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9 SKE48 Idols to Graduate this Spring

During their theater performance last January 15th, idol group SKE48 announced that nine of its current members will be graduating from the group this Spring. The news brought shock to many fans.

To graduate are Mizuki Kuwabara, Shiori Takada, Kanako Hiramatsu (team S), Ririna Akaeda, Shiori Ogiso (team KII), Kasumi Ueno, Minami Hara (team E) and Emiri Kobayashi (Kenkyuusei). Also included is Kumi Yagami who announced her graduation, via a blog post, late last year.

As a send-off, they will form a unit called “Tabidachi Sotsugyou-gumi”, and perform “Sore wo Seishun to Yobu Hi”. The song will be included as a coupling song for the SKE48's latest singleChoco no Dorei”.

According to Yuasa Hiroshi, the SKE48 theater manager:
The girls’ activities as members of SKE48 are just a temporary passing point in their lives. Though it’s a sad thought to lose any of them, I thought it was best to not get in the way of their ultimate goals in life.. As the result of consultation with Akimoto Sensei (=Akimoto Yasushi), it was decided that the graduating members would sing the song together.

Here are the comments by the graduating members (translations by tokyohive):

Emiri Kobayashi
“After facing with my father’s death last year, I started thinking about my future, and I have decided to graduate. It’s not that everything was all happy and fun, but my activities in SKE48 will be something I can be proud for the rest of my life. After this, I want go on to the next stage of education, and find my new self.”

Minami Hara
“I, who started as a 4th generation member when I was 14 years old, am now become 17 years old. I’ve experienced many things, such as team promotion, Senbatsu, and stage performances. In order for me to make use of the experiences, and to make my big dream come true, I have decided to graduate. I will never forget the time I spent in here, the memories with you, and of course SKE48.”

Kasumi Ueno
“It’s been 3 years since I joined SKE48 as a third generation member, there were things I have gained and things I have lost. I am now a third‐year high school student, and it is about the time to attend university. I decided to graduate to focus on studies.”

Shiori Ogiso
“Reaching the age of 20 last year which was the big turning point in my life, I started thinking about so many things. I wished to broaden my horizons at the time of my turning point, thus I decided to graduate.”

Ririna Akaeda
“I will be in the second year of high school soon. As my friends are thinking about entering higher-level schools, I thought that I could not stay like this, therefore I decided to graduate. My 4 years of activities were so much fun.”

Kumi Yagami
“Though I have announced my graduation earlier, please let me greet you one more time. As I announced previously, I decided to graduate so that I could see the bigger world. I am also ready to start over again. I know it would be hard, but I am also ready to overcome the hardships.”

Kanako Hiramatsu
“I’ve been in the group for 4 and a half years since I joined as the first generation member. I faced my future for the first time when I broke my leg last year. In order for me to keep loving SKE48 and myself, I thought that it’s the best time to graduate. I found a place I could shine inside of my heart, and I would like to start the path towards that place.”

Shiori Takada
“I have decided to graduate from SKE48. I entered the group when I was a high school student, and I had the opportunity to meet so many people until now. I was happy to be able to meet you all who always supported me, and I think that is the best boast for me. I love fashion, and I do not want to stop the feeling right there. I want to try my best toward my dream.”

Mizuki Kuwabara
“I also decided my graduation. My activity in SKE48 was not the goal for me from the start. I want to take the second step toward my dream.”


SKE48's “Choco no Dorei” will be released this January 30th, and be available in six different versions: CD+DVD TYPE A, B and C, both in Limited and Regular Editions. Pre-order now at CDJapan and get an EXCLUSIVE PHOTO as a bonus

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1 Response
  1. CYAN Says:

    probably going to expect to see more graduation from AKB and SKE this year, I think this is an act of trimming down the fat from the manager by offering promotion for older member with average popularity as an exchange for their graduation. - Buy Video Games for Consoles and PC - From Japan, Korea and other Regions
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