Koreans Got Talent: Auditioning for U.S. Army Gigs in Korea

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    K-pop's talent factories and the popularity of televised pop music auditions have placed Korea's contemporary auditioning processes in the spotlight. But under what conditions did auditions take place in the past, and on the basis of what criteria? This study investigates the ways in which aspiring pop music talents auditioned in the 1950s, when many of Korea's veteran pop music celebrities were first discovered. A site of transcultural negotiation and compromise, the auditions organized during and after the Korean War by the Eighth United States Army in Korea were part of an operation that sought to meet a wide range of criteria for music entertainment. Like those applied by Korean talent factories today, those criteria comprised far more than mere musical talent.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)59-79
    JournalSituations: Cultural Studies in the Asian Context
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2018


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