♥ 🙂

TVXQ (Tong Vfang Xien Qi) is a Korean boy band that has gained popularity in Japan, Taiwan, China, and other East-Asian countries. Today, it has become one of Asia’s most influential pop groups, and is one of the top groups of the Korean Wave. TVXQ, their international name, is referred to by various other names. Its Korean title is Dong Bang Shin Ki (or Gi) ‘(동방신기)’, which is abbreviated to DBSK (or DBSG). The Japanese equivalent is Tōhōshinki ‘(東方神起)’, which is abbreviated to THSK. The group debuted in South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and China throughout 2004. TVXQ is composed of five male members specializing in the areas of dance, A cappella, various drama acting, and pop with an R&B vibe.

The Korean phrase “Dong Bang Shin Ki” translates almost literally into “Rising Gods of the East.” This five-man dance team came into being after an audition in 2004. The contestants of the audition were divided into groups of their peers and received training to find potential talents. All the members of TVXQ were originally the lead vocals of other singing groups. The first member to join was Kim JunSu (김준수). He enjoyed singing at his chruch when he was little. At the age of 14 he was brought into the band through a televised talent search which Moon Hee Jun and Kangta from H.O.T. were judges. His vocals won over the judges and won him thorough training for the next six years until he debuted as Xiah JunSu (시아준수; Xiah is pronounced SHe-ah in Korean). Xiah was a stage name that Junsu himself chose, explaining to his fans that the name was short for “Asia,” as Asia is pronounced “a-shi-a” in Korean. “Xiah” would be a reference to his desire to become not only a star in Korea, but a star recognized all throughout the continent. The group’s second member, Jung YunHo (정윤호), secured his spot in TVXQ through a dance competition. Prior to this, he accumulated some musical experience as a rapper and backup dancer for K-pop singer Dana in her Diamond video [1]. His chosen stage name is U-know YunHo, which sounds like “You know” in English. He is the second oldest member in TVXQ and is also the band’s leader. Kim JaeJoong (김재중) left his hometown in Chungnam to audition for SM Entertainment. Having left the shelter of home, he experienced poverty and strife before becoming a celebrity. He debuted under the name a fortune teller foretold years before: YoungWoong JaeJoong (영웅재중, also known as Hero which is the English equivalent). YoungWoong means “hero” in Korean, hence his international name, Hero. Shim ChangMin (심창민) was grouped with the youngest participants in the audition. Like Xiah JunSu, he impressed the judges with his vocal powers. He joined the band under the name ChoiKang ChangMin (최강창민; the English counterpart to his stage name is Max). ChoiKang in Korean means “the best;” “Max” became an international rendition of this name. Six months before the group’s debut, a final member was added. Park YooChun (박유천) lived in Virginia for roughly four years. Yoochun’s stage name, Micky, means “ambitious” and “accomplishes goals” in Hanmoon (Chinese characters). As the winner of a talent show, he was granted the opportunity to sign with SM Entertainment in Korea. He now performs under the stage name Micky Yoochun (믹키유천).

TVXQ made their first appearance in 2003 during a Christmas time showcase featuring fellow SM Entertainment star BoA and Britney Spears. They performed their debut single “Hug” as well as an Acappella rendition of “O Holy Night” alongside BoA. The group eventually released two singles before their first album in 2004. TVXQ surprised everybody by being #1 on Korean music charts 3 months after their debut. For preparation for their first album, the band recorded the single “Tri-Angle” with BoA and The TRAX. BoA’s profound popularity in Japan, alongside The TRAX’s evolvement in said country, helped to promote the awareness overseas of the new boy band.

Going Overseas
Tong Vfang Xien Qi has also released albums and singles in China. SM Entertainment had once even considered adding a Chinese member to the group to help boost popularity within the country. However, SM Entertainment has abandoned the idea due to the overflowing amount of complaints from their fan club Cassiopeia (named after the constellation near the Big Dipper). TVXQ’s fans chose the name “Cassiopeia” for their fan club because the constellation has 5 stars in its galaxy, and TVXQ has 5 members. Their single “Rising Sun” from the self-titled album has enjoyed great popularity in Korea, China, Taiwan, and Singapore. TVXQ has toured in concerts, made guest appearances, and participated in numerous commercials throughout several Asian countries.

Increasing Popularity
In 2005 and 2006, TVXQ released Banjun Theater that featured the boys as budding actors. They have acted in their own one- or two-episode dramas titled First Love (Parts 1 and 2), The Masked Fencer, King’s Men, YunHo’s Tokyo Holiday, Dangerous Love, Finding Lost Time, Uninvited Guest, and The Most Unforgettable Girl in My Life. In the summer of 2006, they also released a four-episode series known as VACATION, and are due to have their next drama Dating on Earth in the fall of 2006. TVXQ have also released an OST (Original Sound Track) for their short drama series, VACATION. TVXQ has also gained a significant amount of popularity around Asia. They were the first Asian group to win Thailand’s Music Award for Best Music Video for their hit “Rising Sun”. Also, the first artist to win 2 Thailand’s Music Awards: Popular Music Video Award and Asian Most Favorite Artist. They are also one of the few Korean groups that can draw 40,000 fans to one concert and have sufficiently secured their place in Japan as well. Their seventh Japanese single Sky reached third place on the Oricon charts, making them one of the few non-Japanese artists to have reached the top five. The song was used as the background music for a Baskin Robin’s commercial, as well. As of August 2006, they are performing with a-nation and will return to Korea to assemble their third album before recording their 8th Japanese single. Also, they have topped both the Japanese and Korean charts on the Malaysian radio show “988” twice with their singles “Begin” and “The East’s Fighting Spirit” respectively. The show has an audience of about 4.2 million listeners, reaching as far as Singapore, who voted for their singles via the internet, as well as other means.

Credits: Wikipedia

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