SMAP, JOHNNY’S WEST to be! History and How to Join Johnny’s Jr.




Some girls become interested and would start to talk about boys when they are at elementary schools. Some would talk about boys in school, while others talk about boys on TV.


Johnny’s Jr. (ジャニーズ) are male entertainers who can dance and sing. They are very popular among young Japanese girls.



History of Johnny’s Jr.

Johnny’s Jr. are part of Johnny & Associates Inc. The company was founded in 1962 by Johnny Kitagawa.

Johnny & Associates focuses on training male entertainers. They used to have female entertainers but after 1985, no female entertainers have joined the company.


They would recruit and train boys on dancing and singing. Boys usually form a group and sell their songs.

Although most of Jonny’s Jr. dance and sing, some Johnny’s Jr. pursue their career as an actor and leave the company.




Who Founded Johnny & Associates?



Founder of Johnny & Associates is Jonny Kitagawa.

He was born in USA and stayed in Japan and USA during childhood. Since 1955, he has been living in Japan.


Early 1960s, Kitagawa was coaching a baseball team in Tokyo. One day he took 4 of his team members to see movie “West Side Stories.” It inspired and made them to create an entertainment company.


Johnny Kitagawa founded Johnny & Associates in 1962 and his sister, Merry, also joined the company.


How to Join Johnny’s Jr.

Johnny’s Jr. are formed by various male individuals. Some submit applications by themselves because they want to be a part of Johnny’s Jr.

Others don’t have intention to apply but their families or friends secretly submit applications and they join the company after passing the audition.

Candidates need to pass resume screening, interview and dancing. Once they pass the resume screening, Johnny & Associates would call candidates for audition.


Even after passing audition, it doesn’t mean boys would get job right away. Some start a career as Johnny’s Jr. right away, while others have waited for several months to a couple years.



Famous Johhny’s Jr. include SMAP, TOKIO, Johnny’s West, Kinki Kids, Hey! Sey! Jump, V6, Arashi and more… They have started singing and dancing at the beginning.

Some of them have started acting and become very popular on drama or movie.

When I think of Johnny’s Jr. Justin Bieber comes to my mind… because he is very famous and popular among young girls!


Depends on luck and timing, some debut soon, whereas others take time to debut.



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