The career options of Morining Musume graduates

By TERRY - Last updated: 火曜日, 12月 22, 2009 - Save & Share - 3 Comments

 Koharu Kusumi,  the seventh generation member of  “Morning Musume”(モーニング娘。/or “MM”) graduated from that group and its parent organization, “Hello ! Project”(ハロー!プロジェクト/or “HP”) on this Dec.6th upon finishing  the final performance of MM’s “Concert Tour 2009 Autumn~Nine Smile~”  at Tokyo Kouseinenkin Kaikan.

kusumikoharuKoharu Kusumi  passed the audition of the seventh generation members and joined MM in 2005 when she was 12 years old. Tsunku, the producer of MM and HP valued her potential and aptitude to cutting out for an idol , saying “She is a MIRACLE ! “.   Soon after having  joined MM, she became its No.1 popular member. Not just as a singing idol, she even has become very popular as the voice actor of  Kirari Tsukishima , the heroine of  “Kirarin Revolution” , a popular  Japanese Anime work  for young girls.kirarin_revolution_song_selection_4_reg 







In addition ,she is still  young (17 years old). Therefore,  few people expected her to “graduate” from MM so early and were so shocked at the abrupt announcement of  her scheduled graduation in this September.

 MM once was a No.1  young female idol group of  Japan,which started its history in 1997. Though HP now has several popular female idols and idol groups, MM has always been its top group. Yet  unlike  the days of its zenith  about from 1998-2001, now it seems that the image of “No.1 national young female idol group” has been conceded to  AKB48 that I wrote about on one previous page here. As gradually MM  has been losing  its popularity and glory these 12 years (that is just the period of time for the Chinese zodiac to go around), the ” Miracle” Koharu Kusumi has been expected to regain the glorious days as its “savior”. But now her graduation may mean a gradual success of MM’s recapturing its old glory… Actually, MM is becoming popular again along with  other popular groups and idols of  HP.

If MM and HP don’t need a “messiah”  anymore due to the restoring  popularity, the MM’s fans  ought to welcome and support her graduation as an auspicious harbinger… Dhe now says she would like to start modelling from now on as her next stage of career.

 By the way, just after Koharu Kusumi’simpactinggraduation, there we got news that another graduate of MM had got an informal job-offer to become a tv announcer for TV TOKYO. Her name is Asami Konno, one of the fifth-generation members of MM 2001-2006.  She is not just a popular idol but well-known as a very smart girl. She took and passed “CertificateforStudentsAchieving the proficiency Level of Upper Secondary School Graduates”  , which  qualifies certificate of high school graduation to people  and enables them to take entrance exams to colleges, young colleges,and universities with the first try. She ,then, took and passed the AO(Admissions office) entrance exam and matriculated at  Faculty of Environment and Information Studies of Keio University, which is one of the fanciest universities in Japan. She once retired from the showbiz  for a while but soon  she made a come-back  and remains  a popular idol mainly as a member of  Gatas Brilhantes H.P.(a futsal team of  HP idols) and Ongaku Gatas, a female singer group of the team as well as being a student (She graduated from HP again at the end of this March but the group remains the same now as one group of  M-line club).



 Actually Konno seems to be a smart person and has a clear vision, steady plans, and ideas 0f  her future. And like I said MM and HP’s popularity have been declining these years, which may have influenced her decision of  her plans for job career.  She may feel idols’ popularity and that  kind of world is an ephemral  fad, and hope to open a brighter breakthrough in a “steadier world” where she can utilize her personal accomplishments and academic career.  As the matter of fact, there are a lot of  tv announcers who are graduates of KeioUniversity,some of whom are quite popular like idols or actors . In Japan tv announcers, especially young female ones tend te be thought to be a “half – journalist, half-artist” . Ithink this tendency is going around because tv news shows tend to bore average viewers unless they have entertaining attractions. That’s why there are some announcers who are “ex-idols” or even “current idols” ,such as Rio HIrai and  Mao Kobayashi who got married this year.   In that sense Konno may be cut out for that  job as well as  utilizaing  experiences and connections that she accumulated as an idol. 

In the 12-year history of  MM,  there have been 25 members. And  8 members are incumbent and the other 17  have graduated. Some graduates are still successful as singers, tv personalities,  actresses but most of them have effectively retired from showbiz world having difficulty in maintaining their popularity once they are forced to dispose of  the shiny title of  “MM’s member”. Some successful graduates have married, such as Kaori Iida, Aya Ishiguro, Nozomi Tsuji, and Miki Fujimoto, some of whom are now popular “mama idols” having children. Yet even for those successful graduates, keeping “fresh, cute, and young” image which may be indispensable for an”female idol” is almost impossible.

   In that  kind of harsh situation,  the contrast of opposite type choices of  the newest graduate,  Kusumi whose one is maintaining or even growing  glorious idol style  as a  model,  and Konno whose one is quite steady or even conservative style though her showbiz background is very helpful, is so much interesting.  I want neither of  them to end up in failure on their new stages of career.  Hopefully, if  both Kusumi and Konno make big success,  they will be a hope for the current members of MM and their fans as bright and broad possibilities of  MM members’ future. Young idols’ life “as an  idol”  may be pitifully transient but  as long as “ex idols” or “graduated idols” can realize and prove such diversity of prominent talents in their “various” new fields to them, such “seniors’ existence”  is a  hope for idols and their fans. And even that MM may be regarded as a “good school or institute” to produce   highly talented professionals  for different fields.  I also do hope they work as stimulus for restoration of   shiny popularity of  MM and HP.

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3 Responses to “The career options of Morining Musume graduates”

Comment from Randy Nichols
Time 22/12/2009 at 01:29

Hello. I was reading someone elses blog and saw you on their blogroll. Would you be interested in exchanging blog roll links? If so, feel free to email me.


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Time 22/12/2009 at 02:38

[…] post: The career options of Morining Musume graduates | Tenkai-japan … December 21st, 2009 at 5:27 […]

Pingback from AKB48 set an astonishing record again~”Sakura no Shiori” hit the No.1 and something more at the Oricon Weekly Chart | Tenkai-japan: Cool Japan Guide – Travel, Shopping, Fashion, J-pop, etc.
Time 28/02/2010 at 02:11

[…] more popular than their were when they were incumbent  like I wrote  on a previous page.  On the other hand, AKB has been becoming popular by leaps and bounds nationwide […]

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