On the heels of Nicole’s official departure, it is confirmed that Jiyoung will also be leaving Kara.
This could just be the nail in the coffin for the veteran girl group as DSP had this to say:
(Portion of the notification we received) – ‘Kang Ji Young will not extend her exclusive contract with DSP Media unless there is a new negotiation, we are officially informing you of this through this notice.’
However through the article that was released today, we have once again confirmed Jiyoung’s intent, and received word that she still wishes to leave KARA for schooling and to walk the path of becoming an actress.
Thus, starting after April, the team will reorganize with Gyuri, Seungyeon, and Hara as the center to carry on future schedules.
While DSP isn’t scrapping Kara completely, a trio of Gyuri, Seungyeon and Hara could find it difficult considering that the group really took off once they became the quintet that people are most familiar with now. K-Pop groups’ success hinge on the marketing and cult of personality of the idols as much, if not more than, the quality of the music and losing two mainstays in the course of a couple of months will be a serious blow to a group that seemed to be losing relevancy as newer and younger acts emerged (Kara going overseas probably accelerated that process). Kara could always add new members and continue on (as Kara itself had done with Jiyoung and Hara) but one would have to figure that their “window” of opportunity is closing fast. After pouring one out for Nicole, here’s one for Jiyoung. Long live “Mr.” and long live “STEP”.