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Hard life: 5 ways BTS, BLACKPINK and other K-pop idols struggled as trainees

Published on 16/07/2021
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Becoming a huge K-pop idol doesn’t happen in a day – it takes years of training and thousands of hours of practice. Even record-breaking bands like BTS speak of their harsh trainee days when they were squeezed together into a tiny shared flat, a far cry from

Today we look back at some bitter, old memories that idols can now recall with a laugh.

RM used to share a room with nine other trainees

BTS’ old dorm life. Photo: @blackswanjimin/Twitter
BTS’ old dorm life. Photo: @blackswanjimin/Twitter

In a March episode of You Quiz on the Block, BTS’ RM shared that he used to live together with up to nine other people at one time, with around 30 different trainees moving in and out over that period. It definitely must have been hectic, and RM added that they would share clothes along with a single bathroom and computer. Sometimes RM even had to go to the public bathroom outside or run to the toilet at nearby shops.

BTS – no longer needing to share a room! Photo: @btshelpsindia/Twitter
BTS – no longer needing to share a room! Photo: @btshelpsindia/Twitter

Even after their debut, BTS is known for going through harsh early years in their career when the seven members moved from place to place, with one living space being a remodelled office, according to The Korea Economic Daily.

Blackpink used to live with cockroaches and centipedes

Besides sharing a room, Blackpink had some uninvited guests at their place as well. On the fifth episode of the reality show 24/365 with Blackpink, the girls looked back on the times when they lived together … in a room that had cockroaches and centipedes.

Jisoo said that they would trap one creepy-crawly inside a cup, but as soon as they did that, they would see another creeping by. The girls remembered that Lisa was the brave one who would catch big centipedes with her bare hands!

Rosé describing the size of the centipedes that Blackpink had in their old room. Photo: @Blackpink/YouTube
Rosé describing the size of the centipedes that Blackpink had in their old room. Photo: @Blackpink/YouTube

Jennie said, “It was a hard time for us”, adding they were penniless as trainees and would usually buy just eggs and strawberry jam with their limited budget. Scrambled eggs with jam was their go-to daily dish.

Twice ate in restrooms

Twice’s Dahyun, Sana and Jeongyeon. Photo: @JYPETWICE/Twitter
Twice’s Dahyun, Sana and Jeongyeon. Photo: @JYPETWICE/Twitter
Weight checks were another tough step that K-pop trainees had to go through, and Twice was no exception. In their April V Live broadcast, they said that they couldn’t find a place to eat while training, as if they were caught snacking in the practice room, they would be sent to the gym to work off the calories.

The place they decided on? Jeongyeon revealed that the girls went to the restroom as a hideaway spot, and ate a lot there as trainees. Although Nayeon commented that it was actually a clean and good place to eat, Jihyo said that it was smelly, with Tzuyu adding that the toilets were often clogged up. Here’s hoping Twice can enjoy snacks in more hygienic conditions these days …

Girls’ Generation cleaned bathrooms, windows and the cafeteria

Girls’ Generation in their early days. Photo: @meke_sound1/Twitter
Girls’ Generation in their early days. Photo: @meke_sound1/Twitter

The restroom seems to be a common fixture in K-pop stars’ good old days. The OG iconic girl group, Girls’ Generation, shared that, as trainees, they had to clean the bathroom, the training room, windows and the cafeteria.

On the show Healing Camp, Aren’t You Happy in 2014, Sooyoung explained that the system was at its strictest while they were trainees.

Long, long practice hours

K-pop performances are famous for their coordinated dance moves paired with stellar vocals, and that all comes down to long, long hours of practice.

Luna from f(x) shared in Human Documentary People is Good that she practised up to 20 hours a day, and many times stayed up all night. Jimin from BTS said something similar on You Quiz on the Block – that he practised until 4am in the morning and woke up at 6:30am.

It seems that most successful K-pop groups have had to bend over backwards for their training, as the Blackpink girls revealed in Netflix documentary Blackpink: Light Up the Sky that they practised every day for 14 hours to perfect their performances and keep them consistent.

Source: scmp.com

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