iwata karen graduation 岩田華怜の卒業

Iwata Karen announces graduation

Here is an English translation of her announcement comment, explaining some of her reasons, as well as team member’s reactions.

Iwata Karen announced her graduation during the first theater announcement on January 5th, 2016.  In summary, she has decided to graduate in order to focus on acting.  Her graduation date is still unannounced.

Here is a translated transcript of the announcement from the theater performance (original Japanese transcript included w/ English translation):

“Please wait, please let me tell you something. I’m sorry. Excuse, please give me a little time.” (ちょっと待ってください。ちょっと、ご報告をさせてください。ごめんなさい、すみません。ちょっとだけお時間ください。)

“I, Iwata Karen, will graduate from AKB48”

At this point, audience members saying “Don’t stop!”

“Thanks. Thank you. There wasn’t any particular event that made me graduate; I’ve thought about graduation for a long time. There’s no feelings of hate or negativity about AKB48, it’s just the timing I chose to take a step toward realizing my dream.” (ありがとう。ありがとうございます。卒業は何がきっかけとかじゃなくて、自分の頭の中にずっとありました。それは決してAKBが嫌だからとかネガティブな気持ちじゃなく、自分の夢に向かって一歩踏み出すタイミングをうかがってたんだと思います。)

“Leading up to this graduation, I’ve consulted many people, thought about it a lot, and made my final decision.” (今回この卒業に至るまでたくさんの方に相談して、たくさん悩んで決断しました。)

“After my graduation, I feel as if I’ll be starting from ‘zero’, and I’ll pursue the studying of acting. In stage plays and dramas, I pray that I’ll have many opportunities to show you how hard I’m trying.” (卒業後はもうゼロからまたスタートする気持ちでお芝居の勉強に専念して、舞台や、願わくばドラマとかで皆さんに頑張ってる姿を少しでも多くこれからもお見せしていけたらなと思っています。)

“I haven’t decided at what time I will graduate. Well. It might be just a little bit, but with my remaining time as an AKB member, and with all of you fans, I’ll cherish each and every moment until the last, and do my best. Please, until the end, I hope you’ll keep looking out for me.” (卒業の時期はまだ全く決まっていないんですけど、そうですね、残り少ないというか残されたAKB48のメンバーとしていられる時間をファンの皆さんとそしてメンバーと一緒に一瞬一瞬を大切に最後まで頑張っていけたらなと思います。どうか最後まで応援よろしくお願いします」)

Karen also mentions it later on Twitter:

“I just made my graduation announcement.  It was a sudden announcement, and I’m sorry for the surprise. It’s a positive graduation, so I’d be very happy if you continued to support me until the end!  I’ll write something again later tonight.  In the meantime, time to do my best for tonight’s theater performance!”

Comment from Yokoyama Yui:

“I heard about Karen’s graduation directly from her.  Everyone has their own individual hopes and dreams.  I’m always surprised by each member’s resolve, but more than that, I’m always excited.  While we can, let’s make a lot of memories with AKB’s Iwata Karen.”

Lastly, a comment from manager Kayano Shinobu via 755:







“In today’s theater performance, Team A’s Iwata Karen announced her graduation. While spending her time here, the idea to pursue a new path grew stronger in her. She worried over it so much, and eventually decided to do her best and graduate from this group. Even as she graduates, I’ll continue to support Karen as she pursues her dream.”

Best of luck to Iwata Karen in her future endeavors.  She will definitely be missed.


Author: jerry

Sometimes editor. Sometimes translator. Mostly a proofreader. I like Japan and things.