A group of Korean students from Wheaton College, located in Chicago, Illinois recently illustrated the evolution of K-Pop dance spanning two decades (1994-2015) at their annual campus-wide Lunar New Year Festival!
They described K-Pop as “a genre that dominated the Korean music market for the past 20 years, incorporating elements of western pop, hip hop and R&B.”
Starting from the 1990’s period, the group first danced to KGM‘s “Wrongful Meeting” (1994), an upbeat dance pop song, where they formed a single, uniform line swaying right to left before scattering. They then moved onto H.O.T‘s “Candy” (1996), a cheerful pop song with quick dance steps.
The students then jump into the 21st century, starting with Wonder Girls‘ “Tell Me” (2007), which is a cheeky and girly dance. We also see Brown Eyed Girls‘ “Abracadabra” (2009), which is a song with strong dance beats, accompanied with the iconic hip swaying. They also danced to super idol girl group Girls’ Generation‘s “Gee,” which was also released in 2009. Following this was Super Junior‘s “Sorry Sorry” – another popular song with simple yet captivating moves.
To portray the more recent years, the students dance to the impeccably charismatic and fierce girl group 2NE1‘s “I Am The Best,” with both a futuristic and robotic feel to it. They then move onto what could be easily titled the “World’s viral song and dance,” PSY‘s “Gangnam Style.” We also get to see the memorable dance to one of famous boy group Big Bang‘s iconic songs, “Fantastic Baby.” Like their cover of 2NE1’s “I Am The Best,” the dance to “Fantastic Baby” included a couple futuristic elements, matching well with the space-like beats in the song.
The students then dance to Crayon Pop‘s “Bar Bar Bar” (2013), a catchy song that quickly shot the group to fame. Into 2014, the students dance to Orange Caramel‘s “Catallena,” a fun dance mixed with uptempo beats. We also see 2pm‘s “Go Crazy,” a song with funky intro beats, where the students even seem to form a motorcycle shape to represented that element in the original choreography. The final song in the compilation was monster rookie duo Akdong Musician‘s “200%,” a soulful funky song accompanied by a cute a charming dance.
It can be seen that many dance elements dating back to 1990s can still be seen in today’s dances. However, in the more recent years, there are also new dance moves that are clean, sharp and some dance moves that combine cultures from across the globe, and more creative dance moves that mimic objects or even living things!
Do you think much has changed in the world of K-Pop dances over the years? Check out the full dance video below!