King of Masked Singer is a show that features celebrities who perform anonymously in costumes and are unmasked if they receive the least number of votes. A version of the show has aired in at least 30 countries, but the show originated in Korea on MBC in 2015.
The format for the show in Korea is: Each competition lasts for two episodes, with the singers competing one-on-one in three elimination rounds. They are given elaborate masks which are made by designer Hwang Jae-geun to wear in order to conceal their identity, thus removing factors such as popularity, career and age that could lead to prejudiced voting. In the first round, both contestants sing the same song, while in the second and third round they each sing a solo song. The winners of each pair are selected by the audience and panel of celebrities through instant live votes. The identities of the singers are not revealed until they have been eliminated. The winner of the third round challenges the previous competition's Mask King, and is either eliminated or becomes the new Mask King.
For this week’s Flashback Friday, I’ll be sharing the top winning Mask Kings per year. This is a great group of singers, and even though I’m not totally familiar with most of them, I think it’s always nice to take some time out to hear some amazing vocals.
There was actually a tie for most wins this year. We’ll start with a performance from “CBR Cleopatra”. He’s singing Noel’s “If By Chance”. This is probably my fav stage from this post. Also I really like this hair on Hong Jinyoung lol.
[Who is it?]He was unmasked and revealed to be singer and vocal coach Kim Yeonwoo. He also appeared in another popular singing show on MBC, I Am A Singer.
The second Mask King for 2015 is “Young And Innocent Cosmos”. She’s singing “Somebody’s Dream”, originally by Bom Yeoreum Gaeul Kyeoul.
[Who is it?]She was unmasked and revealed to be Gummy. I thought this one was super easy lol. I don’t think anyone else has a husky voice like hers. She remains an OST queen.
The King Mask for this year was “Music Captain Of Our Local”. He also has the highest number of Mask King wins in show history, with a total of nine. He’s singing “Lazenca, Save Us”, from the rock band N.EX.T. 4 years later and he’s still reverent to the show, MBC put out an hour long complication of his appearances a few months ago, and it has over 12 million hits.
[Who is it?]He was unmasked and revealed to be Guckkasten’s lead singer Ha Hyunwoo.
The top Mask King for 2017 is “9 Songs, Mood Maker”. She’s singing Jung Jooil’s “Hug Me”.
[Who is it?]She was unmasked and revealed to be singer Sohyang. Apparently they call her “Korea’s Mariah Carey” because she can hit those high notes. She is also an author, who has published many fantasy novels. How cool is that? This performance on Immortal Songs from 2014 is still one of the highest ranked stages in the show’s history. Yes, that is Michael Bolton lol.
The top Mask King for 2018 is “The East Invisibility”. She has the second highest number of Mask King wins on the show, with 8 in total. Here’s her performance of Yim Jaebom’s “Love”.
[Who is it?]She was unmasked and revealed to be singer Son Seungyeon. She was the first winner of the The Voice Korea, and is a very frequent guest (and winner) on Immortal Songs. I think she also sings rock very well too.
I really love some of the names and the masks, here is “Unrealistically Handsome Guy” lol. Here he is with Na Yoon Kwon’s “If It Was Me”.
[Who is it?]He was unmasked and revealed to be Lee Seokhoon from the vocal group SG Wannabe. He was also a vocal trainer/mentor for a few seasons of Produce 101.
There is an up and coming Mask King right now, "Chow Yun-fat". He’s up to 6 wins so far, which would already put him in the top 3 winning Mask Kings. He’s rumored to be Winner’s Kang Seungyoon.
Does your country have their own version of Masked Singer, Omona? And do you have a favorite King of Masked Singer performance?
source: MBCentertainment 1 2 3 4 5 6 7, NCT SEY, Guckkasten Official, KBS Kpop 1 2, KBS WORLD & Wiki