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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Truths And Fallacies Of Idols In Musicals 100621

The idol wind is blowing on the musical industry. Idols are knocking on the musical industry’s door with stars like SES’ Bada (Choi Sung Hee) and Ok Joo Hyun, both already recognized as talented musical actresses, Big Bang’s Daesung, TVXQ’s Xiah Junsu and U-Know Yunho, Girls Generation’s Taeyeon, Super Junior’s Sungmin and Yesung, and After School’s Jung Ah being cast as lead roles in productions. One should consider carefully, however, of whether or not the entrance of idols in musicals is necessarily a positive change.
□The Power of Idols, a String of Sold Out Performances
The biggest strength that idol stars bring to the musical industry is their ticket power. Most of the time, the mere fact that an idol star is appearing in a musical will bring a string of sold out performances.

‘Mozart!’, which cast Xiah Junsu as its lead, experienced this when they grabbed everyone’s attention with their online ticket reservation site crashing the first day ticket sales began due to a sudden influx of people; this continued on to every single show being sold out. Recently, ‘The Sun’s Song’ experienced the same effect from Taeyeon.
A production representative of ‘Mozart!’ stated that the casting of an idol star is one that cannot be denied because it breathes life into the industry and presents a great opportunity to promote the musical.
But the charm of casting an idol with ticket power goes both ways in such a situation as for a star, a musical is a brilliant opportunity. As musicals require multiple talents such as singing, dancing, and acting, they can become stepping stones for stars who wish to broaden their horizons.
□The ‘Hallyu Wave’ has reached the Musical Industry
Just because a musical is done in Korean, doesn’t mean that the audience will be Korean too. With the appearance of idols on the musical stage came Japanese and Chinese fans flocking to Korea to watch. Production teams began to turn their attention to ‘Hallyu marketing’ in the Asian market by creating leaflets in different languages or showing promotional clips overseas.
‘Hong Gil Dong’, which featured Yesung and Sungmin from ‘Star of Asia’ Super Junior, was held at the Woori Finance Art Hall between February and April and attracted over 800 people from Asia.
Following this, the production team Seoul Symphony Orchestra uploaded promotional videos in Japanese on Japanese websites and went knocking on the doors of overseas markets.
‘The Brothers were Brave’, SHINee’s Onew’s debut musical, created leaflets specially for Japanese fans in their native language. An average of fifteen Japanese tourists watched every performance since the show began in April. Promotional information, such as a description of the performance and photos, have been distributed to them.
□An audience who wants a High Quality Performance
Even fans don’t want their idol singers to appear on stage if they haven’t prepared enough or lack the necessary skills. The reason that production companies cannot go over the top when casting idol stars is because if idols forcefully appear frequently in musicals, the quality of the performance may drop. There is also the stereotype embedded within the minds of the public that a performance with a celebrity cast can’t be a high quality show.
However, it is a reality that idol stars cannot completely focus on musical rehearsals as they have their own busy schedules to complete.
There are quite a few examples of musicals that failed to attract a large crowds because an idol star could not practice or participate in rehearsals due to their busy schedule which resulted in a drop in quality of the overall show along with criticism of the idol star for their unstable singing and lacking acting skills.
One musical representative stated, “It is true that there are many cases where the stars practice so little that they constantly worry whether or not they will make a mistake on stage,” and “It’s frustrating at times because we cannot demand that they focus completely on the musical because we know how packed their schedules are.”
Source: [etoday]
Translation credits: jeeelim5@tohosomnia.net
Shared by: tohosomnia.net
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