Wonder Girls made their comeback after an 18 month hiatus with their second album “Wonder World.” The girl group was thankful and apologetic for leaving their fans in Korea for so long and hoped that the recent album would be a present for them.
Their emptiness in Korea was meaningless. As soon as their album was released, the main tracks, “Be My Baby,” “Me, in,” and “G.N.O.,” were top spots on the search engines and on the music charts. Wonder Girls were undisputable. The times spent in America were not only very important to the girls, but also valuable.
The girl group left for America after the success of “Nobody” in 2009, amid fans’ anxiety and expectations. They wanted to boldly challenge the biggest music industry. Wonder Girls let their name be known through a variety of participations, such as idol group Jonas Brothers’ concert tour. However, as America was very different from Korea, their activities did not come into sight and it took a while for the popularity to rise.
Leader Sunye emphasized, “We still have a lot more to go in America but at the time all of the members wanted to go at the same time. While spending time there we matured tremendously. We of course knew the expectations and the goals we were supposed to achieve but we did not let it pressure us. We had a dream and a vision for activities in America so we wanted everyone to feel happy and touched through our songs on stage. Whatever happened, we wanted to influence as the Wonder Girls. We treated every stage as our last one.”
Ye Eun stated, “We always say it but those times really did help us grow. It was a time for us to independently mature. New York is a small world with diverse cultures and people and we were in it. Some ask why we left but it was one of the most significant and precious times in my life.”
Although leaving for America was a big impact on Wonder Girls, how different would it have been if they left during the “K-Pop boom” as now?
Ye Eun responded, “If we would have advanced to America right now it would be easier than 2009. But being overseas really taught me how much important language is. When we were interviewed it was hard when our English was not as fluent. We are very thankful that we went through that barrier and can now fluently speak English. It is a relief we took the first step into this before any other girl group.”
When asked to give advice as sunbaes (seniors) who advanced to America, Wonder Girls humbly declined and said, “Truthfully we did leave for America early but it was because the sunbaes who already made it easier for us. We cannot really pick a specific person but all of the sunbaes were helpful. It was because of everyone’s effort that K-Pop rose to where it is now.”
Wonder Girls will star in Teen Nick’s movie “Wonder Girls at the Apollo” next year in America. They will continue to participate as singers but actresses as well. Their challenge for America is still being progressed.