Stage names sometimes became popularized to the point it may become artists’ real names.
Song Ji Hyo
Song Ji Hyo, the ace of “Running Man” has changed her name many times, inside and outside of the entertainment industry. When she was born, she was named Cheon Seong Im but her real birth name ended up being Cheon Soo Yeon.
The actress only called herself Song Ji Hyo when she turned to modeling. Her stage name stemmed from her admiration for Song Seung Heon and Song Hye Kyo.
Bi Rain gained popularity from the famous series “Full House” and became a household name in Korea. The audience frequently knows of the actor as Bi Rain and little knows his real name is Jung Ji Hoon.
The stage name was invented because the sky rained whenever he went to record for a song. Because of its recurrence, his old manager decided to call him Bi, which means “rain” in Korean.
Kim Woo Bin
Kim Woo Bin’s real name is Kim Hyun Joong. When the actor switched career from modelling to acting, Hyun Jung took up the name Kim Woo Bin out of worries of being mistaken with senior singer Kim Hyun Joong, who played Yoon Ji Hoo in “Boys Over Flowers”.
Park Seo Joon
Not many viewers know Park Seo Joon’s real name is “Park Yong Kyu. To avoid the attention of the press, the actor only uses his real name in charity work.
“Goblin” Gong Yoo has a real name, Gong Ji Cheol. His stage name is the combination of his mother’s and father’s last name (“Yoo” and “Gong” respectively).
Son Ye Jin
Son Ye Jin’s registered name is Son Eon Jin. The actress started using the name “Son Ye Jin” when she started her acting career. Her stage name is not too different from her real name.
The stage name “Hyun Bin”, on the contrary, has nothing in similarity to the actor’s real name. In his birth certificate, Hyun Bin’s real name is Kim Tae Pyeong. The media once reported his reason for changing his name being it was hard to pronounce.
Shin Min Ah
Shin Min Ah only changed her last name when she took up this stage name. The actress’s real name is Jang Min Ah. When she was working as a model, she took up “Yang Min Ah”. Min Ah was well-known at that time because her name reminded people of the “Burger Girl” Yang Mi Ra.
Kang Ha Neul
Kang Ha Neul’s real name is Kim Ha Neul. However, as he feared of being mistaken for a famous actress, he decided to tweak his name a bit. “Ha Neul” also means heaven, therefore, the actor kept this part of his name to preserve its meaning.
Ma Dong Seok
Ma Dong Seok has an interesting backstory to his current stage and how his real name “Lee Dong Seok” was “twisted”.
When he was in primary school, Ma Dong Seok got in a fight with a friend at school. Friends decided to call him “Ang-ma Dong Seok” (Demon Dongseok). His manager also thought “Ma Dong Seok” would be unique and suitable for work in the industry. He even said that his father sometimes forgot his real name. Instead his father would call him by his stage name.