With tears in her eyes, Atsuko Maeda performed for the first--and last time--at Tokyo Dome as a member of all-female pop group AKB48 on Aug. 26.
Taking a curtain call at the end of the concert, Maeda appeared on the stage alone in a white dress.
After looking out at the audience for some time, the 21-year-old said, “To be honest, I’m feeling so sad, but this is the path I have chosen.”
After bowing for nearly a minute, she said, "AKB48 was all my adolescence.”
Maeda in March announced she was "graduating" from the group. She has recently increased her acting activities in TV dramas and films, but she did not specify her future plans.
Her final performance with the enormously popular group is on Aug. 27 at the AKB48 Theater in Tokyo's Akihabara district.
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