20 Questions With ENHYPEN: K-Pop Group Discusses Making the Leap Towards Stardom

Courtesy of BELIFT LAB


Last month, seven-piece K-pop group ENHYPEN made good on their promise with their first mini-album, Border: Day One. As the final seven members on the reality competition I-Land, ENHYPEN have translated their television popularity into millions of streams, with the help of renowned producer Si Hyuk Bang for the six-song project.

Following their mini-album release, the members of ENHYPEN answered Billboard’s 20 questions about bonding as a group, the influence of K-pop groups like BTS, and what fans can expect in the future.

1. What’s the first piece of music that you bought for yourself, and what was the medium? 

JAY: It was BTS’ Wings. “Blood Sweat & Tears” really stood out to me.

2. What was the first concert you saw? 

HEESEUNG: It was a [Korean music icon] Cho Yong-pil concert. I watched it with my family when I was in 6th grade.

3. Who made you realize you could be an artist full-time? 

SUNOO: Watching BTS’ V gave me the assurance that I wanted to become an artist.

4. What’s at the top of your professional bucket list? 

JUNGWON: It’s to show our fans in person our music and performances. It’s the end of the year with many award shows happening, so we can’t forget about the “Rookie of the Year” award either.

5. How did your hometown/city shape who you are? 

JAKE: I think I learned a lot while growing up in Australia. When I was in school, me and friends used to listen to a variety of music, including pop. And that somewhat helps me when performing on stage.

NI-KI: My hometown was always peaceful being surrounded by nature. I think about the outdoor scenery of my hometown when I’m tired.

SUNOO: The people and things around me helped me discover this career path and evolve.

6. What’s the last song you listened to? 

JUNGWON: “Blind” by PRETTYMUCH. I listened to it on the way home at the end of the day.

SUNGHOON: “Monster” by Shawn Mendes and Justin Bieber.

7. If you could see any artist in concert, dead or alive, who would it be? 

JAY:  Zayn Malik.


8. What’s your karaoke go-to? 

SUNOO: “To My Youth” by BOL4, “Blue & Grey” by BTS, “How Can I Love The Heartbreak, You're The One I Love” by AKMU.

JAKE: I’ve never been to karaoke yet, but I would like to sing BTS’ “Dynamite” once I get the chance.

9.  How has the group evolved following its time on I-Land

SUNGHOON: Our teamwork has gotten stronger through consistent meetings and discussions, and our skills have improved by working together and helping each other.

10. What did the group hope to accomplish with the songs on its first mini-album? 

HEESEUNG: We really wanted to have a successful debut, and I think we were able to accomplish that by performing the tracks on our new album, including our lead single, through our debut show.

11. What’s it been like working with Si Hyuk Bang as a producer? 

HEESEUNG: We could relate to “Hitman” Bang’s advice and his approach to music, and it played a significant impact on our music.

JAY: There were difficulties since we were inexperienced, but I think our debut came relatively quickly as many people including “Hitman” Bang guided us step-by-step.

12. Which song on the mini-album has already established itself as a fan favorite based on social media reactions? 

NI-KI: “Given-Taken” seems to be the most popular among the songs in the album. We really want to give back to ENGENE for their love towards our debut song.

13. It’s been a massive year for the global expansion of K-pop. How does it feel to see so many K-pop songs, albums and artists setting records? 

JAKE: It makes me incredibly happy. I first learned about K-pop by seeing BTS on the news while living in Australia. As BTS was a good influence to me, my goal is to someday become a good influence for someone as well.

14. What’s one thing that even the group’s most devoted fans don’t know about them? 

SUNGHOON: I try to actively communicate with our fans as much as I can, so I don’t think there is anything they don’t know about me.

15. What movie always makes you smile? 

JUNGWON: Ratatouille. It makes me feel good every time I watch it.

NI-KI: Home Alone. The plot of a young boy taking revenge on two thieves is exciting.

HEESEUNG: Toy Story. The movie’s theme centers around memories and it’s really touching.

16. What were your childhood dreams? 

SUNOO: Becoming a singer has always been my dream since I was a little kid.

17. What’s one piece of advice you would give to your pre-debut self? 

NI-KI: There are moments when it’s difficult to be in Korea alone, but if you remember to be thankful to your parents, who are always rooting for you, and do your best to move forward, you will be able to achieve your dream.

18. What’s your message to fans who have been supporting ENHYPEN -- and waiting for this first mini-album to arrive? 

JAY: Thanks to our ENGENE, the seven of us could meet as a group and debut. It’s our turn to return that love and move on towards the future. We love you and are always thankful for you.

19. How did it feel when you listened to the final master of your very first album for the first time? 

JAKE: I was so excited. Filled with joy. We worked so hard on recording it, so we felt a sense of accomplishment and took pride in it.

20. How do you imagine your first in-person concert to be like? 

JUNGWON: I would be very nervous to present our performances for the first time to our fans. It would feel like a dream come true since it’s THE thing that we want to do most at the moment.

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