Morning Musume ’18 member, Ogata Haruna will be graduating from Morning Musume ’18 and Hello! Project at the end of Morning Musume 18’s spring tour on June 19 and 20, 2018. An English translated announcement can be found here.
Haruna announced that she is leaving the group to focus on her tertiary education. She previously took an entrance examination in 2017, but sadly failed that exam. However, she persevered and took another exam for a junior college, which she passed. She will begin attending this college later this year and will work towards getting into a senior college. Therefore, she will graduate to prioritize her academic life.
This news came as a shock to me. While I was prepared for a Morning Musume graduation this year, I never thought it would be a 12th Generation member. It seemed like it was only yesterday when she joined the group. It has not felt like four years have passed. It is a bit sad since I was starting to love Haruna. She also began to shine in the group and was getting a lot of solo gigs and activities. If she stayed a bit longer, I am sure her popularity would have soared.
However, education is essential, and Haruna’s decision is understandable. While I am heartbroken, her dreams come first. I hope that would not be the last time we see her. The announcement was sudden, and we do not have much time left with her. I will cherish every moment that is left.
I hope that they release one last single before she leaves. I also hope that one of the songs in that single is centred on her. How cool would it be for them to have a Haruna-focused song with an ice skating concept?!
I do not usually predict graduations (I hate doing it), but I do expect another Morning Musume graduation this year. If I had to guess, it might be someone from the 9th or 10th Generation. My guesses are on Mizuki, Erina or Honey. However, with departures, there are also additions to the group. Who will be the lucky new members? That is a discussion for another post.
There are only two months left before Haruna’s graduation. It is not enough time for me to prepare mentally or emotionally but it is going to happen regardless. Haruna, I wish you all the best in your academic endeavours. As I noted before, I really hope that this is not the last time we see her. I really hope to hear from her in the future. Good luck!