The ways foreign idols debuted in Kpop are very different. There are people who practice hard, but there are also people who only need to strike 3 poses to be recruited.
The road to becoming a K-pop idol has always been known to be tough and full of challenges. Many trainees have to practice singing and dancing for years to be able to persuade their entertainment companies. In particular, foreign idols face even greater challenges. There are also exceptions when some idols still managed to catch attention from the beginning without much preparation.
In 2018, Lucas appeared on “Knowing Brothers” with Bambam (GOT7), Yuqi ((G)I-DLE), and Park Joon Hyung (g.o.d). When asked about how he became an idol, Lucas shared, “When I was in school, I was not a good student. My score was quite low. So when SM held an audition in Hong Kong, I tried it out to see how it went.” The male idol said that he did not expect much, but suddenly passed the audition.
At that time, Lucas did not prepare much. He just struck 3 poses and got accepted by SM. Lucas revealed that his dancing and singing skills were not good back then. He could only clap his hands to the beat.
In 2010, YG held an audition in Thailand. Singer Danny Im (1TYM), one of the judges, shared that, among many contestants, only one was accepted. That was Lisa. Thanks to her charisma and talent, the female idol made a great impression. Danny Im said: “Lisa is very talented, calm and extremely confident. I always remember the moment she was dancing on stage. I was like, ‘Oh, this girl must be so confident’.“
Moreover, Danny Im was also convinced by Lisa thanks to the conversation afterwards. “Lisa became a different person when she got off the stage. She’s really humble,” the judge recalled. After her training time at YG, Lisa debuted as a BLACKPINK member and became a top female idol in K-Pop.
Mina‘s trainee story is extremely interesting. A JYP staff member happened to see Mina while she was shopping with her mother in Osaka. Thanks to her soft and innocent visual, Mina immediately caught the staff’s attention. After passing the JYP Global Audition, Mina went to Korea. After 16 months of training, the Japanese idol joined the survival show Sixteen and debuted in TWICE.
Momo used to practice at ‘Step Out Dance Studio’ in her hometown of Japan. In addition, Momo, her sister, and two friends participated in the ‘Superstar K3’ audition program. In the 3rd round, Momo’s dance group was eliminated. However, JYP employees accidentally watched Momo’s dance video and recruited her into the company.
After 3 years of training, Momo continued to compete in the Sixteen contest. Momo‘s path was really tough when halfway through the competition, she was eliminated. However, at the final evaluation round, Park Jin Young decided to add Momo to the lineup because he believed that she would help TWICE’s choreography improve. Currently, Momo is one of the female idols with the best dancing ability in Gen 3.
No need to audition, Tzuyu was still accepted into JYP. As a student, Tzuyu participated in the school’s cultural programs. Standing in the crowd, the female idol always stands out because of her great height and pretty face. In 2012, a JYP employee happened to see a clip of Tzuyu dancing with friends.
Immediately attracted, JYP sent someone to recruit Tzuyu. The funny thing is that at that time, she thought that JYP was a scam company. Even Tzuyu thinks Park Jin Young is a comedian. In the Sixteen contest, Tzuyu was the most loved by the audience and also the contestant who improved the most.
Although each person’s story of becoming an idol is different, all have gone through a long process. More and more, foreign idols are gradually proving their talent and bravery in the K-Pop music industry.