K- Pop Stardom

K- Pop Stardom

In recent years, K-pop has become more and more popular worldwide. There are many groups that have been trying to appeal more to their American fans in order to spread their music and luckily it has been working. Recently, BTS, one of the many k-pop groups, were able to become one of the first Korean groups to ever perform on an American award show: the American Music Award’s. Although they have become very popular, they had to work hard in order to get to where they are.

In my opinion, Korean groups work harder than western artists in order to become the idols they dream of being, giving up living in their hometowns, not seeing their families for long periods of time, and having to dedicate most of their time to practicing for drastic hours.

I understand that some people might think that this statement is not true, saying that other artists, whether they be westerners or from somewhere else, work just as hard and go through the same struggles in order to become singers or actors.

Many of the idols in the k-pop community had to leave their homes to go and audition at the company of their choice, which are mostly located in Seoul, South Korea. Imagine having to leave your family and hometown at the age of 10, 11, 12, etc. to be a trainee in a company for many years. Not only do they leave their homes, some even end up being homeless if they are not accepted into a company or if the company is small and doesn’t have enough money to help support them in some way. In fact, it has happened to many idols throughout the years. Also, considering the fact that if they don’t have a home, some even end up starving., Not only do they have to leave their homes, but they also leave their families behind, some not being able to see them for five or more years. Between their hectic schedules, practicing and going to the classes, they don’t have the time to go back to their hometowns to meet with their families. Even when they have debuted, it’s still a struggle to be able to try and meet them because of different scheduled shows they have to appear on or more practice. A lot of the time, the only way they can talk to their families is through phone calls, but even that is hard to do because as a trainee, most aren’t allowed to have phones.

As previously mentioned, trainees, or even idols that have already debuted, have to practice for ridiculous amounts of hours ranging to even three in the morning! A lot of the time, the trainees have to go practice right after their classes, no matter how late it is. Once a debuted idol, they have to go to practice once they are finished with their scheduled TV program appearances or whatever else they had to attend to, can you imagine how mentally and physically draining it can be?

American artist have it easier to become famous, for example posting videos on Youtube and getting recognized, unlike Korean idols who have to practice nonstop, leave their hometowns in hopes of making it big, and not see their families for long periods of time.

I wish that some people would not be so ignorant and turn their heads when they are exposed to K-pop, it’s a toxic mentality that should be left behind and people should be more open minded. Just because we don’t understand Korean, doesn’t mean that it gives us the right to insult them because of the language they speak or how they look. They did not spend all their time breaking their backs only for people to be ungrateful and close minded. Although they don’t need ‘western validation’, it would be nicer to see more people not act superior just because they are Asian artists, they worked harder to get to where they are.