10 Korean Idols Who You Might Not Know Grew Up Outside Of Korea

There’s always lots to learn about your favorite stars, and some facts may just surprise you. While these K-pop idols were born in South Korea, they actually lived abroad during their childhood. If you’re wondering which idols might have grown up in your corner of the world, just keep reading!

1. Chungha

Former I.O.I member and soloist queen Chungha is fluent in English, something new fans might not know. The reason why? She grew up in Dallas, Texas! She lived there for seven or eight years when she was younger, going by the English name Annie Kim.

2. NCT’s Jaehyun

NCT’s Jaehyun looks pretty comfortable hanging out in New York City, which shouldn’t be too surprising considering he grew up not too far from the city! Jaehyun went to elementary school in Connecticut for four years, earning his place in NCT’s “Foreign Swaggers” line.

3. ITZY’s Lia

While all of the members of ITZY are great English speakers, Lia tends to take the lead in English interviews for a good reason – she used to live in Toronto, Canada when she was a child! Her stage name even comes from her English name, Julia Choi.

4. DAY6’s Young K

It’s probably a given that most DAY6 fans know that Jae grew up outside of South Korea (he was born in Argentina and raised in the United States), but did you know that bassist Young K spent four years of his life in Toronto, Canada? His English name is Brian Kang, a name you might hear the other members call him every now and then.

5. Sandara Park

Sandara Park was born in Busan, South Korea, but she moved to the Philippines for a while before returning to South Korea to debut as part of 2NE1. She’s immensely popular among Filipino K-pop fans, and she’s one of the few K-pop idols who speaks Tagalog fluently.

6. AB6IX’s Lee Dae Hwi

Former Wanna One member and AB6IX maknae Lee Dae Hwi is a very eloquent English speaker, which isn’t too surprising once you learn that he lived in Los Angeles, California for six years of his childhood. He also lived in Osaka, Japan for a few years. His English name is David while his Japanese name is Daiki.

7. CL

Another former 2NE1 member who grew up all over the world, CL was born in Seoul but lived and studied in both France and Japan. She speaks Korean, English, French, and Japanese, and her global experiences are just part of the reason why she’s an international sensation.

8. PENTAGON’s Hongseok

You might have noticed that PENTAGON’s main vocalist Hongseok is fluent in English – he did spend several years of his childhood in the United States after all. However, a lot of fans may not know that he also lived in Singapore and China in his youth, spending around 11 years of his life outside of South Korea.

9. BLACKPINK’s Jennie

BLACKPINK is a super international group, with two out of four members born outside of South Korea. However, you may not know that main rapper Jennie lived and studied in New Zealand for five years! She’s a fluent English speaker with a charming New Zealand accent that has captured the hearts of fans all over the world.

10. Stray Kids’ Han

Stray Kids’ Aussie line (consisting of Bang Chan and Felix) is a well-known part of the Stray Kids dynamic, but there’s another member who grew up overseas that you might not know about – rapper Han! He lived in Malaysia for much of his childhood, eventually returning to South Korea and debuting as a part of Stray Kids.

Did any of these surprise you? Do you know any other Korean idols who grew up outside of South Korea? Let us know in the comments!

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