What Happens To KPOP Idol Stars After Their Group Disbands?
Disbandment among KPOP Idol groups is inevitable. The longest contract between an entertainment agency and a singer is 7 years, according to South Korea's Fair Trade Commission. With this, KPOP idols and fans are dreading the so-called "7-year curse," where they have to decide to renew the contract or completely disband the group. There are many reasons why a KPOP group have no choice, but to disband: not earning much from the job, poor management, no music freedom, and maybe they are just past their glory days. So, what would happen to them in the future?
It is not entirely disadvantageous for KPOP idols to disband from their group. In contrast, this may be a new start for their career, especially if being with a group did not work for them well. Here are five examples on how KPOP idols move on from their respective KPOP groups:
Variety Show Star
Even when they were still in the group, idols were already exposed to variety shows. Their hosting or MC-ing skills were also developed through various gigs. Being funny or spontaneously entertaining is also a plus! For example, SISTAR's Soyou and 2NE1's Dara are now seen in a number of variety shows as hosts and entertainers.
Actor or Actress
Being an actor or actress is a common career path for most idols. At least one idol in a group pursues acting after they disband. And most of them actually get the big break that they deserve and keep on getting the lead roles in popular Korean dramas.
Sometimes, it comes to a point where people are surprised that they are once a part of a KPOP group. Some examples would be After School's UEE, Hello Venus' Kwon Nara, and SISTAR's Bora. Internationally acclaimed South Korean movie "Train To Busan" even casted a former-idol, which is Wonder Girls' So Hee.
Solo Artist or Company Owner
Being in a KPOP group tends to be suffocating for some artists. This is because entertainment agencies usually decide everything about the group's music or style. Therefore, once the contract ends, idols choose to leave to pursue creative freedom. Some examples would be Infinite's Hoya, 4Minute's Hyuna, and Wonder Girls' Sunmi.
Though this is not the case for everyone, other idols just wanted to continue their music career without much trouble. Some of them even start their own entertainment company! The best examples would be Wanna One's Kang Daniel, Wonder Girls' Yubin and BlockB's Zico.
Obviously, it is not the "end of the world" for idols after their respective groups disband. They still have options for their career in the entertainment industry or even outside of it. Modelling and vlogging could be a good career ground for them.
Some could completely leave the spotlight and go back to school or find a regular job. There are also those who started their own families like Wonder Girls' Sunye and Laboum's Yulhee. And as fans, you should just be happy for your idols in whatever path they choose to go.