A recent wave of young idol singers in K-Pop is causing a stir amongst the Korean public. Singers such as 4minute's Kwon Sohyun (15) have been in the industry since elementary school. And while some fans love seeing artists as young as them on stage, others are worried about the possible effects that fame could have on them.
One current idol anonymously spoke about being a high school student idol: "I began living as a member of society sooner than any of my friends, but it was merely broadcast activities that I was doing, nothing else. If we tried to leave the group, we can see that we know nothing about society. For a long time, our hearts have just been in chaos," he said about his mental state.
In order to prevent any of these issues, some companies have decided to take action. The most prominent has been Cube Entertainment, home of 4minute and BEAST. Every week, the Cube idols are able to meet with a mental health specialist and they can train their personalities and characters to be strong. Cube executive, Hong Seungsung, said, "Our singers are able to receive education and mental consultation."
Hong also feels Cube has a responsibility to the families of 4minute and BEAST: "Their parents entrusted them to us while they were still in their 10s, and therefore it is our responsibility to think only about their futures. And because the effects of becoming a celebrity is greatly increased the younger a person is, we value character building for our trainees before they become famous in order to avoid problems."
Original Source: WoWKorea.jp
Translation Source: 4minutes International Forum