Translating a string of articles about Maeda Atsuko’s appearance in Sapporo Dome..
Fans welcome Acchan back after 1 year, moves her to tears
Ex AKB48 center Maeda Atsuko made an appearance at AKB48 concert held in Sapporo Dome on the 31st July 2013. This is the first time she’s returning to the group since graduating one year ago. Once known as the “Eternal Ace”, her entrance drew Acchan calls from the 30,000-strong audience, moving her to tears as she said “Everyone, it has been awhile. This is Maeda Atsuko.”
After singing her solo songs like “Flower”, “Kimi wa Boku da”, she said “It is such a pleasure singing before you like this 1 year after my graduation. ” Fellow first generation members of AKB48 then joined her on stage. First to speak was Itano Tomomi, who hugged Acchan and said “Atsuko! I cried!”.
When Kojiharu asked her what she has been doing recently, Acchan replied “I’ve been putting on a wig”, referring to her participation in NHK‘s new period drama titled “Asaki Yumemishi ~Yaoya Oshichi Ibun“. Minegishi Minami said “This topic is like a knife to me.” Acchan asked teasingly “What did you do?”, drawing laughter from the audience.
Her 3rd solo single “Time Machine nan te Iranai” is also announced to be released on 18th September later this year.
Acchan’s response to returning to AKB48: “No thoughts about it.”
Qn: When you stood on stage, the “Acchan call” rose from the audience?
I was really happy and touched. Before i knew it, i could already hear the calls, it was a big surprise.
Qn: Were you uncomfortable at all thinking of coming back after graduation?
I didn’t think the audience would be cold, so i was looking forward to it actually. It was really kind of them to give me such a warm welcome.
Qn: Did you do any vocal training?
I was doing it all along. I’m afraid of doing badly, so i thought about properly preparing myself. I got a vocal trainer to help me on days when i have time.
Qn: In Fukuoka, Sashihara Rino sang your song “Kimi Ga Boku Da”, do you think you’ve lost to her?
I am the original singer so…LOL. But i’m happy that other girls sang my song. In today’s concert, the songs that i sang in a unit in the past was handled by Paruru(Shimazaki Haruka). If the songs can be continuously passed down, i’d be happy.
Qn: Who are the girls you’ve got your eye on recently?
Hmm…….there’s a girl who always comes to see me. Murashige Anna(HKT48). She visits me alone like its perfectly normal LOL. I find her rather cute. Also, Miruki (Watanabe Miyuki from NMB48) says she likes me alot. I thought she was lying at first, but it’s become somewhat convincing lately LOL.
Qn: Your new single “Time Machine Nan Te Iranai” is revealed before 30,000 people?
I’m really happy to have been invited to join this concert. I’ve lost the chance to perform in public ever since my graduation, and it’s hard to perform infront of so many people immediately. Even though this space is AKB’s and somewhat not very different, i’m happy that we can work hard together.
Qn: Did you know you were going to perform here before it was announced?
I also learnt it from the news! It was like “I can participate, yeah!”. I got mails from everyone, and because i didn’t know about it at all, i was really happy that everyone else was looking forward to it as well.
Qn: Do you feel like returning to AKB?
No! (Laughs) But i feel like walking forward with them!
Qn: Do you feel like singing “Flying Get”?
I don’t have any awkward feelings since i’ve gotten used to seeing songs with the center position being rotated amongst different members. Before this, in Fukuoka Dome, i was able to dance to the songs while watching together with Miichan(Minegishi Minami). It was actually quite enjoyable, but i’m starting to have difficulties keeping up. Songs like “Ponytail to Shushu” and “Everyday Kachuusha”, i’m already starting to forget the choreographies to some parts so i’m starting to feel lonely.
Qn: Are you continuing with drama shoots lately?
Yes. I was shooting through the night yesterday. I’ll be working hard alone tomorrow too.
Qn: Were you aiming for something with that “Wig” talk in the MC portion?
No, no! (Laughs) I was just talking about it from my perspective. When i realised it, it was linked to Miichan’s scandal. I’m glad she wasn’t wearing a wig today.