First, thank you for your continued support.
It has been decided that, I, Reina Tanaka, will graduate from Morning Musume, as well as from Hello! Project at the end of next spring’s tour!
I have announced my graduation today on the stage in front of the fans and I introduced as well the 3 members of the band, I will now take off to a new stage!
I have been a 6th generation member of Morning Musume for almost 10 years and this year the group is celebrating its 15th anniversary. I think this is a turning point, a challenge for me to try another music activity, with the start of this band.
There is around 6 months left for me as a Morning Musume member, with the January Hello! Project lives in January and the next tour.
So please support Reina Tanaka as member of Morning Musume, which will sing in front of you and for my following activities as well!
As a devoted fan, I had a small inkling that this event was going to happen at some point in the future. I just thought at this point we’d have another year or two with Reina Tanaka still in Morning Musume, figuring that she’d get at least one album where she was he leader of the group.
Obviously, I look forward to her new project – in fact, I had been looking forward to it since it was first announced this past summer. But this is definitely a kick in the balls for fans like myself. I have been following Morning Musume since late 2003 and thus haven’t known a time when she wasn’t in the band. It’s just not what I was originally looking forward to.
Neither Reina nor Tsunku mentioned it in their messages to the fans this morning, but it was originally planned that Reina would be doing Morning Musume and her new rock-oriented group simultaneously. Apparently, her recent illness that forced her to sit out part of a promotional tour that was taking them outside of Japan made her give some serious reconsideration to that situation.
It kinda figures, though: I had finally devoted an episode of my radio show to Reina’s birthday, and this happens. My timing is fucking impeccable, huh?