As K-Pop fans, we can’t help but wonder, what does it take to be a K-Pop idol? All those shining stars that we admire, how did they get there in the first place? And maybe even some of you are thinking on pursuing that career path after seeing your idols achieving their dreams. With the expansion of K-Pop all over the world, becoming a K-Pop idol is not a simple unrealistic dream anymore but it is a true career choice. However, between wanting to become a K-Pop idol and actually getting to be one, there are a few necessary steps you must go through.
Korea has its own beauty and work standard, which might be very different than those in your home country. yet, if you want to make it to the K-Pop industry, you’ll have to fit in among other trainees with the same goal as you. It might be hard, but it is not impossible if you really give it your all, plus nowadays auditions are being held overseas as well, so you might as well grab your chance. Because it all starts with an audition, but it can end up with you on the MAMA stage one day. So let’s see what you need to do to become a K-Pop idol.
1. The language barrier
While it is not mandatory for you to speak Korean in order to make it to some debut line up, it is greatly recommended that you know at least the basics, and more if you want. Because not only will this show your determination to achieve your goal, but it will also facilitate communication with other trainees and staff you might encounter during an audition. While most staff do know about basic english to guide you, communication will go way smoother if you take a step forward and speak to them in Korean. Plus, K-Pop idols are expected to sing in Korean, so eventually, you’ll have to learn the language at some point, you might as well start working no it before the workload of a trainee’s life becomes unbearable.
2. Training over and over again
Before going to any kind of contest of audition, you should train and rehearse more than a thousand time at least. Whatever your skill is, you want to show during your audition that you’re the best in that field. While all skills can be improved, coming in with a solid base of singing or dancing will be of great help. Almost like a fast pass for debuting. Again, it isn’t the easiest part, but if you do not give up and work hard on your audition performance, your efforts will surely pay off. In the K-Pop industry the competition is hard and everybody give it their very best, so only if you do the same will you stand a chance.
3. Getting along with other trainees
That might sound like a joke compared to the two previous steps, but it is just as important. Whether you made it after an audition or have been casted for a survival, you will meet with other trainees who’s dream is also to debut. And many groups are formed based on existing trainee groups, may it be because they are already friends, or simply because they have good chemistry. Whatever the reason is, this means you don’t want to make enemies in the agency. Remember that what makes an idol is not only their talent but also their good personality.
4. Following the rules
Rules are the keys to your success. Agencies have tons of rules for idols, and if you break any of them, you can cross out your idol bingo. Trainees are usually teenagers and young adults, which is an age where it is hard to obey so many rules, but if you really want to become a K-Pop idol, you’ll have to stick by them carefully. With the pressure and tiredness it might be hard to comply all the time, but if you do so, your chances to debut are almost guaranteed.
5. Always keep improving
Trainees have monthly evaluation, and those are usually what helps creating debuting groups. Many idols and trainees have shared that only the best can keep up with being trainees, if the coaches see no improvements along the way, debuting is not even an option. This should become you motto. If you want to debut, you have to make sure you only keep getting better. Do whatever it takes for that because this is the ultimate criteria for going from trainee to idol status. And make sure you do not rely on you talent only, improve in other artistic fields as well to show just how determined you are to reach the final line.
6. Debuting and making it work
If you already make it to debut, you’ve come a long way and you deserve recognition for your hard work, unfortunately, it is not yet the end of your journey. Because debuting does not guarantee you to stay a K-Pop idol for long. You have to ensure your future as a K-Pop idol by making your group successful. You can do that by slowly growing a fanbase that will support your group all the way, or you can keep up with musical and conceptual trends going around in the industry to not fall behind. There are new groups debuting almost everyday, but barely half of them make it to the spotlight and big stages. If you want to hold onto your dream, make sure to dedicate your all for it, even after your debut.
Of course, those steps cannot guarantee success, whatsoever it mostly depends on agencies’ needs and opportunities, but at least consider those tips in case you’re considering walking on that long yet exciting career path.