Friday,26 Jul 2019
New Delhi, The world is riding on the K-Pop wave and India is catching on well beyond the "Gangnam Style" mania. The testimony is the number of Indian participants -- a staggering 3,475 -- in a K-Pop contest that looks for vocal and dance talent in the South Korean pop music genre. For this year's contest finale on Saturday, K-Pop band IN2IT and Alexa, who witnessed some Bollywood action in their April tour, are slated to perform.
IN2IT, a seven-member boy band comprising Jiahn, Yeontae, Inho, Hyunuk, Isaac, Inpyo and Sunghyun -- and guest star Alexa shook a leg to the Bollywood number "Bole Chudiyan" when they were here last.
When asked about their Bollywood connection, Yeontae said that he is interested in films "Gully Boy" and "Student Of The Year 2", and loves the movies of Aamir Khan "who is famous in South Korea".
"Bollywood films nicely combine acting, performance and songs in a musical style," Inho, another band member, told IANS. The group has recently done a dance cover of "The Jawaani Song" of SOTY-2.
For Alexa, who grew up in America, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan makes for the best Indian actor. She also said that having a K-Pop track as background score in a Bollywood movie would be an interesting crossover and "would definitely be something bright and loud".
Their own latest single "Run Away" is scheduled for an August 7 release. As per the band, it is a song about the sorrowful prayers and confessions of young souls in their 20s who never give up and pursue their dreams.
"The powerful guitar riff will show you a powerful and energetic IN2IT with the wonderful choreography of Freemind, the best choreographer in K-Pop," the band said.
On their second India tour, what's on the minds of the artistes is desi food, including tandoori chicken and naan, which they eat in South Korea's Indian restaurants whenever they "miss India".
Indian fans have also managed to leave their mark on the band and Alexa.
"Coming to India is the only time I've really had to interact with my Indian fans in person, but online through my Instagram, a large demographic of my followers is from India. The Indian fans I met happen to be the sweetest people on the planet," Alexa told IANS.
The artistes will be here for the grand finale of the 2019 LG K-Pop Contest, organised by tech brand LG and Korean Cultural Centre India. Select Indian finalists will be competing in the Changwon K-Pop World Festival.
The Indian representatives of the 2016 and 2017 Changwon K-Pop Festival have won the Excellent Vocal and Best Performance awards. Priyanka Mazumdar, the winner of the 2016 contest, has debuted in K-Pop group, Z-Girls. Siddhant Arora, another Indian artiste, has debuted in Z-Boys.
"I think it's absolutely amazing that Priyanka and Siddhant have entered the K-Pop industry as non-Koreans," Alexa said. IN2IT member Isaac who hails from Malaysia is rooting for them.
The grand finale will take place at the Talkatora Stadium here on Saturday, and will feature performances by the band and Alexa.
(Siddhi Jain can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)