Risa Sera has become one of the most popular freelance wrestlers in all of Japan after leaving Ice Ribbon at the end of 2021 to form Prominence alongside Suzu Suzuki, Akane Fujita, Mochi Natsumi, and Kurumi Hiiragi.
When the group appeared at STARDOM's Supreme Fight 2022, it was the moment that would kick off what would be an incredible year for Sera and the group.
Sera's challenge against Syuri for the World of Stardom Championship at Flashing Champions was not only considered one of the best matches of the year for STARDOM, but one of the definitive matches of Syuri's reign due to the Prominence leader's hardcore mindset and making the match her own.
Sera also appeared in the 5STAR Grand Prix, earning a signature victory over Syuri on the final night before Prominence went onto win the Artist of Stardom Championship at Stardom Dream Queendom 2023.
Outside of STARDOM, Sera took part in a number of promotions including Pro Wrestling WAVE, Sendai Girls, and OZ Academy. She ended her year in WAVE by winning the Regina Di Wave No. 1 Contendership Tournament to earn an opportunity at Hikaru Shida to kick off the year. The Prominence leader came up short in the end but gave Shida her best challenge yet since she won the championship.
Sera's Deathmatch prowess has been on full display with the Prominence produce shows giving her the best opportunity to shine in her specialty.
Finally, Sera's many accomplishments before going freelance of course came in Ice Ribbon, where she was a two-time ICExInfinity Champion (including a year-long reign), one-time FantastICE Champion, and five-time International Ribbon Tag Team Champion (four times with Maya Yukihi).
Ahead of what should be another eventful year for both Sera and Prominence, Fightful's Scott Edwards had a chance to ask the Prominence leader some questions in this exclusive interview.
Here's what Risa Sera had to say!
What inspired you to become a pro wrestler?
Ice Ribbon was making a movie.
I was an actress.
I auditioned for the professional wrestling film.
I wasn't interested in professional wrestling at first.
But Hikaru Shida said, "You have the makings of professional wrestling."
I made up my mind to carry on with those words.
What would you tell someone who wants to become a pro wrestler?
Life doesn't know what will happen.
I want you to believe in yourself and push on anyway.
What is it about Deathmatch wrestling that appeals to you?
Not everyone can do a deathmatch.
It's fun to be able to overcome your limitations by continuing to fight even if you bleed.
What is your mindset when heading into a Deathmatch?
I want to live.
You made the decision to leave Ice Ribbon at the end of 2021. Can you tell us a bit about your time there and why you made the decision to ultimately move on?
When I was a member of the Ice Ribbon, I had a fulfilling time.
But I didn't get enough stimulation.
I left the Ice Ribbon for more stimulation.
When did the idea for Prominence come into being, and what was the process like in getting it off the ground?
I decided to work in a unit called PROMINENCE a month before I left the Ice Ribbon.
It took a long time to get back on track because it was unknown.
What kind of future do you see for Prominence?
I want to make PROMINENCE world famous.
Was there any inspiration behind the design of your hardcore/Deathmatch gear as opposed to your more traditional wrestling look?
I have enjoyed kendo since I was young.
I adopted that style.
Prominence invaded STARDOM to kick off 2022. How has the experience been working in the promotion?
Awareness of PROMINENCE was increased by taking part in STARDOM.
It's easier to show off our events.
Prominence ended 2022 as the Artist of Stardom Champions. What’s your goal for the group in STARDOM in 2023?
I want to aim for more and more belts in STARDOM.
It's enough to monopolize it with PROMINENCE.
Suzu Suzuki joined Prominence and it has led to both of you becoming incredibly popular among international STARDOM fans. Can you tell us about your relationship with her?
She is a cute junior and a good opponent.
Prominence has dominated wherever they’ve shown up. What do you credit that to?
We always go all out against any opponent.
We aren't thinking about tomorrow.
When you challenged Syuri for the World of Stardom Championship, you forced her into a match that isn’t like her usual style. You were unable to defeat her but did pick up a win at the end of the 5STAR over her. Would you like one more match against her? Or would you like to go after another singles championship in STARDOM?
I want to fight Syuri again and again.
I'm not satisfied with winning once.
I want to fight in various styles.
Does a match with Giulia interest you?
I want to taste the strength Giulia of today.
I only know young Giulia...
Throughout much of your career, you’ve dawned the color blue and it’s become your staple. Is there a reason that you chose that to be your color?
Because I love blue.
It's my favorite color.
What are some of your favorite matches from your career that you believe new fans should check out?
First of all, you need to know me.
I've had a 60-minute Iron Woman deathmatch many times, so please watch it.
You've worked for a lot of different promotions, what do you think makes certain groups stand out or succeed over others?
Where there is momentum, there is sparkle.
It has a charm that attracts many people.
Is there anyone you haven’t faced before that you’re hoping to in the future?
I want to have deathmatches with female professional wrestlers all over the world.
I have never fought abroad.
A number of Joshi wrestlers are beginning to travel internationally. Are you interested in wrestling outside of Japan in the future?
I'm very interested.
If I get an offer, I'll gladly accept it!
What do you like to do when you’re not wrestling or training?
I like playing video games.
On my days off, I stay at home and play video games.
Who are some of your most favorite opponents from your career?
The fight with Hikaru Shida, who is also a master, is very impressive.
I'll do anything to get beyond her!
Is there something you haven’t accomplished yet in your career that you hope to soon?
A huge thank you to Risa Sera for taking the time out of her busy schedule to take part in this interview.
If you'd like to follow along with Sera's career, make sure to follow her on Twitter: @Sera_Risa
We also want to thank Chiyoko for the help in this interview. Chiyoko helped me translate the questions from English to Japanese.
You can follow Chiyoko on Twitter here: @chiyoko_asakura
You can also follow Prominence on Twitter to never miss one of the group's events: @prominence2022
To check out Prominence's events, check their matches out here.