[INTERVIEW] Secret's Jieun(1): A Model student's dreams of becoming a performer

Song Jieun made herself known as a talented vocalist back in December of 2009 through Hwanhee's solo album, “Yesterday”, which he produced himself. With these skills and her innocent charms, she has captured the hearts of many male fans.

She has made her name in the entertainment industry through “Shy Boy”, but Jieun modestly insisted that she was still a rookie. At first she hesitated, not knowing where to start, but soon began to tell her story.

“Both of my parents were busy working so I grew up with my aunt(mom's side) until the IMF crisis had passed. So I always tell people that I have two mothers. Ever since I was seven, staying home alone was a daily thing for me.”

Because she was an only child, it was inevitable that Jieun's parents had high expectations of her. Every parent wants the best for their child, but Jieun's expectations were especially large.

“I think my parents were ambitious people. They invested all they had into my education. There was one point where I actually went to 8 different private schools (T/N: In Korea, many kids go to private after school institutions focusing on various subjects). I took classes in violin, piano, extra math, and all kinds of other subjects.”

Naturally, Jieun's dreams leaned towards things like becoming a nurse or a stewardess. She never once thought of becoming an entertainer.

“Back then, both my parents and I never even thought about me pursuing anything in the entertainment industry. In grade school I was a model student and class president for 6 years.(laughs) All of my grade school friends were shocked when they found out that I had debuted as a singer. Whenever I had to sing or dance, I was so shy and reluctant stand in front of an audience.”

Her school record was outstanding. Aside from getting a C in physical education, she had outstanding marks for every other subject, even ranking first in the class during middle school.

“Once during middle school, I thought about my career options. Considering my love for singing, I watched Fin.K.L and SES sunbaes on TV and thought that living like that wouldn't be bad at all. But I never had any thoughts about trying to actually become like them.”

However, in a 9th grade career survey, Jieun ended up choosing singing. She could no longer hide her true passion and the stress she was feeling due to her studies.

“My friends found time to play in between their studies, but I never got to play once. Thinking of that made me a bit rebellious. I wanted to show my parents what I wanted to do. I gave up my musical dreams in 7th grade but I suddenly got passionate about it. I guess you could say that the inner musician in me came out?(laughs)”

Jieun did not hide her passions. Pushing aside her parents' disapproval, Jieun took up a part time job to attend a music school(T/N: not an actual music school, but a private after school program).

“I figured that, for me to do well, I had to attend a music school and learn everything I needed to learn. I lied to my parents, telling them I was going to a math program, and went to work in a nearby convenience store instead. Normally students can't have part time jobs, but I think it was possible because it was a local store.(laughs) I earned 700,000 won a month and paid 400,000 won for tuition.

No one knew that what started out as a teen's passion and rebellious streak would end up changing Jieun's life.

Part 2 coming soon.

Source: Asia E (1)
Credits: dunlop09 @ secretfour