile).


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