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Singer Kangta comes back as idol mentor

Posted February. 02, 2018 08:37,   

Updated February. 02, 2018 08:37


Kangta (birth name Ahn Chil-hyun) has returned as a “mentor of idol singers.” The Korean singer has taken a role of mentoring for idol trainees in “Idol Mom,” a real entertainment show premiered on Lifetime on Thursday.

A former member of H.O.T., a legendary boyband hailed as the “Idol of idols” in South Korea and a partner at entertainment giant SM Entertainment, Kangta seems to be the perfect candidate for such a role. During an interview with The Dong-A Daily on Tuesday, however, the heartthrob of H.O.T. said his observation of young aspirants made him realize the changing perception about idol singers.

The 39-year-old said the landscape of entertainment business has undergone a seismic change over the last 20 years. When he was first starting out, terms such as “a debut in a foreign country” and “idol fostering” were alien concepts. “Back then, singers were not fostered. Those with perfected skills were selected in the first place,” said Kangta.

He says he is worried about idol singers and trainees of today. The advanced mobile and Internet technologies might be an upside for the growing number of channels, but it also means as much fierce competition for would-be entertainers.

While he has come back with the Idol Mom, his fans are more excited over a potential reunion with their erstwhile idols H.O.T. The five men will return as one team for the first time in 17 years through Infinite Challenge, a popular entertainment show on MBC.

“At first I thought it would be impossible,” said Kangta about the dancing practice he and his team recently started. “But once we started, I knew that we still got it.”

Yeun-Kyung Cho yunique@donga.com