The 7th Toho Cinderella Audition was held on Sunday, setting a new record as 10-year-old Moka Kamishiraishi became the competition’s youngest grand prize winner ever. Kamishiraishi, a 5th-grader from Kagoshima, bested a field of 44,120 entrants.
Four special judge’s prizes were handed out this year, including one to Kamishiraishi’s older sister Mone (12). The others were Narumi Hayashi (14), Junna Matsushima (13), and Hirona Yamazaki (16).
This year, a "New Generation Award" was established, given to Ryo Ogawa (10) and Minami Hamabe (10).
The past Toho Cinderella Auditions were held in 1984, 1987, 1991, 1996, 2000, and 2006. The competition launched the careers of several stars, including Yasuko Sawaguchi, Maki Mizuno, and Masami Nagasawa.