Le Sserafim is one of the biggest acts in K-pop’s fourth gen, but the girl group originally started with a 6-member lineup. That’s right, the band that includes Kim Chaewon, Sakura, Huh Yunjin, Kazuha and Hong Eunchae had a former member named Kim Garam, who exited the group in July 2022. Keep reading to see why and what the K-pop star is up to now.
Why Did Garam Leave Le Sserafim?
ICYMI, Le Sserafim was the first girl group to debut under BTS’ music company, HYBE, back in May 2022.
The group’s lineup was first announced one month earlier, and within the same day, anonymous users on former classmates of Garam’s began accusing the K-pop idol of bullying, underage drinking, smoking and school violence.
It’s actually pretty common for K-pop idols to be accused of bullying, however, the severity of the claims can vary dramatically — sometimes the claims are proven to be false and the member continues on with their group, but other times a music company will end their contracts with the K-pop idol in order to save the band’s image.
Originally, HYBE took the former option and debuted the girls with Garam as planned in May. Days later, an accuser of Garam’s came forward with a statement via a legal representative and photos of school documents indicating the disciplinary action taken against her. At the time, HYBE released their own statement disputing the accusations in detail.
Everything came to a head in July 2022, when the announcement came of Garam’s contract termination. Since then, Le Sserafim has continued on as five-member group, making their first comeback without Garam in October 2022 with “ANTI-FRAGILE.”
Garam made her first statement following the incident in August 2022, uploading it onto her friend’s Instagram account.
She began with an apology before sharing, “Since I worked hard towards my dream, it’s true that I was honestly scared my dreams would be shattered because of my past actions. However, as each day went by, I became more scared of all the accusations made against me.”
The former Le Sserafim member stated that she had never hit or inflicted violence against anyone, been forced to transfer schools, smoked cigarettes or drank alcohol, or bullied anyone. “I was just a regular student,” she added.
In response to Kim Garam’s post, her former agency HYBE shared, “Due to the termination of Kim Garam’s contract, further comments are inappropriate so there is nothing for us to say.”
What Is Garam Up to Now?
Since leaving Le Sserafim, Garam has graduated from her high school, the School of Performing Arts Seoul (SOPA), in May 2023. It was revealed that she also was accepted into a prestigious acting department at Dongguk University.
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