SM Entertainment just introduced its new girl group. The new four-band girl group is named aespa and each singer will have their own avatar counterpart in the virtual world.
The members of aespa are Karina, Winter, NingNing and Aeri. The name aespa is an amalgamation of the words “avatar,” “experience,” and “aspect,” with the meaning of “being able to experience a new world through another avatar of yourself.” It’s also a hint to show that the group has many different sides and layers to them.
SM Entertainment founder and chief producer Lee Soo Man explained the concept of aespa. He explained that the artist members of aespa exist in the real world while their avatars exist in the virtual world. One day, their avatars meet their real world counterpart.
Both counterparts will interact with each other through the digital world as shown in the recent introductory video titled MY, KARINA (video above).
According to Soompi, Karina is 20 years old and hails from South Korea. She possesses various skills including vocals, rap and dance.
Karina, also known as Yoo Ji Min, found herself in hot waters after netizens revealed that she has once insulted various idols such as EXO, NCT and BTS.
As such, some fans have asked that she not be allowed to debut with aespa.
However, SM Entertainment has released a statement to refute these allegations and claimed the rumours are just fabrications.
Group member Winter is only 19 years old and also hails from South Korea.
She’s said to possess outstanding vocal and dance skills.
NingNing’s debut with aespa has met with some criticism from South Korean Kpop fans. This is because she comes from Harbin, China and some of these fans do not want a Chinese idol.
Fortunately, member Aeri did not meet as much push back. She’s speculated to be Korean-Japanese and has amazing vocal and rapping skills.
Aside from the controversies, this new avatar music group reminds many of K/DA, a Kpop girl group which performed an augmented reality live performance at the 2018 League of Legends World Championship, as shown in the video below.
K/DA was developed by Riot Games, the company behind League of Legends.