Narumi Itano and Miyu Takahashi’s Konekone Club Teases Future Activity | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Narumi Itano and Miyu Takahashi’s Konekone Club Teases Future Activity

The "Konekone CLUB" was really formed after a statement made on a variety show! Tomomi Itano's real sister and sister-in-law put their bodies on the line to challenge the entertainment world--.

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“Unlike my sister, there are no restrictions!”

“Compared to my sister, we have no achievements or fame at all, so we want to use connections as our weapon to make people know more about us. Right now, that’s the only advantage we have. If Tomomi Itano won’t do something, I’ll do it all even if I have to put myself on the line (laughs).”

Speaking with a serious expression is Narumi Itano (28), the younger sister of former ‘AKB48’ member Tomomi Itano (32). Standing next to her, slightly shyly nodding, is Miyu Takahashi (23), the younger sister of Tomomi’s husband, Keiji Takahashi (26), who is a pitcher for the Tokyo Yakult Swallows.

Narumi Itano (left) was born in Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture in 1995. Her older sister is former AKB48 member Tomomi Itano. She made her drama debut in the 2014 TV series “Heisei Sarukani Gassen Zu” (WOWOW). Miho Takahashi (right) was born in Kameoka, Kyoto Prefecture in 2000. Tokyo Yakult Swallows pitcher Keiji Takahashi is her biological brother.

In January of this year, Tomomi Itano launched a new project called “RoLuANGEL,” aiming to produce her own proteges. Among over 2000 applicants, two were selected. Later, when Narumi appeared on the variety show “London Hearts” (TV Asahi), her co-stars sarcastically commented, “It’s definitely connections!” This sparked discussion on social media. Narumi immediately announced the formation of the unit “Konekone Club” proposed on the show, earnestly plotting to push their connections to the forefront. We asked them about their mindset during auditions and their future prospects.

Itano: “Actually, I applied for the audition without telling my sister. I’ve been active as an idol in the entertainment industry for about 10 years, and I felt like this was my last chance, considering my age.”

Takahashi: “I’ve always admired the entertainment industry since I was a child, but until recently, I was working at a regular company. If it weren’t for this audition, I think I would have given up on the entertainment industry. My brother also said he supports me, so I’m glad I applied.”

Criticism arose because two out of the nine members selected in the audition were sisters, both real and in-law. How did they feel about this?

Itano: “Certainly, even when I appeared on ‘London Hearts,’ I was constantly teased by the other cast members, saying it’s all about ‘connections’ (laughs). In my heart, I thought, ‘That’s not true,’ but it can’t be helped. After all, we’re participating in an audition involving family members.”

Takahashi: “I didn’t know Narumi was auditioning until the day of the audition, so if only one of us had passed, maybe we wouldn’t have received so much criticism, but being both accepted together does raise suspicion (laughs).”

Itano: “Don’t say that. Even my sister told me that Miho had a high chance of passing. I’m the one who ends up doubting the management (laughs).”

Takahashi: “I see. Then from the public’s perspective, they’ll doubt the connections even more.”

Itano: “But comedians always turn everything into comedy, so it’s amazing. When they make jokes like that, you can’t help but laugh it off.”

Takahashi: “Right after the recording, Narumi contacted me and invited me to join ‘Konekone Club.’ But after watching the broadcast again, I understood (laughs). There was no choice but to do it.” 

Revealing stories about her sister and activities related to her connections

After deciding to form “Konekone Cubl” immediately after the program recording, the two already have ideas about their future activities.

Itano: “We’ve just formed the group, so we’re still exploring, but we want to do things that only we can do. For example, maybe we’ll share some revealing stories about my sister, or reveal that despite appearances, I actually have a naive side.”

Takahashi: “Right now, I’m mainly streaming on TikTok, but since I played softball in junior high school, I’d like to engage in activities that increase baseball fans.”

Itano: “I also want to try jobs related to connections. Like kneading soba noodles or bread, what do you think? (laughs)”

Takahashi: “That sounds good. Since it’s called ‘Konekone Club,’ we’re looking forward to jobs related to connections.”

Itano: “Compared to my sister, there are hardly any off-limits ideas, so I’ll do anything.”

Takahashi: “As it’s my first year in the entertainment industry, I want to try everything. Modeling, baseball-related jobs, I want to do them all.”

Itano: “I actually want to be an actress and appear in movies or dramas. I want to become someone who can thrive in multiple fields.”

Although “Konekone Club” activities have just begun, it’s worth keeping an eye on how these two will make the most of this opportunity.

This unpublished photo: “Narumi Itano & Miyu Takahashi: ‘We’ll Do Anything with Our Connections as Weapons!'”
This unpublished photo: “Narumi Itano & Miyu Takahashi: ‘We’ll Do Anything with Our Connections as Weapons!'”
This unpublished photo: “Narumi Itano & Miyu Takahashi: ‘We’ll Do Anything with Our Connections as Weapons!'”

From the May 24, 2024 issue of FRIDAY

  • PHOTO Kazuhiko Nakamura

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