Skip to main content

Korea Club members stay after hours for social song-singing

A large group of members of the Korean Club standing in a classroom in front of a white screen with a projected image of a song from YouTube on it. They are all wearing masks.
Korean Club members enjoy karaoke together.

Ten minutes before karaoke night with Korea Club was scheduled to end, there were more than seven students’ names on the waitlist to sing, causing the event to continue for more than hour longer than expected.

The group of about 30 students gathered in the Heber J. Grant Building and sang various genres ranging from pop, Disney, country, ballads and K-pop on March 12.

The club members and attendees used pre-recorded backing tracks and subtitles from YouTube displayed through a projector for each song. Students requested songs by texting it on their phones and waiting for their turn. Some sang individually and some performed as a duet or trio to enjoy their stage time.

Siwoo Park, a sophomore majoring in vocal performance who serves as a culture leader for Korea Club and is the organizer of the event, said, “I could see how excited [the students] were through [their] eyes.” She said her team prepared this event because they thought anyone could come and participate in karaoke.

Taylor McKendrick, a freshman majoring in computer science from California, said the event was his second time doing karaoke. He shared he liked the energy from multiple people singing together, which brought a “bigger vibe” than his first experience. He said he “100 percent” agrees karaoke increases unity that comes from “making noise on the stage” with others.

Euijin Beck is a senior majoring in social work from Incheon, which is in South Korea near the international airport. He shared what he remembers the most from the event was when three domestic students, including McKendrick, sang “Under the Sea” together on the stage. He explained everyone loved it.

McKendrick said he thought it was a good opportunity to get to know different songs he had never heard before. He shared he was able to ask about the songs he didn’t know at the event. He added it would be great to have more people come and share songs from various cultures with other students.

Park explained in Korean, karaoke is called “no-rae bang.” She said students in Korea like to go to karaoke after school and stay there for at least an hour.

She shared she and her friends always spent time singing at no-re bang whenever they met to hang out. She added karaoke provides a good opportunity to get to know each other through singing.

Beck added, “Karaoke is a huge part of Korean culture,” and said he does karaoke once or twice a month. He even sometimes goes by himself, he said. Many of his friends enjoy karaoke to destress and have a fun time, he added.

For the event, two microphones, to make duet singing possible, were on stage. A speaker and Korean snacks were also found at the event. Park recommended preparing for karaoke by reserving a big room with a computer and a projector.

She added Korea Club is planning additional activities and hopes everyone comes to get a taste of Korean culture in the Spring 2022 Semester.