Finding U.S.-based K-pop stars? Inside the crazy new reality competition
You better practice your dance moves because there’s gonna be a K-pop competition coming to you soon! On the mission to globalize K-pop, the Korean entertainment company SM Entertainment has partnered with MGM Worldwide Television Group to bring Korean pop stars to the United States.
The two companies are planning to start an American competition series where young performers compete to be the next K-pop star joining SM’s newest boy group, NCT Hollywood.
SM Entertainment has created some of South Korea’s most famous K-pop groups including Red Velvet, EXO, SHINee, and SuperM. SM’s latest innovative boy group is NCT which currently has four separate subunits and a total of twenty-three members.
NCT’s subunit & concept
NCT stands for Neo Culture Technology. This innovative group of stars is split into four separate units based on various concepts. The four subunits are NCT 127 (Seoul-based), NCT Dream (originally a teen-only group), WayV (China-based), and NCT U (a unit that rotates all members).
Now, the international group will be adding the subunit NCT-Hollywood. The new members will be those who successfully win SM & MGM’s competition series. The show will scout for “America’s most talented emerging artists” who are males between the ages of thirteen and twenty-five.
The concept of NCT is meant to be an international K-pop group that expands all over the world with limitless members. The group already has numerous international members hailing from Japan, Thailand, China, Canada, and the U.S.
The first K-pop competition series based in the U.S.
The new competition series will have performers travel to Seoul to start their K-pop training. The contestants will then compete in various competitions ranging from singing and dancing to styling. SM Entertainment founder, Lee Soo-man, will act as judge and mentor to the hopeful K-pop stars. You will also see various NCT members help train the new contestants!
Lee Soo-man has stated: “I look forward to making an unconventional audition show that all music fans around the world can enjoy. I hope the audience enjoys watching the journey of new stars being born in Hollywood that will be promoted as NCT-Hollywood in the global market in the future.”
MGM chairman, Mark Burnett further elaborated: “This series is exactly the type of innovative programming that MGM is committed to creating on a global scale.” Burnett added: “K-pop is more than a genre of music; it’s a cultural phenomenon and we’re so excited to partner with the incredible Lee Soo-man and the team at SM to bring K-pop to the U.S.!”
CHUANG 2021 and other idol competition shows
Idol competition shows aren’t new to East Asia. China’s hit show CHUANG 2021 is a boy group survival show which became an instant international sensation. The show consisted of ninety contestants from all over the world including Japan, Russia, and the United States. The final winners created the eleven-member C-Pop group, INTO1.
In South Korea, they have the popular series Produce 101 which consists of 101 girls competing to form the K-pop star group I.O.I.
These competition shows can be found all throughout East Asia. However, NCT’s upcoming series will be the first based in America.
NCT’s other reality series
NCT already has the reality series, NCT Life which shows the members living their daily lives and traveling the world. The show began in 2016 and has ten seasons!
The show also features the foreign members guiding the group through their hometown. NCT Life in Osaka features Japanese member, Yuta Nakamoto, acting as a tour guide for his Korean bandmates. Similarly, NCT Life in Chiang Mai follows Thai member TEN, who travels through the city with his fellow idols.
We can’t wait to see what NCT-Hollywood will bring to the United States! NCT consists of some of the best dancers & singers in the world, so this competition will be fascinating to see. Let us know what your thoughts are on NCT-Hollywood in the comments below!