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12 September 2010

Onew “I‘m firing up the spirit of a rocker”

Idol singers advancing onto the performance stage is no longer a new issue. Initially, there was criticism that they were riding not on their talent but on their vibrant popularity, as well as applause for the fresh passion and energy they brought upon the stage. Currently, however, one must acknowledge the image of these singers as they gain potential as actors on their own with their solid foundation and sense of concentration which are stronger than anyone’s, as well as their ability to grip the stage.

For the person who is raising the expectations on stage, there is Onew. As group SHINee’s leader, when they were shouting out “Nuna Is So Pretty” in 2008 we only saw him as a shining guy who caught the hearts of women, but in 2010 he became the center of an indescribable charm through “Lucifer.” As a newcomer to variety and as a singer whose foundation is talent with unwavering explosive vocal ability proven through ‘MR Removal,’ Onew is in the midst of carving his way under the potential of refusing limitations.

He, who underwent a musical pledge more believable than anyone’s in the musical “The Brothers Were Brave,” is planning to transform into a rocker in “Rock of Ages” during this autumn, which will be busier for him than for anyone.

Second Musical “Rock of Ages”

PD I heard that you rehearsed in the morning and then came to the broadcasting station.
Today we rehearsed for about five hours. Truthfully, I’ve hardly been able to practice at all. For the last 2 weeks of “The Brothers Were Brave” I went on fixed, this time I’m not able to do that. (sighs then gathers a shout) I have to enjoy the current situation.

PD This spring you were in your debut musical “The Brothers Were Brave.” The musical stage, how was it?
After it ended I wanted to do it more. Because I liked it. I also liked creating teamwork with the actors. I liked it even more because it was fun to give and take something together with the audience for 2 hours. I liked it even more because it was fun to take lead for 2 hours, giving and taking something together with the audience. Because my character in “The Brothers Were Brave” was particularly ill-tempered, I’ve changed a lot, to be ill-tempered (laughter). (At this point f(x)’s Luna who was sitting down spoke up, “No, he’s soft and smooth.”)

PD Your second musical stage came sooner than expected so I was surprised. With “Rock of Ages” it’s already two musical productions just this year.
I don’t know if there were many performance love calls (laughter), but I said that while there is an opportunity, I’ll do it.

PD Because your character ‘Drew’ is someone who aspires to be a rocker, I thought that perhaps there would be elements similar to your own experience.
He has countless dreams and overflows with passion. He works very hard but is slightly foolish, and also a bit silly. (laughter) After singing very well he shakes his leg three times, he has those types of qualities. Because the genre of rock itself overflows with energy and I have to show something more active in the production, I think that I have to find all the more joy in those sections. Though he’s a friend who dreams of being a rocker he’s almost half a rocker, a nameless rocker. Because I have to act in that situation I think that I’m coming to reflect more on that part. I’m firing up the soul of a rocker. (laughter)

PD It’s a jukebox musical that gathers rock music from the 70s and 80s. Wasn’t the generation, as well as the genre, foreign to you?
In high school one listens to rock music a lot. But because I haven’t listened to this type of music a lot it was slightly unfamiliar. But as I listened it was exciting, and I think that there’s a lot to cover. The key is high as well (laughter), and there’s a very difficult aspect, a lot of points I have to learn. So there is much to do.

PD Looking at the music, singers, musicians you chose as the ones you personally like, such as Stevie Wonder and Eric Bennet, it appears that a lot gravitates towards R&B. The song “Your Name” which you wrote for your 2nd album is also sweet and touching. It seems that the music from “Rock of Ages” would have been strange to you.
I really wanted to go to Stevie Wonder’s concert! I had a schedule to attend to. I really almost cried. Because ultimately I mainly sing those kinds of songs and I don’t often come in contact with rock music there are difficult points. Because it’s something I haven’t tried yet. As I sang the songs from this production, I was able to try doing many things I never did before. If it’s shouting, then it can be done like this or it can be done like that. As I’ve been thinking about those things a lot, for nearly 3 weeks the condition of my throat has nearly been shot. My throat easily worsens. (laughter)

PD You’ve taken on the role of Drew together with Ahn Jaewook and Jay. It seems that individual versions of ‘Drew’ with personal touches will be drawn out?
We call them AhnDrew, DukDrew, Ondrew. (laughter) What really surprised me when I met Ahn Jaewook sunbaenim was that even during a run-through while reading the script he was able to convey Drew, just like that, which I was really jealous of. I’m trying to bring a lot in terms of my acting. He’s done a countless number of dramas, theatrical work, and musicals. His effortlessness was overflowing. When we first met he told me “I don’t know about singing, but when it comes to acting I think I’ll be able to do better than you, I’ll help you a lot so follow me, when it comes to singing if you have good qualities tell me,” and said we should help each other. I think the image of having that ease is very good.

In comparison to that I’m drifting and wandering. (laughter) I’m excitable (Does that mean you have a lot of energy?) If you speak positively of it then yes, if not then it means I’m easily distracted? (laughter)

With Jay hyung we shared the same role in "The Brothers Were Brave” so we weren’t able to match our chemistry, but during rehearsals we talk to each other about what this is like, what that is like, how the song gives a delightful feel if you sing it a certain way, and as we did that I think we became really close.

The feel of your heart pounding thump thump

PD Did you originally have thoughts of doing musicals? Or was it an opportunity by chance?
It was a bit of the latter too. But since I was younger when I saw musical actors I thought ‘Wow, they’re so impressive, some day I want to try it once,’ and as I did “The Brother Were Brave” I gained more courage.

I also really liked performance, especially opera, vocal music. As a student in elementary and middle school you learn about composers like Bach and listen to their music in school. Then when I went home I would search for it and listen to it again. It wasn’t a lot, but I think that’s what I did.

PD So that’s why you want to try opera as well.
Yes, opera, popera, I really think they have many charms.

PD Is it the charm of genre’s music style?
The energy of the production! I think that the energy it conveys as a production is very different. With something like opera, should I say that it stabs at your heart? You know the feeling you can only feel in the theater, right? The one that really hits your heart. It was that sort of feeling.

I don’t cry often when I watch movies. But, was it in my 2nd year of high school? The movie ‘August Rush’ is about 2 hours and 30 minutes long, and as I watched that movie I cried for 2 hours. The music, how they found it piece by piece, was so impressive that tears just flowed.

PD SHINee’s 2nd album has been released so you’re in the middle of promotions, with MCing a variety program as well as the musical. Will this signify that the meaning of contemporary group SHINee will reveal the various images of the members that can be shown now?
The people who have watched us from our debut up until now are telling us that we have become manly lately, though it wasn’t because younger guys were the trend at first but because that was what our appearance was, and so the qualities we could show we showed through music, and nowadays our look has a bit more depth than it did back then (laughter). Slightly more (laughter) than back then.

Later on whether I have become a radio DJ or an actor. In Taemin-gun’s case he has acted. I think it’s good that we each do individual activities that are within our capabilities when we are in circumstances that allow us to.

Always being one step ahead to lead the modern trends. From the beginning we had thoughts that it would be good to become this type of team. We said that we should work hard so that when people say contemporary band they think of SHINee. I feel happy because it seems that little by little it’s happening.

PD Currently in Cambodia a copy group of SHINee has even surfaced.
Even “Ring Ding Dong” is the same. I was very surprised.

PD It must mean that during the 3 years after your debut, you have become a group and a person who receives that much interest.
When I see our image from when we first debuted, my fingers and toes curl up. (laughter) Physically big with big heads. I think that we’ve become much faster at absorbing things, and I think that the best transformation and positive point is that there are so many more things that we can do. I think it’s very good that since we’ve shown this type of image and that type of image people now think, ah, this kid must be able to do this as well.

I Can Do It, So I Work Even Harder

PD Standing on stage, the things you want to do, and the things you can do, between those which are you closest to?
Everyone dreams at least once of wanting to become a singer, of wanting to try and do something. I think that’s what it was like for me too. And there was also the thought of ‘I can do it.’ Before, I used to have a lot of unnecessary confidence. (laughter) Nowadays I have a lot of schedules but I don’t think ‘ah, I can’t do this,’ I think ‘I’m doing this because I can.’

PD What is it that you want to do in the coming future?
I want to try opera, acting, DJing. I have much greed. I have so much it's borderline strange. What I want to do, I do it. No matter which direction it goes in. If I form a goal, I do it no matter what.

PD So for certain, coming in 2nd in your school during your 3rd year in high school isn’t something just anyone can do. (laughter)
I slept, I did. (laughter) (It was always the friends who do well in school who would do that, coming to school on Monday saying that they watched a movie during the weekend. (laughter)) I slept during rest periods. (laughter) But that really isn’t incorrect. I forgot it all now so I’m not sure, but back then I really worked hard.

PD It’s almost the opening show. You’re about to stand on the stage for the first performance, please say something to the people who will be in the audience.
At the end of the 1st half there’s a scene where Sherry and Drew meet and sing. In that part all the other actors come out and sing together, I think it’s a portion you can rea~lly identify with and can enjoy together. And although I don’t appear in it, in the beginning of the 2nd half the ensemble comes out and performs, it’s a scene that gives out a lot of noise and cheers, a lot of energy. You’ll really crack up during that scene. Please don’t miss it.

Writing: Reporter Hwang Seonah (Magazine PlayDB suna1@interpark.com)
Photos: Ki Joonseo (www.choonstudio.com)

Source: PlayDB
Original article: here
English translation: live laugh love @ soompi

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