Tag Archives: Takahashi Minami

Official cover of AKB48 Sousenkyo Guide Book 2015

1 May

This year’s Sousenkyo Guide Book features General Manager Takahashi Minami(24) as the center.

The positioning of members on this cover reflects predictions from the editiorial team and Watanabe Mayu(21) is expected to rank 2nd, followed by Sashihara Rino(22) in 3rd. The editiorial staff talked about how they came to this conclusion.

“She is challenging No.1 for the first time and her graduation this December has fans voicing their regret and support. This will be the most beautiful ending for her.”

Source


 

Well if you’re planning to purchase the 2015 Sousenkyo Guide Book then remember to act fast, because i remember this was sold out everywhere last year!

CDJapan: AKB48 Sousenkyo Official Guide Book 2015

 

Yokoyama Yui talks about succeeding Takamina “I’ll find my own General Manager style”

10 Dec

Translating this due to reader request…

Idol group AKB48 Yokoyama Yui(22) updated her Google+ on the 9th, one day after it was announced that she would be succeeding Takahashi Minami as the new Group General Manager of AKB48.

She revealed her thoughts about Takahashi Minami’s graduation announcement during the group’s 9th debut anniversary.
“Initially, I was confused when I thought about Takamina san not being with us forever.Takamina san loves AKB. It shows on her face when she’s thinking about the members. At this time we should face Takamina san’s dreams and give her a push from the back.
Takamina san has give us 1 year. The Soukantoku position is something that Takamina san built up. AKB48 is also what the seniors spent 9 years to create for us. We have to work hard for the next 10 years so we can see a beautiful scenery together. We have to carry these kind of feelings,” Yokoyama said.
Finally, she said “During this 1 year, I will learn what i can while the seniors are still around, and do what i can to find my own General Manager style with the support of my juniors. I am still lacking in many areas, but the support from fans will become my strength of overcome difficulties. Hoping that everyone’s dreams can be fulfilled. From now, please look after AKB48 group too.”

[Breaking]AKB48 Takahashi Minami announces graduation for real

9 Dec


AKB48 Group General Manager Takahashi Minami(23) has announced her graduation from the group on 8th December.

This announcement came while the group was holding their 9th anniversary live show at the theater.

“I, Takahashi Minami, will graduate on 8th December 2015. This notice comes one year in advance. I announced it at this time as i wanted make time for the member whom i will handover to.

The next Group General Manager will be Yokoyama Yui(21), ex-captain of Team A and currently captain of Team K.

“I just want to say 1 thing. This is not a sad thing. Next year’s our 10th anniversary. It’s an important year.I’m very happy that this group can last this long. This group is not something that ends after 10 years. I hope that it can continue to its 11th year. It’ll be alright. I will work hard with Yokoyama to bond the remaining members together.”

Takahashi Minami made her debut with the group on 8th December 2005 as a first generation member. She was appointed the Group General Manager to be in charge of the flagship branch and its sister groups in 2012. This year, she appeared on Fuji TV’s “Mecha Mecha Iketeru Dokkiri Special” to prank her team members into thinking she’d graduate due to a scandal. This time, her graduation announcement comes for real.
Takahashi, unlike previous centers Maeda Atsuko and Oshima Yuko, is the one and only member with a leadership presence in the group. Fans and members will certainly be shocked by this.

Source


 

An excerpt of the speech where she passes the baton to Yokoyama Yui.

After I am gone, I would like to name Yokoyama Yui as the person who would lead AKB48 Group as next Soukantoku.
Frankly, Soukantoku is a bothersome position. It is hard.
I think members close to me might have felt it too.
That is why I really hate that I have to pass the name of Soukantoku to my good friend, Yokoyama Yui.
I had wanted (this post) to end with me.
But, with a big group of girls like this, being distracted with lively conversations, not able to concentrate, unable to stay collected, there are many times like that.
At those times, I think there is still a need for someone in the group to speak out words like, “Let’s go, let’s do this”.
Can Yokoyama come here? (Yui stands beside Takamina)


To me, she is a wonderful junior.
She is really someone who is earnest but awkward at times, she works really hard with utmost effort.
Her dream is the same as mine too, solo debut.
By handing her this soukantoku post, it may keep this dream of hers at a further distance than it is now so I felt really troubled over it, but I think she needs an impetus.
Sounkantoku is agonizing.
But at the same time, there will be an increase in the amount of exposure to society’s eyes and simultaneously chances will increase.
With this, I want Yokoyama to think of it as a chance and do her best.

Credits to TKMN_WORLD


Member Reactions

Kojima Haruna: For AKB48’s 9th anniversary, there were only 3 of us from the first generation left. It was good that I could be next to Takamina during her graduation announcement. I will do my best so everyone can welcome our 10th anniversary. Please look after us from now on.


Mineshi Minami: With Takamina’s announcement, we must work even harder than before. So that AKB48G can continue to exist..


Miyazawa Sae: These are the first generation who love AKB48. The first generation who created AKB48. The Takamina of decided to graduate on the 10th anniversary. From now, we’ll also be the 48group that exists because of Takamina. I love the members from my generation but i also like the first generation. Thanks from the heart.


Oshima Yuko: Takahashi Minami graduation announcement at the theater.

Sashihara Rino: The news came in the middle of my tweeting. I don’t know what to say about this. Some people think I was aiming for the Soukantoku position but i don’t have much time left in the first place. #5thGenerationAge22 #NoResponsibility #NotAKB48member

Kashiwagi Yuki: Not feeling the reality of this.It seems like there’s 1 year left. Anyway, I want to support Yuihan.We still have to pay back to the fans.

Kitahara Rie: I also think there’s none other than Yokoyama. I’m worried about her physical/mental health but there’s no one else but her!

Yamamoto Sayaka: It’s a big shock. But there’s 1 year left, and lots to learn.I’ll work hard to support Yuihan too.


 

 

AKB48 members react to Takamina’s fake scandal on Mecha Iketeru Dokkiri Special!

7 Dec

Takamina enters a meeting room only to be informed that she will be participating in a Dokkiri(prank) special for Mecha x2 Iketeru. The idea is to trick her members into believing she has broken the love ban rule enforced for AKB48 members and will graduate from the group.

A panel of judges will be watching the members from another studio as the scandal is revealed. The member with best reactions and be elected to be the Dokkiri Center. To make things convincing, the production team even created a paparazzi shot of Takamina with comedian Okamura(who is the anchor for this show) to show the members.

The members will be shown this “paparazzi shot”, with a partially visible Takamina face. Okamura’s identity will not be revealed until one week later.


First up is Ikoma Rina and Watanabe Mayu. According to Takamina, as Mayu is the center of AKB48 and shoulders much responsibilities, she might show an irritated face immediately. Both were led into a room with hidden cameras where Shinobu(AKB48 Group General Manager) is waiting to break the news to them.
Shinobu: A certain person’s photo will be published in the weekly tabloid..Takamina.
Mayu’s face turns stiff while Ikoma looks like she wants to cry.


Mayu: The picture was taken with both in the same place?
Shinobu shows them the paparazzi shot.


Mayu analyzes the photo and doesn’t seem like she wants to accept this piece of news.


Mayu: What should we do?


Shinobu: Lets work hard from now..
Ikoma looks silently at Mayu. Mayu nods her head, smiles and leaves the room with Ikoma.
The judges notes that her face basically turned stiff.


Next up are Suda Akari, Matsui Rena, Matsui Jurina and Miyazawa Sae. Takamina comments that Miyazawa is very close to her and they are like comrades so she’d definitely feel shocked/betrayed.


Miyazawa: Is the photo taken recently or something from the past? Does Takamina know?


She bombards Shinobu with a flurry of questions, prompting the judges to guess that she likes scandals and is actually a gossip girl.


Young Jurina asks Shinobu how she should face Takamina. Instead, Shinobu asks them how she should tell the members. Akarin believes everyone wouldn’t think too much about it, as Takamina has done much for the group. Takamina is so touched she starts crying. Miyazawa also launched into a passionate talk, saying it’s a waste for Takamina to be destroyed by a scandal, as the 48 group exists because of Takamina. The judges were so impressed that they started repeating her lines.


As the girls leave the room, one of the judges says he wants to go for a drink with Miyazawa, as she’d probably give him advice on various matters. The caption in above pics describes her as a career woman in her 40s.


Next up is Shimazaki Haruka, Yokoyama Yui and Kawaei Rina. As usual they were shown the paparazzi shot.


Yokoyama questioned if the hooded person is really a guy. She even suspected the hoodie guy to be Miyazawa Sae.


Shimazaki wasn’t very interested in looking at the photo initially, until Shinobu shoved the phone in her direction. After taking a close look, she said “Just say it’s her brother.”


Yokoyama notes that in the photo Takamina and the hoodie guy isn’t even holding hands. Both her and Kawaei started impersonating Takamina’s posture in the photo, prompting Shinobu to say “Are you guys making fun of me?!”


Judges think that this group is enjoying themselves.


Paruru tells Shinobu to ignore it.


Kawaei grows restless and starts unbuttoning her jacket. Her comment “Just live the life you want.”
The judges are impressed with the glamorous phrases this group is coming up with.


Paruru adds the last touch with “I’m totally OK!”


Next up is the next generation aces Kizaki Yuria, Kojima Mako and Kato Rena. Takamina says Yuria is quite a rebel but has her passionate side, so she can’t foresee the reactions from her.


Yuria immediate reacts with a look of irritation. “It’s like…why this timing?”she says.
The judges notes with interest the way she drapes her jacket over her shoulders, like a diva.

Kizaki Yuria: It’s not like she was caught taking drugs.
The judges are amused by her level of analysis.


Kojima Mako: Well i’m fine with it.She’s been leading us so far. I always hoped that she can find a special someone.


Kizaki Yuria: Well everyone is different. So is Takamina. To have such a thing happen, she has to be prepared for it no matter what.
Judges note that she’s angry and scary, especially with the way she drapes that coat. (LOL)


Next up is these girls. I will just pick a few from them to translate.


Oowada Nana cries upon thinking that AKB48 will disband. She clears her nose heartily without caring about her idol image.


Takahashi Juri gets angry at the tabloid releasing this scandal.


Muto Tomu doesn’t want Takamina to shave her head like what happened in the infamous Miichan scandal.


Kodama Haruka thinks the person who was papp-ed is herself!


It’s now the variety veteran’s turn. They guessed that something’s up as soon as they sat down. When Shinobu broke the news to them, Sashihara didn’t want to see the pic but Kojima Haruna was all up for it.


The conversation quickly switched to girls’ talk as they commented happily on the mysterious guy.
Sashihara: He looks cool! She looks so happy!
Minegishi: She’s showing a woman’s face!


Shinobu says there might be more photos being leaked.
Sashihara the scandal veteran says with confidence, “There will be.”
Minegishi: Since she’s the general manager, she’ll feel alot of responsibility.
Sashihara looks at Minegishi: We are also very responsible people but we are quite pitiful right?
The judges started chiding them and questioned if they are really reflecting.


The conversation turns serious all of a sudden, making the judges laugh at their indecisiveness.
Minegishi: You become afraid of standing infront of people after a scandal.
Sashihara: The fans are pitiful, but Takamina is a girl so asking her to refrain from love is not right.
Minegishi: We didn’t know anything..but Takamina’s fans are kind right?
Sashihara: I think if he’s not a strange guy…like Johnny’s or SMAP, then *claps furiously*


Kojima Haruna didn’t have much airtime here but she ended the session asking Shinobu to send her the photo. (No doubt so she can spread to everyone!)


Next up is Moriyasu Madoka, Miyawaki Sakura, Shiroma Miru, Yamamoto Sayaka.


Sakura is in great shock and is quite a sight to watch.


Yamamoto Sayaka: She’s the central figure of the group so this is bad.


Madoka reveals that Kojima has been dropping hints in the changing room, saying “Takamina is also a girl.” I also saw some netizens concluding that Kojima is quite a blabbermouth.


Sakura starts crying. What in the world is she thinking?
The judges think they should have aimed the dokkiri only on Sakura alone.

Part 1 of dokkiri ends here. The members will have 1 week to digest this news before Part 2 is executed. How will the members interact with Takamina in the meantime?


One week later…

Takamina confesses the atmosphere has been quite bad the whole week. She had expected Kojima Haruna to talk to her but the members seemed to be used to scandals so they were quite indifferent. Only Miyazawa Sae approached her saying she wanted to talk over a meal.

Part 2 of dokkiri focuses on Okamura revealing himself as the boyfriend. He will pretend to be working next door in the same studio as AKB48, but will drop in on the members to offer his apology.


Takamina makes her entrance after the staff told members that Takamina wanted to apologize to them.


Takamina starts shedding tears as the members watched on with serious faces. Takamina informs them that her scandal partner is also working in the same studio and will be coming in to apologise.


A wave of badly concealed giggles all around as Okamura walked into the studio. Judges shouted at them to stop laughing.


I wonder how Takamina/Okamura can continue acting like this, but Okamura keeps his cool and continues with his speech seriously. The members also turn serious. After a while, staff appears to remind Okamura that he has to continue filming next door.

Takamina/Okamura repeat this with the younger senbatsu members but most of them simply kept a serious face throughout.


The final apology session is aimed at the veteran trio Kojima Haruna, Sashihara Rino and Minegishi Minami.


The trio didn’t want a formal apology and moved their chairs closer to Takamina. Then Takamina starts her tears attack and the trio started listening closely. When Takamina informed them that her boyfriend is someone whom they’re also indebted to, Sashihara started making guesses from T.M Revolution’s Nishikawa to Kinki Kids’ Domoto Tsuyoshi.


Okamura then makes his entrance and of course, the trio started squealing and laughed louder than anyone.
Sashihara: Don’t talk with a sigh!
Minegishi: Why are you here?Why?
Okamura could not continue as the trio shouted “NO!!!”


Kojiharu: Didn’t you always talk badly about us?
Sashihara: You’re kidding. Are you serious?
Okamura: Yes. We have the filming for Mecha Ike and Domoto Kyoudai on the same day. And Takeda kun introduced us….

As the talk goes on, the trio are convinced that this couple is real.


Takamina starts talking at some point. Seeing that she’s crying, Okamura puts a hand on her shoulder.


The trio gets worked up and ask him to stop touching Takamina infront of them. Minegishi ends the talk telling Takamina to at least be cheerful infront of the juniors. She also asked Takamina why her taste in men changed, as she used to look for tall, pretty guys.


Part 3 of the Dokkiri will see the members recording for a fake variety show where members will be asked about their ideal types.


When asked who can accept a man in his 40s, Takamina raised her hands. “I’d feel more settled this way,” she said. Her members were no doubt thinking about Okamura at this point, generating much laughter amongst the judges.

Second question was “What’s your preferred height for men – tall or short?” Of course, Takamina chose short and the members’ faces turned blank once again.


The last question was “Amongst these comedians, who would you choose to spend Christmas Eve with?” You can actually see Okamura getting votes from Kojiharu and Sashihara at this point. But when asked why, there was a moment of awkward silence.

Sashihara even gave a very weird explanation “Rather than a positive person, someone who’s slightly negative is good.”

Takamina expressed her love of Okamura with “I think i’ll be able to laugh daily because of him. I like being supported like that.”

The corner ended with AKB staff stopping the recording suddenly.


Part 4 of the Dokkiri(also the final part) takes place on the 8th day where the members have to attend a fake press conference announcing their movie release.

150 odd press members(fake) were invited to the press conference to make things convincing.


As Watanabe Mayu stepped up to introduce the movie, Takamina barged into the press conference hall and took over the microphone from the MC.

“Sorry for the intrusion. I am AKB48 Group General Manager Takahashi Minami.I was not supposed to be here, but i came to tell everyone something. I, Takahashi Minami, will graduate from AKB48.

I’m supposed to lead everyone, but i’ve caused everyone trouble through my actions.Even if i am not here, there is future for the group.

I hope everyone can protect AKB48. I hope the members can grab the chance to shine. I think Sakura is grabbing that chance now. Because of your nervousness, there are times when your weaknesses show on stage. But if you continue to keep being professional, you’ll be fine.

Mayuyu is a 100/100 idol. However, I hope you can depend more on your members.

Sayanee is too great. You can do anything. I really respect you even if you’re my junior.

Sashihara, i have nothing to say. I’m kidding. I think i talk to you the most about work. Even though we’re not in the same generation, i think of you as my comrade.Please work hard.

Miichan and NyanNyan, i have nothing to say to you. My only regret is not being able to see you graduate.

I didn’t think i’d be saying goodbye in this manner.”

The reporters then flocked in to question Takamina. “Do you think you’re taking responsiblity by graduating?”

“No, I’m really sorry!”


Takamina grabs the wig off her head only to reveal her shaved(fake) head!


All the members could not hide the shock from their faces.


At this point, Okamura also barged into the press conference to stand alongside Takamina.
“I, Okamura, will marry Takahashi….NOT!”



The last of this dokkiri ends with the members being thrown backwards into a pool of styrofoam.


The judges make their appearance to reveal the truth about this dokkiri. They also cast the last votes to choose the Dokkiri Center.

Here is the chosen Dokkiri 7:

7. Kizaki Yuria(3 votes)
The only one who got angry because of the scandal.
Staff comments: Isn’t she prepared to face up to her own scandal too? (Referring to Yuria’s talk about everyone needing to face up to their actions.)
Yuria: I really hate scandarals. (Unfortunately, she’s quite an airhead and pronounced it wrongly.)


6. Minegishi Minami(6 votes)
Her comments brought on quite abit of variety impact.
“In the past you liked tall and pretty guys, but in the end you settle with this type..”
Okamura: I was pretty hurt by it.


5. Owada Nana (8 votes)
Her tears made the judges want to tell her the truth immediately.


4. Nakano Ikumi (9 votes)
Her innocent reaction towards the end made a deep impression on the judges so her votes skyrocketed.


3. Miyazawa Sae(10 votes)
Her gossipy character amidst being worried about Takamina made a deep impression.
Judges: Your nickname amongst us is gossip girl. You really like scandals right?
Miyazawa: No!!
Judges: You have a NG word (name of a certain tabloid) which was repeatedly brought up for 24 times. But we will delete all of it during editing. You were also the only one who expressed concern for Takamina during this week. That’s really kind.
Another Judge: But is that kindness or you wanting some gossip?!


2. Miyawaki Sakura(12 votes)
Her open mouth throughout the dokkiri made an impression. But there was something which put her in a negative light.
Judge: Your tears made us think that you were a good girl. We thought you were crying because of Takamina. But we heard that you were crying as you asked the staff “Will the single i center be cancelled?”
Others: That’s scary! Shock!
Sakura: I heard that the news will be out on the release date of the single. I was thinking..if the sales drop, will it become my fault?


1. Takahashi Minami (no votes announced)
Okamura: Your acting was superb. How many times did you cover for me? If not for you, how much of a failure will this be? When i revealed myself, think of how the members laughed! I thought i couldn’t do this project anymore! Indeed, it’s because of your tears that i was able to get around it.Shouldn’t we give her the lead actress award?


Takamina: Are you pranking me? This is my first No.1! But really, i thought it was really tough at one point!
Okabe: She was rehearsing initially and she cried….saying her members are pitiful.
Takamina: I’m sorry!


And this wraps up the episode! I didn’t find this as funny as the previous collaborations but definitely interesting since we get to discover new sides to the members. For example, Miyazawa is surprisingly dependable. From her talk, i can tell that she’s the kind who will offer a good listening ear. If not for her age, i think she’d be perfect as the next General Manager. Kojimako is such a sweet girl, saying she’s always wished for Takamina’s happiness. Sakura strikes me as selfish what with her concerns about people blaming her in case the CD sales drop. Yuria..i have mixed thoughts about her. She seems like a girl with the right values and all but rather unapproachable.

Watanabe Mayu surpasses Sashihara, wins AKB48 6th General Elections

8 Jun

On the 7th June, the results of AKB48 6th General Elections(6th Senbatsu Sousenkyo) were unveiled in Ajinomoto Stadium. 80 members out of the 200+ member mega franchise were selected to represent the group in their next single. Of the 80, the top 16 will be able to sing the title track and take part in various media promotions. Check out the list of winners here.

Whilst 2013 winner Sashihara Rino had her sights on defending her title, it was 3rd generation member Watanabe Mayu(20) who did the impossible. Amassing the highest amount of votes in history(~160k votes), her victory was a happy ending fans have been waiting to see for years. Read on for the Top16’s winning speeches below.

1. Watanabe Mayu – the ace who got crowned late


“I said in my speech 2 years ago, that i wanted to win. I wasn’t able to realise that dream last year, despite all the hard work i put in. For a moment, i decided to give up. But fans gave me warm words, told me to grab my next chance. That strengthened my resolve to become no.1.

I joined AKB when i was 12, today i’m already 20. To get where i am today, i experienced alot. I am happy to have walked my path, believed in my fans, worked hard and not give up. When i joined AKB, there were alot of seniors. New juniors came in, sister groups were formed. Over time, the seniors whom i respect have graduated. I often wonder..what happened to the AKB48 that i knew in the past? As one of the leftover members from the 3rd generation, i have to stay strong and look forth. In the past, i followed the seniors around. Now that I have gotten this position, i have to stop leaning on the seniors. I want to become a member whom the juniors can look up to and follow, someone who doesn’t forget her initial passion, and is full of gratitude towards the fans.

To everyone, thank you!”

When asked what she had to say to Sashihara, Mayuyu teared up at one point and said, “Sasshi has gone through alot. Seeing her lead the HKT48 members, she has worked really hard. I want to say congratulations to everyone, and thanks too.”

Exiting member Oshima Yuko also made an appearance, congratulating Mayuyu on her win. When asked to give some advice, Yuko said “This is not advice, but in many ways, please take care of AKB48 from now on.”

Mayuyu confessed, “Yuko chan had wanted to entrust the AKB48 group to me 2 years ago,but i was unable to live up to expectations. Today, i’m happy i can finally answer to her request.”

 

2. Sashihara Rino – hopes for a winning streak crushed



“Honestly, i’m very frustrated. Awhile back, i overheard a conversation at this bookshop. An office lady was asking her friend who might win this elections. The friend answered ‘Sashihara’, but the lady said ‘If she won, wouldn’t it be weird?’. That lady also said ‘If Sashihara can win, then i should enter AKB and live a easy life.’. If that lady is watching this now, i want to tell you that AKB is not a easy place. Alot of members worry before coming here. Even though i still don’t know who’s going to become No.1, i will support that member with all my strength. No matter how tough it may be, i will not lose. I will participate in next year’s Sousenkyo, and i will certainly become No.1!”

 

3. Kashiwagi Yuki – the girl who doesn’t need to aim high

Kashiwagi Yuki is one of the rare members in AKB48 who has gained high recognition amongst fans despite never voicing her desire to rank high. In 2011, she surpassed same generation teammate Watanabe Mayu to take No.3 in the 2011 Senbatsu Sousenkyo, and has since kept a consistent ranking. This year is no different.

“I am very happy to be in Top 3. This Sousenkyo is not just a place to decide the center, it’s also a place where we can fight alongside our fans. I am not good with vying for things. But I can work hard because the fans are here. At first i only wanted to be an idol, but i have now become someone who wants to support the fans through songs and live shows. Last year, i said that AKB has become an important place for me.The handshake sessions are also an important place for me.  Today, i also want to show you my gratitude up close. There may be problems, but i don’t want to lose this place where i can interact with you directly. If you guys are here, i’m sure a warm place will be created for us. This year i am in NMB48 and have gotten alot of juniors, i will work hard as AKB48’s 3rd generation and repay you. Please support me!”

 

4. Matsui Jurina – 17 years old and aiming for No.1

c2b3809a.jpg (1440×810)

Matsui Jurina has been really ambitious since placing 6th in Sousenkyo last year. Considering her tenure in the group and her ranking, she is ready to battle for the throne. But looking at her disappointed frame, it’d be better if she develops some mental strength before coming back as the competition will get tougher next year.

“Even though i am very thankful, I feel frustrated not having ranked No.1. But i think it’s all my fault, i haven’t worked hard enough. Please let me make a promise with you. I will work harder than ever. Next year, when i turn 18, i will be No.1!”

 

5. Matsui Rena – a flourishing solo career and still flying high

As a fellow teammate of Matsui Jurina in SKE48, Matsui Rena has always been neck-to-neck with Jurina during Sousenkyo. This year she confessed to being worried about her placement, since her solo career has been impeding group activities. No wonder she was so happy when her ranking was called.

“I’m very happy to see so many of you here today, despite the heavy rain. Thanks for the support. Not only me, but alot of the other members have bet their lives by standing here, choosing a lifestyle different from that of a schoolgirl. I have the confidence to bet my life here, and work actively in the 48group, as well as in Nogizaka46. Just like how u guys have given me this present today, i will work hard to gift you the same present in future. This year, SKE will be doing a nationwide tour. Please wait for us!”

 

6. Yamamoto Sayaka – Osaka representative with overflowing ambitions

“This year, people have had expectations of me ever since the prelim results, some even guessed that i would win. On the other side, others have said it’s too early for me to win. I am really honored to have gotten this rank, but i’m really frustrated about not being able to refute those who said it’s impossible for me to win. When i entered senbatsu last year, i was able to work more and enjoyed every day. This time i am the only one from NMB48 to be called into senbatsu. I really love NMB48 and want to bring it to greater heights not only in Japan but also overseas.Last year, i said i wanted to be more active in my media work but i am sorry not have delivered the promise. My hopes to lead the group and become number 1 has never changed since i entered the group. I want to become someone worthy of the absolute center by next year. Please support me”

 

7. Shimazaki Haruka – ‘I am blunt but you will forgive me’

The member nicknamed “Ponkotsu Paruru”(Clumsy Paruru) is infamous for her blunt and less-than-friendly personality. Her army of fans continue to remain devoted by pushing her into Top 7. However, don’t expect her to contend for No.1 anytime soon. She works at her own pace.

“I don’t know what to say honestly. I am bad at this. People say i’m salty but having attained a great rank like this, i feel somehow satisfied instead. I tried to work hard at handshake sessions, but as expected i can’t do it. My fans always try to make me laugh instead. I think my fans are kinder and more forgiving than others. That’s the end! Thank you!”

 

8. Kojima Haruna – ‘I will graduate..’


The last beauty from the 1st generation apparently knows how to twist her fans around her finger. Talk about her graduation has been going on for months, so is it time?

“As usual, my prelim rankings isn’t good, but as usual the fans will always work hard for me towards the end. I am really happy. I don’t have any more regrets in AKB…I, Kojima Haruna, will announce my graduation here…..but i won’t! Sorry for the joke haha! I actually wanted to graduate here, but looking at the stabbing incidents recently, i think i will do what i can and stay on awhile more. I will graduate when everyone can smile from the bottom of their hearts. There is one more reason. When i looked on the internet, i was No.1 on the rankings for member most likely to graduate in the elections. I didn’t want to let that report come true, so i pulled back. I too, want the fans to be surprised when I announce my graduation. So please don’t spread rumors of graduation during big events like this. I don’t know how long i have with AKB, but i will work hard to the end.”

MC continued to asked when she started to consider graduation.

“I started to think about it when Acchan graduated. This time round, when the costume for Labrador Retriever was handed over…i am 26 but when i saw the dog prints, i thought ‘omg it’s about time’…LOL.”

MC asked her to declare her lifelong career as an AKB idol.

“That’s not going to happen! I’m just going to work abit more..”

 

9. Takahashi Minami – Hard work will definitely be rewarded


“This year i asked to be ranked within Top7. Even though i wasn’t able to reach that goal,i thank all of you from the bottom of my heart. As you know, recently a bad thing happened. At that moment,i thought AKB48 was over. I wasn’t unable to cheer up for days.Because of the fans my heart grew stronger. Even on such a rainy day, you guys are willing to wait for us. Because of you we are able to move on. There are people who asked me why i’m still here. I’m here because i love AKB48. AKB48 is the best! There’s a big challenge infront of us. If everyone is here, i think we can overcome this. Please let me support AKB48 a little while more.  Finally, let me say the words which i wasn’t able to say last year. Hard work will definitely be rewarded!”

 

10. Suda Akari – I’ll shine from any position


Suda Akari has the brightest smile amongst all the members and is so professional she smiles even when the camera is not on her. She is known for being a “fisher”, kind of derogatory for a girl but over the years I can really see the sincerity in her. Still, i’m not used to her over enthusiastic personality.

“I am not good at talking. When i googled my name, people say i’m not cute at all. I can’t imagine saying that to a person who got so many votes. Last year, i got into into Top16 due to the help of everyone. After getting  Top16, i was even able to move up front within SKE. I wonder if that was a good thing, and cried everyday. Some have questioned why i am up front. But still, i left an impression on them isn’t it? In future, in order to become the center in your eyes, i’ll work hard to shine from any position.”

She cried at the last part because she thought she’d never rank in senbatsu again.

 

11. Sakura Miyawaki – My rival is Sashihara


Sakura is probably the only member in HKT48 who has a fanbase so strong that she doesn’t need to rely Sashihara’s help. She hailed Sasshi as her rival, but as the original ace of HKT48, she should probably challenge the beasts of sister groups Jurina and Sayanee instead.

“I’m really shocked to receive this rank. I’m always nervous, but the fans are always here for me. If you guys aren’t here, there won’t be me. Someone asked me who my rival is. I can only think of one. My rival is Sasshi. She is all-rounded. I think that if there’s no one who can surpass Sasshi in HKT, then there won’t be growth. I am still not there, but i will work hard so Sasshi can call me as her rival. I’ll show you that i can surpass Sasshi!”

 

12. Miyazawa Sae – A formidable presence despite zero TV appearances


“Thank you! This year has been an unforgettable year! I met alot of people…experienced alot of feelings. I’m really thankful for it. Again, i want to be a source of strength for many in AKB48. To be able to stand on this stage, i feel very happy. I want to repay everyone, and I hope to show the juniors my cool back!I am also happy to be featured on the LINE stamps!”

 

13. Yokoyama Yui

-Skip translation because it’s kinda boring-

 

14. Ikoma Rina – Shocker of the night

As the former center of rival group Nogizaka46, Ikoma was offered a concurrency with AKB48 in February. She accepted it thinking of creating more opportunities for Nogizaka46. No one thought that she’d go far in these elections, but the Nogizaka fans are obviously hungrier that we thought. Catch the priceless expression on her face when her ranking was announced. Even exiting member Oshima Yuko was amazed by it.

“Do you know me? Oh, that’s great, thank you very much! Um… I-I-I never thought, e-even a tiny bit, that I would enter senbatsu, so when I heard just there “Nogizaka’s…” I didn’t know what to think and I still don’t know what to do. But… ah… um…. um, the reason that I’m here is that my fans supported me in all sorts of places, making and handing out flyers, cycling all the way to their home towns, even to places I don’t know, they did all that hard work for me. Members… well, I’m here on a concurrency from a rival group so this surprised a lot of people and no one really knows how this is going to go. But now I feel glad I went through with it… thank you very much. There’s a lot of people I feel grateful to. But I think there’s also a lot of people in Japan who don’t know who I am. I want to take this opportunity for, well for myself as well but I’m from a group called Nogizaka46 and I want to work hard in order to get more people to know who we are! Thank you very much!”

 

15. Shibata Aya – Another cinderella story


Shibata Aya is one of the cinderella girls in this year’s senbatsu. She is not favored by management but moved into the limelight last year due to fan support. She placed 17th in last year’s general elections and has since been included in the senbatsu lineup for SKE48’s singles.
“Last year, i experienced alot after placing 17th in the elections.I felt very blissful becoming an idol. But seeing the difference between 16th and 17th positions, i felt frustrated realizing what entering senbatsu is all about. This year, i promised to enter senbatsu and is finally able to have that dream come true together with the help of my fans. I won’t waste the chance from the fans. I will work hard to aim higher.  I like the saying ‘If you don’t aim for No.1, you won’t become 2nd or 3rd.’,so i will become everyone’s No.1 idol.”

 

16. Kawaei Rina – A bounce back from adversity


The baka center had a poor placement in the preliminary results of this year’s sousenkyo despite receiving much push the past year. The recent stabbing incident threw her back into the spotlight as she was one of the 2 injured, together with Iriyama Anna. I don’t know if it helped to get her sympathy votes but the girl definitely hopes it was not the case.

“I’ve worried everyone! I am very healthy now. Honestly, when i was ranked 52 in the prelim results, i had been worrying and crying every day. When i was thinking of what to do, this incident happened. I think God was telling me to stop waiting around and to wake up. I think everyone converted my adversity into a chance for me. In this year, i will not lose no matter what happens. Thank you.”

MC asked if she was afraid during the stabbing incident. Kawaei said, ‘It’s ok! I wasn’t afraid!”

“Actually i was thinking i shouldn’t care about the results anymore. But the fans created this great position for me. Thank you!”

“This year i had done alot and had no regrets, so i was really afraid of the sousenkyo results this year. But now i am no longer afraid!”

“This time, i entered senbatsu because fans had expectations of me and were worried for me. Next year, i hope to enter senbatsu without the help of any adversities!”
__________________________________________________________________________________________________
And this concludes my translations for their speeches.

Maeda Atsuko and Takamina on Domoto Brothers

16 Mar

The retired ace of AKB48 Maeda Atsuko reunites with Takahashi Minami to talk about their friendship. They also sang a nice version of “M”, a song from 1980s group Princess Princess. I personally feel that their voices match well. They should have formed a unit before Acchan went solo.

Live Performances from Ongaku no Hi

30 Jun

This is an annual music program from TBS that brings together the greatest idols/bands/artistes. Hosted by SMAP’s Nakai Masahiro, this year’s “Ongaku no Hi” will last for as long as 13 hours, making it the longest running music program ever.It is currently broadcasting live in Japan and performances are being uploaded as we speak, so check back to see your favourite artistes!

Disclaimer: As there are too many artistes, i will only post selected videos


AKB48 32nd single – Koisuru Fortune Cookie(In Love with Fortune Cookie)
It’s still 1.5 months away from AKB48’s 32nd single release so i was quite shocked to see them perform it way in advance. Anyways, this is the song that features Sashihara Rino as the center after she won AKB48 5th General Elections. Right away, i felt uncomfortable seeing her as the center. It doesn’t help that the song choice is kind of retro, and ….just not AKB style. I’ll leave my comments in my next post.


AKB48 – Flying Get/Gingham Check


AKB48 – Tenohira ga Kataru Koto


Watanabe Mayu – Rappa Renshuuchu( Practicing my Trumpet)


Kashiwagi Yuki – Shortcake


Takahashi Minami – Jane Doe


Itano Tomomi – 1%


NMB48 – Nagiichi / Bokura no Eureka


SKE48 – Uzukushii Inazuma


HKT48 – Suki!Suki!Skip!


Yamashita Tomohisa  – Daite Senorita/Summer Nude ’13


Nogizaka46 – Oide Shampoo/Girls Rule


Perfume – Magic of Love/Mirai no Museum/Laser Beam


Nishino Kana – Believe/Kimitte/Watashi Tachi


Golden Bomber – Dance My Generation/Memeshikute


ABC-Z – Song Medley


Sexy Zone – Bad Boys/ Real Sexy!


Kis-my-ft2 – Everybody Go/Kimi to no Kiseki


SMAP – Battery/Bang!Bang!Vacance/Mae Ni


Kubota Toshinobu – La la la Love Song/Corcovado


EXILE Atsushi-  Furusato