Who Is WINTER?
WINTER, whose real name is Kim Min Jeong, was born in Busan, South Korea, on January 1, 2001 (we love a Capricorn). She trained to become a K-pop idol for four years at SM Entertainment, the South Korean music company responsible for famous artists such as EXO, Girls Generation and Red Velvet, until debuting with aespa in 2020 with “Black Mamba.”
Along with aespa, WINTER also has debuted in SM supergroups such as Got the Beat, SM Town and Girls on Top.
Who Is aespa?
The four members of aespa include WINTER, GISELLE, KARINA and NINGNING, marking them as the first girl group to debut under SM in 6 years, with the last female band being Red Velvet, who were formed in 2014.
“The training system in K-pop in Korea is relatively very competitive and intense,” Karina told W Magazine in July 2022. “You’re all close together and you’re all trying to reach for the same goal, but there naturally is a competition among the group as well.”
She recalled that some groups had even filmed videos, and were on the cusp of releasing music before their projects were pulled at the last minute.
“When the three of us were training for the debut, there were a lot of uncertainties surrounding the group formation, so it was very emotionally unstable,” she recalled. “There’s a constant worry and fear that things might change.”
The K-pop industry often debut groups with differing “concepts,” which is a band’s overall theme that helps to separate them from others. For aespa, the girls have their own virtual avatars which appear in their music videos, along with a virtual world called “KWANGYA.” This “aespa universe,” is what draws in so many of their fans, who are called MYs.
“To be completely honest, we weren’t exactly sure how the concept would pan out in the long run,” WINTER told UpRoxx in March 2023.”Especially how long and how big it would pan out in the future. But at the same time, we appreciated the refreshing and unfamiliar concept.”
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