I can honestly say my initial reaction to this news was one of disappointment and sadness. I am not sure if my mind formulated this or not but I do recall upon the announcement of the auditions for Reina’s band that it was said that there are no graduation plans imminent for Reina. I felt a slight sensation of betrayal from Hello Project. I felt as if they broke a promise.
Reina is the best main vocalist Morning Musume currently has in my opinion. Although Sayumi has improved quite a lot her singing still needs a lot of work. Riho is not a GREAT singer but still has the position of main vocalist. This makes me wonder as the sub-leader and main vocalist of Morning Musume leaves…who will take her place?
As being the next oldes 9th gen member after Reina I believe that Mizuki will obtain the sub-leader position. Mizuki is still at a very young and inexperienced age and giving her this position can either make her or break her. It is a really large risk.
As far as the main vocalist position goes I believe that there are many great candidates for this position. Masaki and Kanon have greatly improved in their vocal capabilities and newly-added member, Sakura, has an amazing voice! But with Reina’s departure will there be a more equal Morning Musume where there is an even line distribution between members? Will we hear more of the 9th and 10th generation? Only the future can tell.
As Reina leaves Sayumi will be the only remaining member from the Platinum Era and the only member with more than 5 years of experience. I believe this is an opportunity for the newer members to work even harder and gain even more experience so that Morning Musume will continue to run as an efficient girl group.
Even though I am quite saddened by this news I wish all the best for Reina and her new band. As I do with all idols that graduate I will continue to support her no matter what. She’ll always be a Morning Musume member in my heart.
Reina will be graduating at the end of Morning Musume’s spring tour in 2013.