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Kpop – The Next Big Thing

Most of you know about the famous Kpop song gangnam style, but have you tried listening to other Kpop stars?

At the moment, Kpop (Korean pop music, for those who don’t know) is hugely popular in most of South East Asia and South Korea. The stars are usually part of a large group, e.g. of EXO with 12 members and Girls Generation with 9. Personally I’m not a huge fan of the style of music, however another key feature of Kpop’s success is the dancing. If you are in a Kpop group, you HAVE to be able to dance. Usually the dance is similar to hip hop style for guys, and for girls it can be sassy but also super cute at the same time, for example some girl groups have performed with giant paw gloves on and cat ears.
Here’s an example of a less intense, but seriously cute, Kpop song:
And for guys, here’s probably the most famous Kpop group currently, EXO:

(These videos are only the music videos and don’t even contain the whole dance)

As it has become so popular, there are now Kpop fitness classes and dance classes even in Singapore. The National University of Singapore has a Korean cultural interest group with its own performing dance team, KDT. They have been self-taught since they began, just by copying the dance videos of the music stars, and now they have an instructor once a week come by to help them train. Here’s an example of their performances (before they even had an instructor!):

I have enrolled in the class as a way to keep fit, something that will definitely happen considering the dance team requires 8 hours a week in training and is more or less compulsory for all members (one 4 hour session is even on a Saturday!). We have to choose our top two songs to perform in January, but as I know I won’t be able to make every session I have only chosen one. My top song was Growl by EXO, the dance video shown here:

Unfortunately too many people have chosen this song and so we had to audition for it, learn the moves of the chorus that day at practice and see how well we do. As I have only ever had about 3 salsa lessons before in my dance experience, and I haven’t really exercised at all since school… I was pretty terrified. To worsen the situation, after we started learning the moves it became clear that my knees would suffer (it’s about 1:50 in the video where they do a floor move) as shown in the photo below.

growl performance bruised knees :(

growl performance bruised knees 😦

So far they haven’t decided who gets which song yet, but it has been a great experience so far and hopefully by next January I will be performing my chosen song!

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