I BELIEVE IN MYSELF TO OUTSHINE OTHERS
Q1: I heard that you decided to study and take a break from the trainee life. Why did you change again?
A : In JYP, I practiced with 2PM and 2AM hyungs, but I make it in the end. Because of that, I decided to end my trainee life. I continue to live without even imagining to come back to my past life. Then, I saw 2PM and 2AM hyungs debut and I was stimulated. In the end, Director Hong Seung Seong gave me his hand.
Q2: What was the hardest thing that made you want to stop and give up your dream?
A: I was very determined when I quitted JYP. I started being a trainee since the 1st year of high school. But three years later, when I quitted being a trainee, I didn’t have any friends. During my years as a high school student, I would go to school and after school I would invite my friends to hang out together with me. But they always said they were so busy that they couldn’t hang out with me. So I would go to the training center to practice. The trainees are always lonely and are in need of sympathy. Eventually with time, friends from my group moved and I was left alone. When I was back in school, I would sleep during classes. When I woke up, lunch time was over. No one wanted to have lunch with me. Honestly, I was very shocked because of that. There wasn’t a single friend who greeted me on the road. My heart really hurt. It was really painful because at such a young age, I had to hold on to that kind of trainee life.
Q3: Then, after you quitted being a trainee, you committed to studying?
A: Three years later, I came back to study. By studying, the recovery was surprising and delightful. Actually, after I stopped training, I saw my test results for the first time. Out of 39 students in my class, all 38 of them passed. I knew that the only student who failed the test was me. I was shocked and since then I focused on studying. After that day, on my next test, I got 5th place out the 39 students in class. I studied by myself at that time.
Q4: What dream made you study to such extent?
A: I didn’t have any dreams. For those three years, I threw away my dream to be a singer. There was nothing I wanted to do, and there was no motivation at all. Looking back, I didn’t do anything beside studying. When I saw 2PM and 2AM hyungs appear on TV, I gradually started to dream again.
Q5: What about your parents’s support, Son Dongwoon?
A: When I felt difficult, my parents knew all about it. That’s why they respected and believed in whatever I choose and my decisions.
Q6: According to Director Hong Seung Seong, you grew and improved by studying.
A: It’s actually hard to say it like that. Previously, I didn’t have the basic foundation and experience. Since I didn’t have any knowledge to begin with, I developed more. I am thankful that I could become a star because compared to others who had more abilities, I wasn’t born with any talent.
Q7: If you knew that you didn’t have the talent, then did you choose this path just because of curiosity?
A: At young age, it’s a dream everyone dreams about at least once. It’s people’s curiosity about singers and entertainers. Director Hong said that if I work hard, I could work up to my potential.
Q8: What do you think is your weakness now?
A: I really can’t dance. Other hyungs are really good at dancing. I can only follow them. In people’s eyes, I have so many weaknesses. I don’t have the talent to dance, so singing really makes me feel more dynamic.
Q9: Communicating with fans made you famous. Do you think you can live a normal life now?
A: It’s because of the fans on Twitter. Even though I meet them only through a singer-fan relationship, I know that my fans really like me. But, like anything, some people like me and some others hate me. I consider my relationship with fans to be like a relationship a trustworthy and loving friend would have. I realized that as time passes, my communication with them is no longer just the communication between a singer and the fans, but a more personal one. I feel much more comfortable. Now my fans choose to protect me and I want to do the same. That’s why I always say that. Working hard and expressing more seems to be my way of connecting with my fans.
Q10: What is the presence of a fan to Son Dongwoon?
A: I thought of a fan as someone who can see me on TV or meet me coincidentally, and relate with me casually. But now, I think the relationship is warmer because we can support and trust each other. Actually, no one has ever been this close to me. We are very busy sometimes and we have to suffer from the morning. When there’s a schedule in the morning, we have to do make up at 4AM. We complained a lot to the make up staff and our managers making them feel even more exhausted. However, if you think about it, our fans are willing to wait for us all night only to see our short performance. When I see them, I feel guilty and worry about them. Everyday, when someone cheers me up when I feel tired, I want to give them energy. I think that is such a remarkable thing. Although I feel tired, I receive a lot of cheer from the fans’ Twitter mentions. Also, ever since I debuted, I received gifts like photobooks with my photos. I was really moved by the presents. Because of the fans, I don’t feel tired at all. Their presence is like energy to me.
Q11: What is Son Dongwoon’s dream now?
A: In Korea, it seems that many people classify certain music genres calling it “idol music”. They have the image that idol singers can gain popularity but not make music. However, little by little people see musicality as our color so that we can sing a song that is well received and loved. Now, we sing a lot of songs about love or separation. But later, we want to be singing songs that encourage people who aren’t in good condition or are facing difficulties. Even though there is not enough time, as a singer I want my job to be meaningful. Honestly, rather than being known as Beast, we want our presence to be more meaningful to many people.
Q12: How is your relationship with Director Hong Seung Seong?
A: If Beast members and the Director meet, it’s interesting. It is strange, but I feel a little awkward whenever consulting with the Director. Of course, Director always gives the best answer. However, I have seen him since my times in JYP and I think that he is a person with an eerie charisma. Some times I can’t behave like a baby, but when I’m in the practice room, I often call and text him. He also comes to look for me.
Q13: How does Director Hong encourage you?
A: Since I’m still young, I don’t want to trouble the Director. Director’s words always encourage me. Recently, we’ve just finished our Asian Tour Fanmeeting. After the performance in Taiwan, Director came to the backstage and said, “Now, you guys can do well without me, right?” Even though it was brief, it meant a lot to us and gave us a lot of strength. In the beginning of the year, even though we accomplished BEAST’s solo encore concert, I think we still lack a lot. We were happy because we’re well received in Taiwan. Although it is important to be well received and loved, in the future I will try hard to improve my ability for those who have praised and guided me.
Q14: Are you satisfied in Cube?
A: I am satisfied. Although I have joined a bigger agency and befriended idols from other companies in the past, it is difficult to enjoy time making music and do things I want like when I’m with the Director. Unlike 4Minute members who usually call Director Father, BEAST members can’t call him “Father” because we’re embarrassed. Still, I feel really comfortable with Director Hong’s presence.
Q15: What do you want to say to to-be-singers who wants to be a singer?
A: I want to tell them to not give up halfway. I have given up my dream and stopped being a JYP trainee. I regretted it very much. After spending three years practicing, I noticed that I can sing quite well compared to before. But, after resting for a long time, I started singing again and realized it had been two years. Now, everything goes by easily and I feel my past capabilities has returned. However, it’s very difficult for me to ensure if the result is good or bad because I can’t make sure if I have done my best. I remember people used to say that each song is like stair step. If we ascend the step one by one, we can feel the improvement anytime. Anyone’s opinion can make us feel like we are nothing, but I believe in myself who can outshine others.
CREDITS: There’ll Be No Spotlight If You Stop Now (SOURCE); LadyPsyche & YONGISM @ B2STRISING (TRANS)
“Japanese is the toughest. Will work harder to learn the Japanese language.”
- Interviewer: There were a lot of events held in Japan in 2011. What left the strongest impression on you? Please also tell us the reason.
- DW: I remember all the moments clearly. Especially since we had the Hi Touch event in Japan even though the moment spent in front of each other was very short, putting on the wristband on the fans’ fingers, there were many special events so all the memories were etched in the mind.
- Interviewer: What was the most surprising or shocking event that happened in Japan?
- DW: Was able to walk on the streets with the members and surprisingly there was a shopping mall just for males, selling clothes, shoes, accessories etc. There’s no such (thing) in Korea.
- Interviewer: You should have been to many places. Which place would you like to go to again, and what food would you like to eat again?
- DW: I want to go to the sushi place in “Shota’s Sushi” manga. What I want to eat is the sushi Shota makes (laughs)
- Interviewer: So what’s your impression of Japanese B2UTY? Their characteristic in one sentence?
- DW: In one sentence… They left an impression of being warm and comfortable.
- Interviewer: Having visited the Asian countries in July, is there any happening that left the deepest impression on you?
- DW: In Thailand, I was suddenly feeling so unwell to the extent that I could not even stand properly. I nearly could not perform at all and was really worried but as I went on stage, it became better such that I didn’t feel unwell and could carry on performing (running around). (laughs)
- Interviewer: I would think that you would have learnt the different languages of each Asian country respectively, so which country’s language was the toughest? And also tell us if you have any methods for learning languages.
- DW: Japanese is the most difficult. (laughs) Learning method? If I knew, I would be able to do better. (laughs) Will work harder to learn the Japanese language. (Note: he said this in Japanese.)
- Interviewer: However, what do you do all the time on the planes?
- DW: Sleep. Most of the time, I fall asleep upon sitting down immediately and only wake up around the time we touch down. (laughs)
- Interviewer: Not only in Korea, but you guys live together even overseas. What’s the good point about this?
- DW: It’s that we are always together no matter when. Because we are always together, during our waiting times or travelling, we will not be bored.
- Interviewer: On the other hand, what’s tough? If there is any trouble (with living together with the members), please tell us.
- DW: There’s no trouble between the members. Instead, we have our space (as a group). No matter where we go, there are six of us so the space density is high. (laughs) However we try to do it, because we live together, there is little personal space.
- Interviewer: Tell us a little about the members’ secrets that only Dongwoon knows.
- DW: There’s no secret that (I) can do that (for).
- Interviewer: Then tell us a secret about yourself. For example a jinx?
- DW: If there’s anything to do with the number 4, my mood turns bad. For example, if the mic I’m holding onto is the number 4, or if the belt I’m wearing is looped at the 4th hole, I become concerned about it. I don’t like the number 4.
- Interviewer: What about Christmas memories, since Christmas is around the corner? What do you want to do during Christmas this year?
- DW: There are memories of having steak for Christmas once when CUBE’s President Hong said he’ll treat me to good food for Christmas. For this year’s Christmas… Rather than hoping to do something, I just hope I won’t have any classes/lessons on that day.
- Interviewer: So, tell us what are your aspirations for 2012. Anything you’d like to try or do for activities in future?
- DW: I want to grow in all aspects. Definitely in terms of dancing and singing, but also strive to do well in foreign languages so that no matter on which stage I stand, I’ll be able to become and outstanding artiste.
- Interviewer: Lastly, leave a message for Japanese B2UTY.
- DW: We’ve received lots of love this year, but hope to get more love in future! We love you too!
- Interviewer: What if you had 1 week of break what would you do?
- DW: Because we live together members now, there isn’t much time spent with the family. So if there’s a chance, I want to go on a holiday with my family.
- Interviewer: What if there is a time machine, when would you like to go to?
- DW: To three years later. I’m concerned with to what extent I will grow/accomplish.
- Interviewer: What if you could exchange with a member, who would you like it to be?
- DW: Doojoon. No matter how you see it, he’s the kind who will give good feelings and is popular, especially from the women, he receives lots of love, and so I’m envious of that.
- Interviewer: What if you could live as another famous person for a week or if you had a chance at another profession, who/what would it be?
- DW: NASA employee. I’ve heard that NASA has lots of information about the hidden universe so I want to know all those secrets.
- Interviewer: What if you had the ability to move anywhere in the world in a split of a second, where would you like to go?
- DW: Egypt. I want to personally see the Pyramid and the Sphinx that is so famous throughout the world.
- Interviewer: What if you were born in Japan, what would you be doing?
- DW: Part-timing at a sushi bar. I really like sushi, so I’d probably take a part-time job at a sushi bar. I can learn how to make sushi and also eat lots of it. (laughs)
- Interviewer: If you had 100 million won, what would you buy or where would you use it?
- DW: I lost my MP3 player so firstly, I’ll buy myself an MP3 player. Next, since I’ve my license, I want to buy a car.
- Interviewer: What if you were a girl, what will be your occupation?
- DW: Princess. (laughs)
- Interviewer: What if you were an actor, what genre would you like to act in?
- DW: Comedy. I want to give laughter to lots of people. I’ll be happy if people have fun while they look at me.
- Interviewer: What if you could go 10 years back in time, what would you like to grab?
- DW: On top of singing and dancing, I also want to work harder at foreign languages. And also, when we become artistes who perform across the world, I want to be able to communicate with the fans without any problems.
Q: They say you’re bold and extravagant.
“Don’t think so. I’m called that because they couldn’t find a real nickname for me.”
(BUT the team members would like to disagree.)
Q: Heard you’re good at Chinese.
“Wanted to go to the university with Chinese scholarship, so I took lessons and studied by myself as well. There are some Chinese trainees in the company and I can speak fairly well with them.”
Q: Aren’t you quiet.
“I’m losing chances to talk, I want to be funny but my face and my tone are quite serious so that image stuck on me. I am however looking an year or two ahead so I think I have a lot of time to show my funny side in future.”