Following their appearance at the Rang De Korea K-IND Festa in New Delhi, Korean representative groups bugAboo and Kingdom held a press conference at the Korean Cultural Center India on October 17, 2022. Despite their packed schedules, the groups were energetic and ever-enthusiastic in their responses. Read on for more excerpts from the event!
The conference kicked off at 2:20 pm with a powerful performance by bugAboo to their song “Easy Move.” Afterwards, they warmly greeted the entire audience, followed by a Q&A session that lasted over 30 minutes. BugAboo is a six-member girl group formed by A Entertainment that debuted in October 2021. Members include Eunchae, Yoona, Rainie, Cyan, Choyeon, and Zin.
Talking about their first visit to India, Eunchae shared that it felt surreal to see the India that they had seen in movies and to enjoy delicious chicken curries here. When asked about their favorite Indian movie or actor, Choyeon answered that she enjoyed watching the movie 3 Idiots when she was in school and followed Bollywood dance sequences with her friends. Talking about their favorite thing about India, Yoona said that she was very happy to get to try curry in India and wants to try as many types of curry as possible. Responding to a question about whether the members wanted to pursue acting as well, Cyan shared that she had been interested in acting ever since she was a child, and would love to pursue it alongside her career as an idol. Talking about the lyrics of bugAboo’s songs, Zin said that the members get emotional at the lyric “This is the beginning of bugAboo, the miracle that I have made.” She explained that the lyric is meaningful to them as it represents the start of bugAboo, and is a memorable lyric for them. Choyeon also revealed that all the members’ parents have bugAboo songs set as their caller rings and alarms.
Namaste Hallyu got a chance to ask a few questions to bugAboo.
On October 25th the group will be celebrating its first debut anniversary. In their last interview with Namaste Hallyu bugAboo mentioned that they want to be a girl group that represents Korea. After witnessing them come from Korea and perform in the fest, we are certain that is the case. We asked them about their initial reactions when they learned they will be coming to India to perform. Leader Choyeon brightly answered “Yes, our first anniversary is next week. We are very thankful for the love and support we have had till now and will continue to have in the future. When all the members heard the news they exclaimed ‘Woah, India?!’. We were looking forward to our performance here. A lot of people came to see us and had a good time, which made us very happy.” Member Rainie is a big fan of Indian milk tea so we asked if she had the opportunity to try it yet, “I was looking forward to trying it but unfortunately due to the tight schedule, I couldn’t get the chance. When we come to India next time, I would want to taste it.”
bugAboo is a part of those rare K-Pop groups where a member of maknae line is a leader. When asked Choyeon if it was challenging to be a leader and at the same time be a younger member of the group, “I did not know that I would become the leader. After becoming the leader, I was worried about how to steer the team. The members helped me a lot. Although I am the leader, it’s not just me leading the team- it’s all of us steering the team together, so there were no problems. I’m very thankful to the members for that.” bugAboo is the first girl group to debut in six years under A Entertainment. The last group to do so was the boy group VAV. We asked them about any challenges or stereotypes they had to face doing so. Member Choyeon answered, “In both our first and second albums, we have tried to answer the challenges we face through our repeated verses. Through our TikTok challenges too, we try and will keep trying to answer any challenges or stereotypes we may face.”
Next up was Kingdom, a seven-member boy group that debuted in February 2021 under GF Entertainment. The concept of the group revolves around 7 members (Dann, Arthur, Mujin, Louis, Ivan, Jahan, and Hwon) representing 7 kings and 7 kingdoms. After their official greeting and photo-op, the group calmly sat down to answer all the questions. Kingdom was asked about their favorite Indian food and if they would ever incorporate Indian culture in one of their ethereal MVs.
Talking about the group and what sets them apart, Dann said that the unique concept of including different cultures and kingdoms, along with their movie-like performances is what gives Kingdom their color and their distinctive identity. While their fandom initially consisted majorly of teenagers, the group shared that people in their 40s and 50s enjoy Kingdom’s music and performances now. Responding to a question about similarities between India and Korea, Louis shared that he noticed children holding their mother’s hands while walking home from school. He said that the sight reminded him of his childhood, and made him think that, “no matter where you go in the world, a parent’s heart is the same – they all want to protect us from cars on the streets.” The group reiterated their love for India and Indian fans, reminiscing about their interactions with Indian Kingmakers at the Rang De Korea K-IND Festa. They also expressed their wish to come back to India in the future.
The group’s maknae Jahan shares his stage name with the famous Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan. We asked Jahan how it felt to be back in his kingdom, to which he jokingly responded, “I feel like building another Taj Mahal.” We also asked if the India they had imagined was different from the India they are seeing. Jahan said that they were thankful for the opportunity to come to India and that it was fascinating to see the things they cannot usually see in Korea, like Indian traditional markets and all the sights on the streets. We asked about the different styles and concepts that the group wants to try while staying within their concept. Dann explained that all of their songs in the albums have different concepts, ranging from fun dance songs to emotional ballad songs. He shared that owing to their Kingdom concept, fans sometimes feel like the members are far away and distant, and wonder if they could try cute concepts. Dann said that he thinks the members are very cute, and such concepts would suit them too.
Chiwoo was a part of the original lineup of Kingdom but terminated his contract with the agency. Member Hwon joined the group in May 2022, making them a 7 member group again. NH asked if it was challenging for Hwon to adjust with other members considering they share more history. Hwon’s response made all the members laugh, “We are doing good. There aren’t many problems. I have a lot of support from the other members.”
Member Ivan was previously a member of K-Tigers. We asked how different it was being a part of a taekwondo demo team versus a K-Pop group, “For me, it is quite similar but can be different at the same time. K-tigers is a mixture of a form of art and performance, taekwondo with K-Pop. Whereas K-Pop is a lot more focused on the songs, the lyrics, and the music. When I met the K-Tigers again because of the festival, I was like ‘Oh, my old friends.’ However, since many members have changed in the team I thought ‘Ah, where are my old friends?’.”
Both bugAboo and Kingdom are extremely talented groups with high potential as we witnessed in their performance at the festival. We want to thank the groups for taking out the time to answer all our questions calmly and positively. Since both groups have promised to come back to India, we cannot wait to see what more they have in store.