It’s graduation season in Korea, and 2 Korean pop stars, Lee Jung-hyun and Ivy have officially graduated from their respective universities for the past 2 days.

Lee graduated from Chung-Ang University (중앙대학교; literally Central University) after 9 years of studies, while Ivy from Dongduk Women’s University after 7 years.

Lee is a veteran singer and actress; she was already quite famous when she enrolled into CAU in 1999. Ivy is relatively new but was arguably the most outstanding Korean female pop star in 2007.

Korean pop star Ivy graduated from university Korean pop star Ivy graduated from university
Ivy’s graduation… shiny shoes and expensive bag

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Japanese pop diva Kumi Koda has found herself in trouble after making a careless remark on a radio show earlier this week.

The comment came on Tuesday night (Jan 29) while Koda was hosting “All Night Nippon”; the topic of her manager’s marriage came up, and Koda was asked about when her manager was planning to have children…

She made a seemingly light-hearted reply that “when women turn 35, their amniotic fluid goes rotten, so I’d like them to have a child by 35.”

The inaccurate statement sparked a lot of criticism among listeners, particularly on the internet. Koda has issued a public apology on Friday through the websites of Nippon Broadcasting System and Avex, but the damage had already been done.

Cosmetics firm KOSE has halted online advertisements for its Visee brand (feat. Koda) and promotional events for her new album “Kingdom” have all been canceled. [Tokyograph]

Amniotic fluid is the liquid surrounding and cushioning a growing fetus during pregnancy.

Korean stars and buddies Haha and MC Mong have open an online store, Hahamong, selling their own designs of different fashion items. [Hat tip to Krnloop]

Korean artist Haha Korean singer MC Mong
Multi-talent artist Haha (left) and hip-hop star MC Mong

Korean pop star and famous music producer Park Jin-young is set to wow the US audiences with The JYP Tour, featuring his protégés Wondergirls, J-Lim, Min and G-Soul.

The JYP Tour, featuring Wondergirls, J-Lim, Min and G-Soul

The tour will kick start on Feb 9 at the Wamu Theater at New York’s Madison Square Garden, followed by Los Angeles’s Wiltern Theater on Mar 8. There are also plans for concerts at Atlanta and San Francisco, which are pending on announcement.

Besides the concerts, JYP will also hold auditions in NYC (Mar 9) and LA (Mar 15) to look for fresh talents to join his agency; more audition details from K-popped.

South Korean veteran singer Na Hoon-a has shocked a live national TV audience on Friday (Jan 25) by threatening to drop his trousers to prove that he had not been castrated by a Japanese gangster.

The 60-year-old crooner was at a news conference to deny rumour that his private part was cut off by a Yakuza (Japanese gangster), whom the media reported to be unhappy with Hoon-a for having a relationship with his mistress.

Korean singer Na Hoon-a drop pants to deny rumours
Na Hoon-a ‘dropping his trousers’ (Image courtesy of Chosun)

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SG Wannabe’s Chae Dong-ha is leaving the popular Korean R&B group soon. SG Wannabe’s agency, Mnet Media, has revealed that Chae will not be renewing his contract when it expires in May 2008.

Korean pop group SG Wannabe
SG Wannabe (L-R)… Kim Jin-ho, Chae Dong-ha and Kim Yong-jun (Image courtesy of Sina)

It has been a known fact that Chae is interested in branching out his career into acting and stage performances, but Mnet wanted SG Wannabe to focus in singing instead… Chae has no choice but to leave the group to pursue his own interest.

Chae’s decision has received blessings from his other group members, Kim Yong-jun and Kim Jin-ho. It’s not the end of SG Wannabe though, as Mnet has announced that they will find a replacement for Chae instead of disbanding the group.

SG Wannabe has been a hit group in Korea since making their debut in 2004. The trio’s 4th and latest album “The Sentimental Chord” is Korea’s best selling album of the year 2007.

SG Wannabe is expected to release their 5th album before Chae leaves the group.

Flight attendants in Thailand are protesting against a soap opera, “War of Angels” (“Songkram Nang Fah”), which is said to be demeaning their profession.

The new soap opera focuses on the sexual scandal of a handsome married pilot, and a group of jealous air hostesses fighting for his love. The stewardesses can be seen cat fighting while on duty and wearing their uniforms (video below).

The trade union representing air crew has filed a complaint on Tuesday (Jan 22) to the culture ministry and the TV station that broadcasts the show to take it off the air.

The producers of the soap have apologised for the controversies caused and promised to tone it down with longer skirts and to stop having cat fights in uniforms; but have ruled out of cancelling the show.

Trailer of Songkhram Nang Fah (Hat tip to Asianpopcorn)

Sg Wannabe The Sentimental Chord

The Recording Industry Association of Korea (MIAK) has announced that SG Wannabe tops Korea’s best selling album chart of 2007.

SG Wannabe’s “The Sentimental Chord” sold 190,998 copies, followed by Super Junior’s “Don’t Don” (164,058) and Epik High’s “Remapping the Human Soul” (120,301).

With South Korea’s 49 million populations, the sales figure is surprisingly low for a best selling album.

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