The K-Pop industry has become a huge success and has been heavily commercialized. It has launched Korean music and entertainment on a global scale. And the lives of K-Pop artists are very interesting and difficult at the same time. The carefully curated public images that they have to maintain are very important to their careers. And becoming an idol requires a lot of hard work, dedication and passion. Stage names have become an integral part of any artist’s life and success. And K-Pop artists heavily use stage names.
Do K-Pop Stars Change Their Name?
K-Pop has become one of the most famous entertainment industries. And there are many hidden truths behind the fame and glamour of K-Pop Idols. Becoming a K-Pop idol is not easy at all. Anybody wishing to join the industry has to go through a lot of training in dancing, singing, and other stuff before they can perform on stage. They are bound by contract to maintain a carefully curated persona for fans and the public and go by it. In many instances, this also includes changing their name to adopt a catchy and cool stage name.
Almost all K-Pop artists have a unique stage name to differentiate themselves from others. However, many of them often adopt this stage name as their official name. There are many reasons behind K-Pop idols changing their names, it could be personal or professional. But it is very common for people in this industry to change names. The K-Pop industry is very different and one of the first industries that not only commodify a band but the artist as well.
If you are chosen to debut after a rigorous training period, then the record label sets up a persona for you. And maintaining that persona in front of the fans and paparazzi is a must for any K-Pop Idol. When creating this persona, includes maintaining a certain dressing style, and attitude and even changing their name. All of this is done to draw in more fans and to sell the image of a band or artist as a whole.
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The Trainee System
The modern concept of the Korean pop music industry has been set up first by SM Entertainment. It is a very unique system. Every year thousands of youngsters audition for different entertainment companies in the hopes of becoming a K-Pop idol. Once they complete auditioning and are selected, they have to undergo a rigorous training system. In this trainee period, they are trained in dancing, music, vocals, language, attitude, and a lot more things.
This period often lasts from a few months to several years. The trainees are even supervised on their personal lives, looks, and physical condition. This system is highly criticized worldwide as many of the trainees’ mental and physical health has been affected by this. The very strict body and weight restrictions have often led to trainees requiring plastic surgery, rigorous weight loss training, etc. Even though highly criticized, the K-Pop industry and the trainee system remain one of the highest-grossing industries in the world.
Some K-pop Idols Changed Their Names
Let’s have a look at some of the biggest and most successful stars in the K-Pop industry who did change their names. One of the members of the girl band TWICE, Jihyo was formerly known as Park Jisoo. But she chose to change her name to Jihyo to promote her career and image as a K-Pop idol. Another member known as Jeongyeon was initially named Yoo Kyungwan. But as the name sounded too masculine, she changed it for her career.
Next comes the internationally recognized band BLACKPINK, in this, who is now popularly known as Lisa, was born as Pranpriya Manoban. She changed her name to Lalisa Manoban before the start of her career. Most of the members of the phenomenal boy band BTS have changed their names as well. Min Yoon-gi was the former name of the famous rapper Suga, while J-Hope was known as Jung Ho-Seok, Kim Nam-Joon was the former name of RM, and Kim Tae-Hyung was the former name V.
Other famous K-pop Idols who changed their names include Oh My Girl’s Arin who was born Choi Ye Won, Pentagon’s Yeo One who was formerly Yeo Chang Goo, Red Velvet’s Yeri is a play on her original name Kim Ye Rim, Cosmic Girls’ Seola was named Kim Hyun Jung. There are many idols who have changed their birth names to stage names to be better recognized by fans and the public.
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