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K-Pop Gets An Indian Touch With A New Band Member, Odisha’s Shreya Lenka

The 18-year-old artist from Odisha has been selected as the fifth member of the popular South Korean girl band ‘Blackswan’.

Anannya Chatterjee

Korean pop music fans, attention please! For the first time ever, an Indian artist has been chosen to be a member of a Korean pop band. Shreya Lenka, who also goes by the name Sriya, an 18-year-old artist from Odisha has been selected as the fifth member of the popular South Korean girl band Blackswan. She will be joining the other band members Youngheun, Fatou, Judy and Leia along with a Brazilian girl named Gabriela Dalcin. Both Lenka and Dalcin were selected through a global audition organised by Blackswan's label DR Music last year.

Blackswan’s music label, DR Music took to Instagram and made an official announcement that read, “Sriya and Gabi were finally selected as members of Blackswan after participating in the global audition program for the last 6 months. With their debut, we will be back with the new Blackswan.” They were chosen through a programme which aims to discover and train trainees to become stars. The caption read, “Sriya and Gabi are the first generation of Cygnus, which will be introduced soon. Thank you for your interest and support. And the Cygnus project will continue in the future.”

Talking about Shreya becoming the first K-Pop artist from India, her father Avinash Lenka told Kalinga TV, “Though I had faith in her hard work, I never expected that Shreya would make it. Despite all my misgivings about her future, I encouraged her to follow her passion for dancing as she always wanted to be a dancer and participated in several dance competitions.”

Getting synonymous with the Korean language, dance and vocals was a major part of Lenka’s training session. On being asked about Lenka and Dalcin’s performance during the audition, D R Music Entertainment Korea director Philip YJ Yoon told PTI, “They showed very positive energy when sticking together and achieving each of the assignments they needed to overcome. It was one of the reasons we decided not to separate them. The duo will now start preparing for their new album and stage performances.”

Shreya Lenka, the rising K-Pop star from India

Shreya is originally from Rourkela and is a trained Hindustani classical, contemporary modern and Odissi dancer. During an interaction with Talk Talk Korea, the newest Blackswan member shared that she was introduced to the world of K-pop by a friend some years ago, and there’s been no looking back since. Their unique choreography, singing style, and songs by the BTS, Stray Kids and The Boyzare her absolute favourites. In 2020, during the pandemic she auditioned for the K-Pop record labels online and made her way into the world of K-Pop. 

The obsession with K-Pop is real

Though the rage for all things Korean picked up mainly over the last two years of pandemic, the fixation over K-pop music isn’t recent. They have garnered a massive fan base over the decade, especially in India. BTS, Blackpink, Bigbang, and Seventeen are just to name a few. With Shreya living her ultimate dream of being a part of the K-Pop world of music, it’s only going to get better and inspire other aspiring singers to dream big and go international. 

Photo: Instagram/DRmusic
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