This year, Korean entertainment agency YG Entertainment struck gold with the comeback of one of their seasoned K-pop groups, Big Bang. Though Big Bang has been around since 2005, they never made an impact similar to Girls’ Generation, Wonder Girls, or Super Junior. However, their latest comeback — being this and last year — has proven to be a gold mine for YG Entertainment, especially with their song “Bang Bang Bang” making it on the iTunes U.S. Top 100 chart during its release.
And just so it is known, YG Entertainment is no stranger when it comes to worldwide popularity. Along with Big Bang, they’re the agency that has the one artist responsible for “Gangnam Style,” Psy.
Yet, two tastes of international popularity is not enough for YG Entertainment. They want to continue signing on groups, hoping they become the next Big Bang or Psy. Ergo, YG Entertainment is holding global auditions to find them.
According to KpopStarz, YG Entertainment is holding auditions for vocal, rap, and dance positions. Applicants must be male and between the ages of 11 and 23. For those who fit the criteria, they have two ways of applying. The first is to download the application at the YG Audition website then submitting it via email. The second is to bring the application to one of four auditions venues, which are listed below.
- August 29, 2015 – Busan, South Korea (Dongju University)
- September 5, 2015 – Seoul, South Korea (YG Global Training Center)
- September 12, 2015 – Los Angeles, California, U.S. (Pending Location)
- September 19, 2015 – New York City, New York, U.S. (Pending Location)
There are other auditions confirmed for both Tokyo and Osaka in Japan, but an audition date has not been set yet.
Though the open auditions are a great opportunity for anyone to be part of a K-pop group, there has been some backlash, as shown on the YG Entertainment Auditions Official Facebook Page. Some fans hoped auditions would expand to other parts of the world, not just places where talent is expected to be in abundance. For example, Kypin Kywin made it known that there would be plenty of talented applicants in the Philippines. Another issue brought up is why there are no global auditions for girls.
To be fair, YG Entertainment is truly trying something new with their global auditions, and they may get some things wrong initially. Usually, entertainment agencies would scout the public for potential stars. That is how both Jessica and Krystal Jung were found, the former being in Girls’ Generation (formerly) and the latter being in f(x). By expanding their range, YG Entertainment not only widens their choice selections, but are also able to innovate K-pop by signing those who have K-pop idol potential, but may not necessarily be Korean.
[Image via YG Entertainment]