Smiti Iyer and Tanishka Gupta, New Delhi
The All-India K-Pop Contest, organized by the Korean Cultural Centre India, has been a prominent event for the past 13 years. Even amidst the challenging times prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the unwavering passion for K-Pop transcended all obstacles, proving that nothing can stop the influence of this global phenomenon. The K-Pop India Contest has become a symbol of resilience and determination, showcasing how the youth and people of all age groups are vastly influenced by the captivating charm of K-Pop. It serves as a platform for aspiring artists to display their talents and connect with like-minded enthusiasts who share a common love for Korean pop culture.
Moving the contest online during the pandemic has demonstrated the adaptability and creativity of both the organizers and participants in embracing the virtual world. However, the return of the contest as an offline festival event this year brought back the much-needed sense of community and enthusiasm.
The Delhi Regional Round of the K-Pop India Contest was held in person at the Aiwan-e-Ghalib Auditorium on June 13, 2023, sponsored by LG and organized by KCIFC and KCCI. The event showcased the best talents from the region in both vocal and dance categories. The opening ceremony consisted of a fusion of Indian classical and Korean Pop performed by Smiti Iyer, a Bharatnatyam Dancer, that kicked off at 4.45 pm, followed by the performances of four renowned judges- Ms. Rachna Bhagat, Ms. Unnati Singh Bilwal, Ms. Jincy Jacob, and Mr. Ashish Dhankhar, who evaluated the performances of the participants and provided their expert opinions.
The event remarked a splendid number of 27 participants, including 14 contestants in the vocal category and 13 in the dance category. Out of a staggering 11,071 applicants, these participants have triumphed and made it to the highly anticipated regional competition that led to an evening of entertainment and celebration.
The event ended with a closing performance of MIXDUP, performing the BTS Mashup, marking the 10th Debut Anniversary of the popular K-Pop band. Amidst the thrilling atmosphere of the event, an unexpected burst of energy and excitement filled the air when a spontaneous random dance play and flash mob took place. Participants and spectators alike couldn’t resist joining the impromptu dance-off, creating an unforgettable moment of unity and celebration.
Lastly, the spirited choreography and infectious music brought everyone together. It was a delightful spectacle that further added to the vibrancy and sheer dynamism of the event, leaving an indelible mark on all who were fortunate enough to witness it.
Prerna Tiwari, the founder of KCIFC and Hallyuism India, said after conducting the event successfully, “As we celebrate 50 years of Friendship between Korea and India, we were very excited about this event. We feel honoured that KCCI has given us this responsibility. Until 2019, everything used to be held at KCCI, where our team acted as volunteers, while from 2020 to 2022 the contest was held online.
It’s for the first time we are doing it outside with the support of KCCI, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea and LG. The preparations had gone well, and we are thankful to every person outside our team who has helped us.
We feel very proud that we have given a platform for fans to showcase their talent for hosting and organising the event. We know they will perform well and learn something new, which will help them develop their organizational skills. For all the participants, we know they are going to perform well which will help them in building their confidence and presentation skills. Lastly, I would like to thank Hallyuism India, our media partner for the successful promotion of the event.”