After a photo revealed a chaebol (heiress) is currently a trainee under THEBLACKLABEL, discussions arose regarding status in the industry. Do you need to have a “silver spoon” to become a K-pop trainee? Keep on reading for all the details.
Recently, a photo of a girl group reportedly produced by Teddy Park, featuring influencer Ella Gross and Shinsegae Group Chairwoman Lee Myung Hee’s granddaughter, Annie Moon (Moon Seo Yoon), caught the attention of K-pop fans worldwide.
After the photo made its rounds, THEBLACKLABEL announced on February 6 that they are preparing for the debut of a girl group, aiming for a debut in the first half of this year. It’s been reported that Ella Gross and Annie Moon are among the debut candidates for this upcoming girl group.
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As a result, expectations among K-pop fans for the girl group are at an all-time high. While trust in Teddy, who produced hit songs for groups like 2NE1 and BLACKPINK, may play a role in the anticipation, the majority of people are curious about how Ella Gross and Annie Moon will fare in a girl group debut.
In particular, with the attention focused on Annie Moon, a third-generation chaebol heiress, participating in trainee life for a girl group debut, public curiosity about the world of trainees has also increased.
Major K-pop agencies, including the Big 4 (HYBE, JYP, SM, and YG), invest large amounts of capital to discover talent and provide training for a continuous and stable launch of new artists.
Do You Need to Be ‘Silver Spoon’ To Become a K-Pop Trainee?
The era where idol trainees from affluent backgrounds have an advantage is becoming more favorable. As competition intensifies, many trainees are receiving financial support from their parents. It’s an open secret in the K-pop industry that entertainment companies often prefer trainees from stable family backgrounds.
As K-pop gains more popularity, the market for trainees is also expanding. Many aspire to become idols and undergo rigorous stages from auditioning to becoming a trainee and becoming part of a group’s debut line-up. Recently, it has become a trend for debut groups to be determined through survival shows, adding another obstacle to the debut journey.
Amidst the intensifying debut competition, trainees are increasingly expected to have exceptional credentials.
As mentioned earlier, Ella Gross has already built a modeling career and is an influencer with over 4 million followers. Similarly, Annie Moon comes from an immensely influential background as the granddaughter of the chairwoman of Shinsegae Group.
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With that, music industry insiders revealed if you need to be a’silver spoon’—someone w who comes from an affluent family—to score a change in K-pop trainee life.
A music industry insider commented, “The saying ‘fortune favors the bold’ no longer seems to apply to the K-pop trainee market. With such a fierce competition even before debut, factors like ‘popularity’ or ‘background’ can become make-or-break advantages. When skill levels are relatively similar, agencies naturally lean towards members with popularity or a strong foundation.”
Another source noted, “In the past, many trainees came from challenging family backgrounds, but recently, there’s a growing trend of affluent and individuals with unique backgrounds aspiring to become idols. As competition intensifies, it’s vital for trainees to possess distinctive traits beyond just looks, charm, or skills. It’s not just about financial privilege; having unique characteristics and talents can give anyone an advantage.”
With that, though it is definitely an edge if you have a ‘silver spoon,’ it is not a requirement. Still, as it is now something companies consider, you can expect to see more rich kids enter the K-pop market.
What do you think of the situation? Tell us in the comments below!
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Written by Alexa Lopez
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