Ara is a Journalism graduate from California State University Northridge who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.
A photo of Haruka Kudo in a school uniform
Who is Haruka Kudo and how did she get into the entertainment industry?
Haruka Kudo is a Japanese pop music singer, stage actress and bikini model who was one of the members of the group Morning Musume 14 (Note: at the first draft of this writing, that was the name of the group.) She is one of the group’s youngest members. Haruka Kudo was born on October 27, 1999 in the northern city of Saitama. She made her entertainment industry debut in concert on May 1, 2010 at an event called Hello Fest in Odaiba Gurume Park Festival. For the purposes of this article going forward, we will say that Kudo was a member of Morning Musume because that is what the name of the group was when she joined them.
Haruka Kudo fails the 9th generation audition
Kudo took part in the audition for the group’s 9th generation of members but she did not pass the audition. Even though I had originally stated that the biography of former member Riho Sayashi would be my last biography of any current or former Morning Musume members, this writer has decided to include a biography of one of its other members because of the love for the group’s music. Kudo is in the group that now goes by the name of Morning Musume 21. So in spite of failing the 9th generation auditions, how did Kudo eventually join the group?
How did Haruka Kudo finally join Morning Musume?
Several months later in September 2011, Kudo appeared in De-View Magazine and she was interviewed along with the leaders from the groups Morning Musume, Berryz Kobo, C-ute, S/mileage, and Erina Mano. On September 29, 2011, Kudo would finally be selected to join Morning Musume’s 10th generation along with Haruna Iikubo, Ayumi Ishida, and Masaki Sato. These girls would be announced as members during a special concert that paid tribute to former member Ai Takahashi. So Kudo did not join the group as a result of auditions but I think when she looks back at her career, she will find this more than sufficient. It does not matter how you get to live your lifelong dream as long as you make it and get there.
Photos of Haruka Kudo from her first photo book called Do
Haruka Kudo: her stage acting work
As part of a Japanese idol’s career, they are sometimes selected to star in plays. In October 2011, Kudo would star in a stage play called Reborn Inochi no Audition with Risa Niigaki, Reina Tanaka, and the other 9th generation girls of Morning Musume. At this point, Kudo was 12 years old having starred in a stage play and joined one of the most popular musical groups in the world. Kudo would get another chance to work with Tanaka before Tanaka would graduate from the group. On April 18, 2012, it was revealed that Kudo would star in a stage play that is also a musical called Stacy’s Shoujo Saisatsu Kageki. The play would last from June 6-12 of 2012.
Haruka Kudo has fun with a cat
Haruka Kudo gets injured twice but still recovers
Later in 2012, Kudo would suffer a setback that would cause her to take a break from all activities with Morning Musume. Kudo said that she had been having pain in her left knee for a while. In spite of the pain, Kudo would still participate in the dance shot version of the song Wakuteka Take a Chance. On October 30, 2013, Kudo would take part in a birthday event with her friend and member Mizuki Fukumura. The event was called Fukumura Mizuki & Kudo Haruka Birthday Event 2013. The pair of girls would hold one event in Tokyo. On April 6, 2014, Kudo sprained her ankle during a concert with Morning Musume. She took part in the concert but she did not dance. She would later be in a wheelchair for a while. Unlike Aika Mitsui who graduated from the group due to her injuries, Kudo is still active and working.
Photos of Haruka Kudo from her second photo book and swimsuit photos
Trivia and Other Interesting Facts About Haruka Kudo
- Kudo is known as the tomboy of the group and called herself “the little brother” character of Morning Musume.
- Kudo’s Morning Musume audition number was 242.
- She has a husky sounding voice.
- Kudo believes that she can’t lose at anything because of her husky voice and sports skills.
- Kudo broke Ai Kago’s 11 year record by becoming the youngest girl ever to join Morning Musume.
- Aika Mitsui is so influenced by Kudo that she said if she had the chance to become another member of Hello! Project, she would want to be Kudo.
- Haruka’s name means far off or distant.
- Haruka Kudo is the first 10th generation member to release a solo photo book and a solo DVD.
- Haruka is scared of haunted houses.
- Haruka Kudo is the 2nd member in Morning Musume history to be the youngest member after another generation joined. Asuka Fukuda was the first one to do so.
- When Kudo was younger, her parents gave her many Morning Musume CD’s except for Ai No Tane which is treasured by her father.
- Kudo says that her biggest wish in life is to meet Eiichiro Oda, the creator of her favorite manga called One-Piece.
- Haruka Kudo is the youngest girl to ever make an appearance on the cover of Big Comic Spirits Magazine.
- She does not know how to cook very well.
- She can juggle though.
- Kudo says that if she were not in Morning Musume, she would want to be a Disney show dancer and a Disney cast member.
- Haruka Kudo is the favorite member of Sakura Oda. Sakura Oda was the only one to join Morning Musume as an 11th generation member.
- Since also becoming a member of Hello! Project, Kudo has been in at least one stage play each year.
Haruka Kudo: her photo books and other future plans
In addition to her work with Morning Musume 16, Kudo has also now released three photo books. Her debut photo book is called Do and this one was released when she was just 12 years old. It only sold 586 copies though. On October 10, 2014, Kudo held a release event for her 2nd photo book called Ashita Tenki ni Naare! The photo book was shot on the island of Okinawa and shows the full extent of Haruka Kudo as she says. Kudo also said that when she was there, she became hooked to Okinawan shallots and taco rice. Kudo revealed that she mistakenly thought that taco rice is rice with octopus. But taco rice is actually taco-flavored ground beef topped with rice it is an Okinawan specialty. Kudo even eats this in Tokyo now. Haruka Kudo joins an extensive list of Japanese celebrities that have released photo books. These are Ai Takahashi, Risa Niigaki, Yoko Mitsuya and many others. Kudo released her 3rd solo photo book on March 7, 2016 called Harukaze. Kudo revealed in November 2015 that she thinks she will be with the group ten years later. She also said that she may even become the group’s leader one day. If the future is any indication, if Kudo rises in popularity, this may just happen. Kudo finally graduated from Morning Musume in December 2017 following a concert at the venue Nippon Budokan.
Haruka Kudo sings her version of Morning Musume's 54th single
Haruka Kudo Announces Her Graduation Plans
Update: that ten year plan by Kudo is not going to come to fruition. On April 29, 2017, she announced during the Morning Musume concert with the theme of “The Inspiration” that she intends to graduate from Morning Musume 17. Her stated reason for the decision was so that she could focus on an acting career. She may also have a role model for herself as well. Kudo also said that one of her goals was to be able to reach the height of Suzu Hirose’s career and become an “asadora” or morning drama heroine. Note: Suzu Hirose is an actress and the fact that Kudo wants to be as successful as her really says something about her ambition.
© 2016 Ara Vahanian