In Korean culture, everyone ages at the same time. To clarify, everyone turns a year older on January 1 of the new year, regardless of each person’s birthday. So as the year 2011 draws to an end, everyone in Korea is getting ready to turn a year older. Let’s look at the young stars who are on the brink of adulthood. In Korea, the coming of age starts at 20 years old (19 years old in non-Korean age). They are already receiving a lot of attention because of the curiosity and anticipation for how they will shed their youthful image and transform into a more mature, and varietal image.
There are particularly many idols who are coming of age. One of the hottest stars right now is IU, nicknamed the “nation’s younger sister.” She has been actively promoting her “Last Fantasy” album with her title song, “You and I.” Although IU has this “younger sister” image, many people are curious about how she will evolve through the years.
On a recent episode of “Yoo Hee Yeol’s Sketchbook,” IU addressed these thoughts about her coming of age and her development as an artist. Yoo Hee Yeol asked a very thought-provoking and difficult question about her musical journey ahead. He asked if she had a hard time trying to be seen as an idol singer and a mature musician at the same time. IU gave an insightful and honest answer, saying that she believes she has a long way to go to become a serious and mature musician. She also charmingly said, “I’m only turning 20 next month so please wait a bit more for me [to become better].”
Known to be close friends with IU, f(x)’s Luna and T-ara’s Jiyeon are also getting ready to graduate high school and to enter the world of adulthood. SISTAR’s youngest member, Dasom is also turning 20 years old. Additionally, the hottest rookie girl group of the year, A Pink has Eunji and Bomi, who are getting ready to become adults as well.
We can’t forget Yoo Seung Ho and Lee Hyun Woo – child actors who have transformed into romantic, handsome men, shaking the hearts of females everywhere. Yoo Seung Ho, who has already started to play adult roles, is looking to further widen his acting spectrum and show new and different sides of himself. Lee Hyun Woo, who is also actively pursuing his acting career through dramas like “God of Study,” and “Gyebaek,” is expected to show a more mature and innovative image after he comes of age.
What do you think? How do you think these coming of age stars will transform?