Azusa Sasaki (佐々木 梓 Sasaki Azusa ) is a character in the Hibike! Euphonium series. She is Kumiko Oumae's middle school friend from band, and they later became friendly rivals due to attending different high schools.
Azusa is also the main character of the Rikka High School spin-off novels, which tell the story from Rikka High School's perspective.
Azusa has long, straight, mid-length blackish hair, which is tied up into a ponytail at the back. She also has bright light indigo eyes and fair skin. Azusa is usually seen wearing a standard Rikka High School marching uniform for female students.
Not so much known about Azusa's personality except that she is a very friendly person who cares for her friends. She loves playing instruments, likes music and is passionate about it. She also knows when to be serious and not, and she is quite mature and understanding of situations.
Azusa is first introduced in Welcome! High School, and is the first named character seen in the show, sitting beside Kumiko Oumae as they await the competition results. She then leaves to tell another band member the results, enabling Kumiko's fateful exchange of words with Reina Kousaka. She next appears in Festival Time, where she performs at SunFes with her school, Rikka High School. There she again met Kumiko, and they talked a little. Azusa asked Kumiko why she chose Kitauji High School, but Kumiko said that she didn't have a reason, but rather that she wanted to have a new start. After that, she went away to perform with her school, while Azusa did the same. She later appeared in Goodbye Competition, briefly waving to Kumiko, and was later shown looking nervous during Kitauji's performance. In the movie-version retelling of the first season, Azusa gets a few images focused on her during the credits, after the competition.
- Azusa has the same given name as her voice actress, Azusa Tadokoro.
- Azusa (梓) is a Japanese feminine given name, literally meaning Japanese Cherry Birch (Betula grossa), among other senses (other trees, and objects made from this wood).
- Azusa, along with fellow former Daikichiyama Kita Middle School band members Reina Kousaka and Shuuichi Tsukamoto, are the only people from before Kumiko's (intended) fresh start at Kitauji High School that Kumiko is known to still be in contact with.
- To further expand the above point, Kumiko's negative situations with both Reina and Shuuichi at the time were two major reasons Kumiko wanted a fresh start in the first place, making Azusa the only person Kumiko was still in contact with and also not trying to avoid.