By Celina Mori
Ever dreamed about being a pop star as a kid? What if you can! The only catch is that you would have to work day and night with little to no breaks to perform everything perfectly. Well that the case with for some singers.
Many groups and artists from Asian countries have been making it big here in the U.S. such as EXO, Babymetal, BTS, etc. K-pop(short for Korean pop) for the past couple of years has received an international fanbase from all over the world. Sher Enriquez, a student at Brien Mcmahon, is planning to attend a K-pop concert in March. “Concerts held in the US sell out in minutes,” she declared.”I know that BTS sold out the first ten minutes of tickets being released and they were forced to add another show in New Jersey.” In fact, K-pop has become so beloved that K-pop companies have created schools in South Korea to train young people into becoming stars.
Yet the K-pop industry is not all fun and games. School trainees have to train for two to four years improving their vocal and dance skills, and take extra acting and foreign language classes. Many of the trainees are teenagers, which means that many of them also go to regular school, this can also pile up with the homework that the K-pop schools give them.
Even after working very hard, trainees continue to live in fear of not being able to make it as a professional singer, since there are numerous of other trainees that are equally talented. But that leads to the big question, why do so many people enjoy K-pop even when the singers are deeply pressured? Though the K-pop system is flawed, the work is widely cherished.
For starters, the music is catchy. Each song is different and it can range from different topics such as heartbreak, happiness , to even coping with loss.“I like the different varieties/concepts of music that the artists can pull off,” mentioned Makayla Hall, a tenth grade student. Not just that, but the choreography is mindblowing! The dance moves that they perform are complex and challenging, they require hours of practice! Another thing great about K-pop groups is that a group never has to break up. If a member of the group leaves to pursue something else, instead of having a fallout, the K-pop company can replace them with another star. Meaning that it will take a while before a group is permanently done performing.
Not making it is not the only thing K-pop stars have to worry about, in Japan the biggest pop star is not even real! That’s right her name is Hatsune Miku, a 3D projection of a 16 year old girl with blue pig tails. Stars like her are known as a Vocaloid? A vocaloid is vocal synthesizer that is used, by a user typing in lyrics and adding in a melody. The vocals of the synthesizer usually are provided by a voice actor. Miku is also not the only vocaloid, there are over 49 different vocaloids and they sing in different languages from Japanese, English, Chinese, and more.
Miku has gotten widely popular, she has collaborated with Pharrell Williams, was the opening act for Lady Gaga during her world tour, and is set to perform for the opening ceremony at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Japan.
Unlike K-pop star, Miku doesn’t need to train. What makes her so popular is that she basically runs on creativity. Meaning, anyone can buy her software and create songs from various types of music. Miku has over 100,000 songs created by her fans and are even performed in concert if popular enough.
Hatsune Miku was created by Crypton Future Media Inc. In August of 2007, her songs are currently uploaded to Youtube as each music video is created and drawn by a different artist.
Hopefully with the rise of Asian music, it will encourage listeners to check it out and see what all the buzz is about.