Why Encore Stages Are Now Punishment for Kpop Idols?

To current Kpop idols, winning at weekly music shows feel more like a curse than an honor due to the encore segment.

Making a comeback with their mini album titled “EASY” and its eponymous title track, LE SSERAFIM has been dominating the KPOP scene with four consecutive wins on music shows. However, the group sparked controversy due to their live vocals, with recent encore performances being heavily criticized as disastrous.

The encore stage of LE SSERAFIM immediately became a hot topic on fan forums. However, sadly, LE SSERAFIM is not the only case involved in encore controversies.

Earlier, the contemporary group IVE also stirred controversy with their encore performance. Members were accused of avoiding high notes and showcasing their lack of skills.

ENHYPEN and fromis_9 have also faced criticism for displaying poor skills on their encore stages. Many netizens have questioned whether these “singers” truly possess singing abilities.

TWICE is also a prime example of an idol group with disastrous encore stages. Members, especially Momo, visibly showed anxiety on stage when they were forced to sing live. The disastrous encore stage for “More and More” is even considered one of the reasons for TWICE’s declining reputation.

When debuting as a solo artist, Jimin (BTS) achieved great success with a song that performed well on music charts and earned him trophies on music shows. However, his first encore stage was forgettable. This sparked significant controversy as a member of the most famous boy band in K-pop couldn’t deliver a good live performance.

According to reporter Park Sang Hoo of jTBC Entertainment, the “encore” segment for winners on music shows has become a “punishment”.


In particular, the reporter wrote in a recent article, “The encore stages on music shows are hindering idols. When the place to receive congratulations from fans and enjoy together is turned into a place to assess singing skills that have been honed so far, the worry and pressure about the encore stage seem to be increasing.”

For live broadcast stages on terrestrial and cable television, most performers use MR (Music Recorded), including pre-recorded vocals and chorus parts, for reasons such as difficult choreography or adjusting conditions due to a packed schedule. On the other hand, the No.1 encore stage almost completely eliminates all pre-recorded parts, thereby showing the “real” singing ability of each member.


As a result, the interest of K-Pop fandom in encore stages is increasing. In fact, most online communities not only post reviews of artists’ encore videos, but also attempt to subjectively evaluate the singing ability of each member.

A member who performs live stably on the encore stage may seize the opportunity to be recognized for their skills, but those who cannot sing become targets of criticism. Some netizens also make malicious and derogatory comments, mocking idols who perform live with unstable tones.


“When the issue of idols’ live singing continues to be a persistent problem year after year, most K-Pop artists are stigmatized as ‘Idol Performers.’ Some even sarcastically suggest that there should be a Singing Ability Score in the No.1 Cup competition on music shows”, the reporter wrote.

Source: JTBC

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