The official website for idol group S/mileage announced today that member Ogawa Saki (14) is graduating from the group and from Hello! Project. Her last event with S/mileage will be their concert in Nagoya on August 27.
S/mileage just announced the addition of 5 sub-members earlier this month. Producer Tsunku revealed in late May that the group would be holding auditions for new members, and at the time, he mentioned that there was a possibility of a current member leaving. Although Tsunku had always planned to add members to the group, he stated that the move was accelerated by Ogawa’s departure, since she expressed her desire to leave the group in early May.
According to Tsunku, Ogawa said in early May that she had been torn about her future and consulted with the staff many times, but in the end she decided that she wants to return to being a normal middle school student and requested permission to quit.