[Trans] Performance Unit - Ize Magazine Interview:
Q: It seems like Jun and The8 korean skill has improved a lot. Jun: Recently, when I talk with The8, we not only use chinese but we mix both chinese and korean. I use chinese only when there’s a word that we don’t know. Not too long ago we learn the word friend…shop? Friendship? From the members. Hoshi: In our chinese textbook there’s this sentence written there ‘Cheers for our friendship’ . Jun asked ‘What’s friendship?’ and I explain while using hand gestures “The feel that we’re feeling now”. Jun: We even put our arms around each other’s shoulders. The8: I’m having fun as I learn korean. Slang like ‘Jimotmi’ (Sorry I couldn’t protect you), and ‘Simkung’ (heart attack). Hoshi: We told The8 to guess ‘Jimotmi’ means and he said “Sorry I can’t do it now?”. (Laugh) We said that it’s a correct answer.
Q. Probably you don’t have to talk much when you’re discussing about performance. Hoshi: Jun and The8 understand us when we speak korean. They have been with us for a long time so they get used to our accent and our pronounciation. When we’re doing choreography we don’t detailedly explain it like “Stretch your arms and hold it” but as we’re doing that moves, we say “Do it like this”.
Q. So, does Hoshi made most of the choreography? Hoshi: For the 1st album, most of the choreography was made by me but on the next album.. all performance unit members will be participating in making the choreography. For MBC [Show! Music Core] performance, I take a lead role but other members helped me a lot. I always stick only on one style, so I can only show one kind of color. I make it possible for other members to participate, so we have various (style for choreography). Dino: I really like making a new/fresh choreography. As example, I match the choreography with the lyrics for ‘Oh My God’ that was revealed on MBC MUSIC [Seventeen Project – Debut Big Plan]. (Laugh) I’ve been thinking on “How the group with a lot of members can make choreography differently”, “How to make this member to do the choreography”, etc.
Q. It seems like each of you have a different style. Hoshi: Jun does martial arts so he’s strong. So I make him a center for powerful moves, and if we need moves that gives an impact like tumbling - I make The8 do it. I feel that The8’s swift moves are cool. He makes his body moves naturally. When I see it ‘Ah, I should’ve learn tumbling when I was young’. The8 taught me how to do it but I almost injured. (Laugh) After that I never try it again because i’m scared. Dino: If The8 hyung has swift body, Hoshi hyung has swift choreography style. He’s good on making a swift moves. On the other hand I have a slow choreography style so there are times when I want to be like Hoshi hyung. Jun: I think I’m still lacking when I dance a power-less moves like how Dino does. I can’t make the moves feels alive. During our dance practice I always watch how Hoshi does it from the back and say ‘Ah, I need to lessen my power for this moves’.
Q. The choreography changes every time, I think it’s not easy to come up with the ideas. Hoshi: We made those choreography by discussing it with all of Seventeen members, not only Performance unit members. As we were promoting for 8 weeks we came up with a lot of ideas like tabble tennis, surfing, gang-gang sullae, sharon flower has bloomed, search for a vein of water, etc but as we’re trying to do it, it’s kind of boring. Things that we really do on stage are only tug-of-war, bowling, and concert. Bowling is an idea that came out after thinking hard so it’s very memorable. The8: We discussed it for 4~5 hours. Dino: For one of ‘Adore U’ ending, we kick the ball as if we’re on soccer match. Mingyu hyung kick the ball as if he scored a goal, then we kiss our ring as we’re looking on the camera and I feel that it was cool. I think we can show how good our teamwork is on the stage.
Q. Do you play soccer often? The8: Yes we do. We’re a performance team so people probably think we’re the most athletic members but in reality we’re the least athletic. (Laugh) Jun: I never play a soccer before, so when we play it I just stay still. But I do my best on playing basketball. Dino: Ah, for the members who like sports like S.Coups hyung, they really do their best on it, but I’m kinda scared of basketball (ball). It’s so hard and when I dribble it my hand hurts. Hoshi: Long time ago, I twist my hands when I passed a basketball (ball) and since then I can’t play it well. I’m just in charge of cheering. Like shouting “fighting!”. 4 of us are the type who do sports by mouth. On the side we would be like “Nice nice!” (laugh) actually the most fun thing is playing hide and seek at the dorm. Our dorm is wide, so there are a lot of places to hide. We would do rock-papper-scissor to choose the tagger, and hide after turning off all of the lights.
Q. Who’s the member who really bad at hiding? Dino: Mingyu hyung is tall so he often get caught. Hoshi: But he hides well. I think you’re lucky when you can find him. Jun: Long time ago when we play it, there’s time when Vernon disappeared. Was it on the closet? Well, he was sleeping in the kitchen. Hoshi: He was hiding on a narrow space between TV shelf and veranda. He cover himself with blanket and slept. We find him after we finished playing it and when we turn on all the lights.
Q. Other than hide and seek, what do you do to spend your time together? Hoshi: We play initial consonant game, window shopping, sometimes we go to watch movie too. Not long ago, I watched “Inside Out” together with Junghan hyung and Joshua hyung and I got inspiration for the performance. Though I can only understand (the movie) 20%. Jun and The8 often bring us out to eat chinese food. Chinese foods are so delicious. I can’t remember foods name but the most memorable one is beef tendon. The texture is same with pork feet. Also… chives and egg? It’s delicious too. Hotpot is nice too but the spice smell is so strong. But i’m used to it now. The8: Me and Jun always go to eat in the morning. I feel exhausted if I don’t eat anything. Jun: Recently we often eat soondae soup. The8: Actually, not only for breakfast but I need to eat thrice a day. I’m too skinny so when other members are excersicing, I eat. Then I will go to exercise and eat again. I need to gain weight.
Q. You need to stay physically fit and diet at the same time, do you have any difficulties? Dino: instead of especially managing physical strength, we exercise by doing basic choreography together at the practice room. We will feel energized and will be overflowing with energy. Hoshi: As for me.. my diet method is, eat meal thrice a day. Also, decrease the number of pork belly that I’m going to eat. I don’t really like eating snack. Jun: I always bring snacks with me, I will gain weight if I eat a lot of chips so I always eat jelly. It feels weird when I don’t chew anything as I’m listening to the music. Hoshi: But don’t you gain more weight if you eat jelly? (Laugh) Jun really likes sour things. Jun: Actually I often eat jelly because I can chew it for a long time. Also, do you know plum? In China they sell a prune, I bought it and eat it. Other members can’t eat it because it’s too sour.
Q. Activities for next album will be starting soon, what do you want to do or try during the break period? Hoshi: Um, to say that it’s a break period or holidays.. we’re really busy now. But if we have time, I want to go to waterpark together with the members The8: What…? What is that? Hoshi: You know. That place that Nana noona advertise. Place to play with water. The8: Ah, I know. I want to go there too or to beach! I really happy when we go to Haeundae after we finished fansign in Busan. Although it was cold, and we didn’t have much time to play around. I actually really likes water. My mom used to be swimming instructor. It’s not that I exactly learn how to swim but I just follow it and get used to it. Dino: I personally want time to improve my skills. I want to personally make the choreography, and write rap lyrics. If I do these during the activities, I can’t focus on it because I’m too tired.
Q. Hyungs who said they want to go on a trip must be feeling embarrassed. Dino: But! I’m not against the idea of going on a trip. I want to go to waterpark too. Indeed, water over mountain! since it’s summer. (Laugh)
Nayeon, whose entire body emits “vitamin C” from head to toe, is undeniably the best lifeblood for Twice. It was made clear that her clever appearance differed from how she spoke warmly and candidly, no matter who she talked to. “I’m a real scatterbrain. I’m often told that I’m like a fool too. The pressure of taking good care of all the younger members, when I can’t even properly take care of myself? I think this all arose while Sixteen was shooting. But because I spent time with the younger members as just friends, we’re on quite close terms now. Chances to debut in Twice were disappearing so it was a difficult period for me, but each time I could endure because there was Jihyo and Jeongyeon. For six years, we had stuck together, suffered hardships, and willed each other on every day. Every year since 2010, I’ve spent Christmas with them.”
JEONGYEON · 20
Picking apart the detailed appearance of beautiful Jeongyeon, there’s something that rests in her eyes. With a preference for cheer over gravity, she is the main character in softening the team’s atmosphere. “Although it’s not the case now, I used to be a bit chubby once. When I was little, and to help with dieting, I started playing the buk and jang-gu [t/n: types of drums] on my mom’s recommendation, who asked if I wanted to try samulnori [t/n: traditional Korean percussion]. While I was seriously thinking about specializing in it, I entered JYP as a trainee through its 6th open recruitment. Standing on stage has a big meaning to me. It’s a paradise I dream of. A lot of people worry that it’s going to get busier and harder now that we’ve debuted, but I like being busy more. My main dream was to have these activities that leave me out-of-body and breath. I want to get first place on a music program, and I want to shoot a pictorial too. But the most important thing is that I’d like to go with Twice all the way to the end.”
MOMO · 20
The one who always turned off the practice room lights late at night was Momo. She grinded through both dance and song perseveringly, with nothing but a “practice bug” to send time off. A video of her and her older sister dancing that was uploaded to Youtube was her ticket into JYP, and she joined Twice as the team’s official dancer. “They said I was determined about dancing since I was three years old. They said I cried and asked to be sent to the dance academy my older sister attended… like a baby demanding to be bought a tricycle. That’s why dancing is something I’m confident in. I was eliminated once in Sixteen. I was desolate, what do I do now? So I was really surprised when producer Park Jinyoung added my name to the ones who passed in the end. It feels like I’m walking in a dream. I think he looked kindly on how I worked hard, only clinging to the hopes of debut. My goal is to become someone like Rain or Lee Hyori.”
SANA · 20
Somewhere in Sana’s body, a comedian’s blood is flowing. Fans who have fallen for her eccentric but lovable charms have been cheering her on with cries of ‘is life without Sana worth living’ [t/n: wordplay with her name] since before debut. Her outgoing personality and Korean fluent enough to get her on Abnormal Summit [t/n: a variety program where people from different countries discuss things in Korean] are what strike people the most when they first meet her. “There’s a variety program in Japan called Karaoke Competition that my grandma took care to watch every week. My grandma always said, ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if Sana was on there,’ and because I was young then also I would easily reply, ‘I think so too.’ I liked being in front of people. When Sixteen started, I realized standing on the stage I was supposed to wasn’t easy, and that I needed to know fear too. I made spring rolls for producer JYP in Sixteen’s first mission. I’d prepared a cooking show to show him how much my Korean improved. Because of that people think my specialty is cooking, but honestly I like eating more than making food.”
After lunch, we stopped by the local Filipino market to pick up some provisions. The boy and his pal Quinn wanted to see what the butcher had to offer. They were curious about the various and sundry bits and pieces of meat that they don’t ordinarily see at Whole Foods.
The boy told Quinn, “These things look strange, but they might taste good, you never know until you try.” And Quinn said, “Yeah, sometimes strange things taste good.” And the boy said, “Yeah.”