When Reebok unveiled the faces of its Always Classic project, it was clear the iconic footwear and apparel company was dedicated to showing a diverse range of styles and individuals from around the world with one of its freshest stars coming in 16-year-old K-pop star Somi.
The spring/summer 2018 campaign sees Ariana Grande, Rae Sremmurd, Teyana Taylor, Lil Yachty, models Gigi Hadid and Sharina Gutierrez, graffiti artists Felipe Pantone and Sany, and Somi, with the rising K-pop sensation rocking the Club C sneaker in her biggest global spotlight to date.
“Always Classic celebrates people who defy status quo and is reflective of those who express what it means to be classic across the globe in their own terms,” Caroline Machen, Senior Director Brand Management at Reebok, tells Billboard of the decision to enlist Somi in the campaign. “Somi has stood out as someone who pushes beyond the expected. She has worked with our counterparts in Korea and we were excited to work with her globally for the first time. She encapsulates the next generation.”
No doubt that Somi’s rise to stardom has seen her consistently pushing forward with her dreams and doing it her way even through letdowns.
In mid-2015, the Korean-Canadian participated on the singing competition show Sixteen to land a spot in what would become Korea’s future girl group sensation TWICE. A then-14-year-old Somi did not make the final lineup but — undeterred — auditioned and ended up winning first place on another sensational singing competition in Produce 101 a year later. She was the youngest member and the face of super-popular girl group I.O.I, leading her to exciting musical opportunities (collaborating with the likes of Eric Nam and 2PM‘s Jun. K) and TV spots (starring on Sister’s Slam Dunk and Idol Drama Operation Team).
Or, as Somi put it in a special behind-the-scenes video with Reebok: “I’m an unexpected, classic girl…I do what I want to do.” Check out exclusive photos from the shoot only on Billboard below: