Nicole And Jiyoung Leave KARA For Solo Careers, KARA To Continue As a Trio

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Nicole and Jiyoung's future with KARA has been talked about for months, but now it's official: They're out of the band and going solo.

Nicole ended her activities with the popular girl group this week after her contract expired, while Jiyoung's father has confirmed that his daughter will be doing the same thing when her contract runs out in April.

KARA's agency, DSP Media, has already announced that KARA will continue promoting as a trio, which isn't a bad idea. KARA's one of the biggest Asian girl groups of the past ten years, but their popularity has rapidly declined over the past year or so -- relaunching as a trio might just be the perfect way for DSP to revamp KARA's image and make them interesting once again.

As for Nicole, she's heading to America for singing and dancing lessons in preparation for a solo album, while Jiyoung is planning to follow her ex-bandmate to the States to take some acting lessons and work on her English skills.

It's sad to see one of K-pop's top acts split in half like this, but it's also exciting to see what the future will hold for KARA 2.0. They've still got the star member, Hara, and the best singer, Seungyeon, so don't count the girls out just yet.