Named the “Hallyu Wave” (Korean Wave), Korea’s popular culture has slowly and steadily gained fame and recognition on a global scale over the last decade. It’s popularity has also reached us in Nicaragua.
There have been two K-pop festivals in the country in 2019. One was the Galerías K-pop Festival, which took place in the Galerías Santo Domingo shopping mall on April 28th. Various activities were carried out, such as dance cover competitions, fan performances, and selling K-pop bands’ merchandise. The other was the K-pop World Festival 2019, which took place July 7th at the Catholic University Redemptoris Mater (UNICA). This one was organized by the Korean Embassy and an estimated 900 people attended the event. It was a competition between 11 pre-selected groups, and the winner would get the opportunity to represent Nicaragua at the K-pop World Festival in Changwon, Korea that will take place October 11th.
The Korean Wave does not end there. There have been increasing amounts of people wearing K-pop merchandise in public places in Nicaragua, such as the mall. There are also online stores selling K-pop goods that deliver them to your house.
So how did it start?
In 1996, the Korean boy band H.O.T (High-five of Teenagers) became popular in China. Other Korean groups followed, including S.E.S, SechsKies, Shinhwa, and solo singer BoA. Since 2010, Korean fame has reached overseas, to the Western world.
The tremendous success of PSY’s “Gangnam Style” paved the way for other Korean bands to succeed abroad, like the Bangtan Boys, better known as BTS. Currently, they are one of the most famous Kpop groups worldwide; they have performed at the American Music Awards (AMA) and Billboard Music Awards (BBMA). Also, they have become a role model for the youth by collaborating with UNICEF Korea on the “Love Myself” campaign and delivering a speech at the launch of the new United Nations (U.N) campaign, Generation Unlimited.
Meanwhile, there are other Korean groups who have also largely succeeded internationally, like BlackPink, Twice, EXO, NCT, and Red Velvet.
However, the Hallyu Wave is not only restricted to music, but to Korean culture in general. This includes the film industry (K-dramas and movies), gastronomy, and traditions. The wave has been able to expand so much due to increased access to the internet and streaming services, such as YouTube and Netflix.
Though the Korean Wave started small , it has also grown to be a worldwide phenomenon, and Nicaragua has not been an exception to being exposed to this sensation.
Categories: World News