Whether you have just gotten into K-Pop or are a lifelong fan, you need to understand what weekly K-Pop shows are and how they function. As the central focus of K-Pop fan culture, they enable the discovery of new idols and more publicity for new music. Everything from their unique sets to point system contributes to an incredibly engaging and fun experience for both fans and idols alike.
The first thing you should know about K-Pop shows is that some are broadcast weekly while awards shows are annual.This article will cover the shows that are broadcast weekly. While every channel that broadcasts its own weekly music showis unique in multiple ways, there is no need to stress out if you miss watching one live or cannot go to a specific one in person. Here are the days of the week and the six main K-Pop music shows that are broadcast on that day:
Tuesday – SBS MTV “The Show”
Wednesday – MBC Music “Show Champion”
Thursday- Mnet “M!Countdown”
Friday – KBS “Music Bank”
Saturday – MBC “Music Core”
Sunday – SBS “Inkigayo”
There are a handful ofreasons that multiple channels broadcast weekly music shows, and one important one is that it gives many artists and groups a chance to shine and gain more public recognition. Another reason is that each show has its own scoring system. One show may score a group on their own split percentages of digital sales, social media engagement, album sales, global fan voting, and broadcast score. Another may only factor digital sales, broadcast score, panel surveys, and albums sales into their system. Many shows have scoring factors that overlap, but some have categories that are unique to them. Most shows have also recently added a YouTube component due to the platform’s algorithm and its ability to capitalize on the immediate publication of videos. The result of all these components and shows is that different groups can win on different shows each week. This differentiation increases the likelihood that a group or artist will win on a show and boost their fanbase.
The next thing to know is that K-Pop award shows have MCs that are usually idols or people from the industry. They help to guide the show along; they moderate it, interview the other idols, and announce the winner. On occasion, they partake in special performances together. If the MCs are idols, they tend to be ones that are more experienced and have been in the K-Pop industry for a while.
Groups must go through an intense rehearsal process before performing on the show. They usually rehearse their song a total of 2-4 times before fans see it. The first rehearsal is a dry run where all the idols wear their name tags so the camera men know who to shoot during which parts of the live performance. There may be a few more dry runs until the group performs in their dress rehearsal that is just like a regular performance. In between the live performances, the idols interact with their fans in the live audience and have fun.
Weekly K-Pop shows are meant to be entertaining for fans and good publicity for idols. A more established group may promote their latest single for a couple weeks on the show while a newer group may perform the same few songs each day for a month. As K-Pop is a highly saturated field of entertainment, this constant stream of music shows gives artists the chance to stand out and promote their work so that fans can find their new favorite groups and songs.
Due to their entertaining nature, the acts are full of complicated choreography, astounding outfits, and intricate sets. K-Pop choreography is iconic, and while a lot of groups stick to the moves they have performed before, sometimes they must adapt to a stage and perform altered choreography. Some choreography is too physically demanding to perform without a certain number of pre-recorded vocals accompanying a song. Consequently, many groups pre-record some of their performance to create a more put-together act. Most shows limit how much of an act can be pre-recorded, so it is unlikely that a group is lip-syncing an entire performance on a music show.
Stage outfits are an immense visual component on weekly music shows. Groups aim to create a cohesive image that simultaneously highlights each of its idols as individuals. The result yields group outfits that follow a color scheme with individual pieces that play to the strengths and personality of the idols.
The sets on the weekly music shows are another large visual aspect of K-Pop performances. Well-known groups are more likely to perform amongst elaborate sets like full landscapes. On the flip side, groups that are not as famous yet perform with simpler light shows behind and around them that utilize screens to create interesting images and color combinations. Somewhere in the middle are the groups that use props or colors to make their performance look like their official music video for a song.
One of the most important things to know is that K-Pop music shows are the culmination of the dedication, perseverance, and talent that idols put into their music all the time. These shows are incredibly important to them both as a form of success and as a measure of public validation. For all of them, performing and winning on a music show was, or is, a dream come true. As a result, it is important to remember that you can support your favorite idols and groups in a respectful manner without tearing down a group that you may not have heard of or do not like as much.
If you want to support the idols that you love the most or find new K-Pop groups, engaging with the weekly music shows by voting, buying digital merchandise, and purchasing albums are great ways to do both. Another way you can keep up with how groups are doing is by tuning into the annual awards shows. You never know—you may be watching live when the next big K-Pop idol gets discovered.
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