Nogizaka46 Idol Mai Shiraishi Will 'Graduate' From Group in March

posted on by Lynzee Loveridge

Nogizaka46 idol group member Mai Shiraishi announced on Monday that she will graduate from the group after the release of her latest single on March 25. The group's management will announce a graduation concert date and venue in the future. Shiraishi doesn't plan to leave show business behind her; following her leave from Nogizaka46 she'll continue acting and modeling.

The 27-year-old singer planned to see off her fellow idols Nanase Nishino and Reika Sakurai before announcing her own plans to leave. Shiraishi said she started thinking about leaving the group in 2018 and finally made the decision last summer. She's looking forward to watching the group's junior members grow as a fan. Both Nishino and Sakurai left Nogizaka46 last year.

Shiraishi is an eight-year veteran of the group. She said she considered leaving the idol group multiple times during her first two years but was always supported by her fellow idol members. During her time with the group, she starred as Queen Serenity in the new Sailor Moon stage musical, Maharu Miyaji opposite Nanase Nishino in the live-action film adaptation of Ai Kozaki's Asahinagu sports manga, and Akari Hayase in the Kamen Teacher television special.

Shiraishi was also a victim of death threats during her time with the group. A man was arrested in 2018 for sending her threats over the course of three years via Twitter.

Source: Sponichi Annex

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