Let’s Find Out More about the South Korean Survival Program that Creates Popular and Talented Groups
Produce 101 is a reality television talent competition franchise created by South Korean entertainment conglomerate CJ E&M, based around the formation of a K-Pop girl group or a boy band. The format is noted for having no panel of judges, employing audience participation to make decisions, and for starting with a very large number of competitors, 101, narrowing that number down to a final 11. The franchise began in 2016 and has since expanded to China and Japan. The franchise has attracted a wide following in Asia. More than 10 million people cast their votes during the finale of Season 2 in 2017, equivalent to a fifth of South Korea’s population. In 2018, the eight episodes of Produce 101 China attracted more than 4.3 billion views on Tencent Video.
Some popular groups that have been formed from this program are; I.O.I in 2016, Wanna One in 2017, IZ*ONE in 2018, and the latest is X1 in 2019 and will soon debut. After their respective groups have disbanded because their contracts ended, several members from season 1 and season 2 groups, which are I.O.I and Wanna One, decided to continue their respective careers. There are some who have continued by pursuing a solo career, others have made a new debut as members of another group formed by their agency and they have become a huge success at that.
In this article, Byeol Korea will introduce you with the successful trainees from Mnet’s Produce 101 series. So, keep reading!
Solo Artist Samuel Kim
Samuel Kim Arredondo was born on January 17th, 2002, in Los Angeles, California, United States. He is better known by his stage name Samuel (formerly known as Punch). He is an American-born South Korean singer who was a part of the short-lived hip-hop duo 1Punch in 2015.
In April 2017, Samuel participated in the second season of the popular survival show Produce 101 under his own name, representing Brave Entertainment. During the first elimination, he was ranked 2nd, but did not make the final cut for the 11-member team, finally ranking 18th overall. The result was met with surprise from many viewers, who had expected Samuel to become part of the line-up of Wanna One. Instead, Samuel debuted as a solo artist on August 2nd. His debut mini-album, Sixteen, was released on August 2nd, with the title track “Sixteen” featuring rapper Changmo. Samuel’s first full-length album, Eye Candy, was released on November 16th, 2017, with a total of ten tracks including the lead single “Candy.” In December 2017, it was announced that Samuel had signed a contract with Pony Canyon for his Japanese promotions.
Samuel officially debuted in Japan on February 7th, 2018, with his first Japanese single, “Sixteen” (Japanese Ver.). The music video of “Sixteen (Japanese Ver.)” was released on January 18th. In March 2018, Samuel released his second mini-album, One, with the title track “One” featuring BtoB member Jung Il-hoon. In April 2018, Samuel released his second Japanese single, “Candy (Japanese Ver.),” on May 16th. The music video of the track was released on May 2nd. On May 30th, 2018, Samuel released his repackaged album, Teenager, featuring Lee Ro-han, who was a runner-up in MNet’s School Rapper Season 2.
Samuel’s Albums and Soundtracks
- Eye Candy (2017)
- Sixteen (2017)
- Say you love me (좋아한다 말해) feat Kriesha Chu (2017) – Pink Pink OST
- Thousand Times (2018) – Cross OST
- Time to Shine with Bigstar Feeldog (2018) – Sweet Revenge 2 OST
- One (2018)
- One (Repackaged) (2018)
Solo Artist Chung-ha
Kim Chung-ha was born on February 9th, 1996, in Seoul, South Korea. She is better known by her stage name Chungha. She lived in Dallas, Texas, for eight years before returning to South Korea to become a singer.
From January 22nd to April 1st, Chungha represented MNH Entertainment on the reality girl group survival show Produce 101. She finished in fourth place and debuted on May 4thh, with the project girl group I.O.I with the mini-album Chrysalis. On June 10th, YMC Entertainment revealed Chungha as one of the seven members of the group’s subunit, slated to promote their second single, “Whatta Man,” during the summer of 2016. It was revealed that three teams were contacted to make the choreography for the single, but hers was chosen because it was deemed to be the highest quality.
Chungha released her second extended play Offset on January 17th, 2018. The EP contains five tracks including the title track “Roller Coaster.” On June 26th, MNH Entertainment confirmed that she would be having a comeback on July 18th with her third mini-album titled Blooming Blue, with “Love U” serving as the lead single. Chungha became the ambassador for the Seoul International Architecture Film Festival in October of the same year. It was announced on August 8th that she would join the project group consisting of Red Velvet’s Seulgi, (G)I-dle’s Soyeon, and GFriend’s SinB called Station Young for SM Entertainment’s project album SM Station X 0. They released their single “Wow Thing” on September 28th. Chungha collaborated with Super Junior’s Yesung for the song, “Whatcha Doin,” with the music video released on December 16th.
On January 2nd, 2019, she released her single album, Gotta Go. On January 9th, Chungha won her first-ever music program trophy on the MBC Music’s Show Champion. She was featured in VIXX’s member Ravi’s new single, “Live,” which was released on February 18th, 2019. Chungha released her fourth EP Flourishing on June 24th, 2019, alongside the music video of the lead single, “Snapping.” “Snapping” was placed first on Show Champion on July 3rd, 2019. Chungha is set to return to I.O.I in October 2019, managed by Swing Entertainment.
Chungha’s Albums and Soundtracks
- Hands on Me (2017)
- Offset (2018)
- Blooming Blue (2018)
- Flourishing (2019)
- Snow in This Year (with Heo Jung-eun and HALO’s Ooon) (2016) – My Fair Lady (오 마이 금비) OST Part 6
- Pit-a-Pat (두근두근) (2017) – Strong Girl Bong-soon (힘쎈여자 도봉순) OST Part 4
- How About You (2018) – Luv Pub (연애포차) OST Part 3
- Remember (with The Call artists) (2018) – The Call (더 콜) OST
- It’s you (너였나 봐) (2018) – Where Stars Land (여우각시별) OST Part 1
- Sunshine (2018) – AURA KINGDOM S (아우라킹덤S) OST
Yu Yeon-jung was born on August 3rd, 1999, in Gwangmyung, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea. She is better known as Yeonjung. She is a former member of I.O.I. and is the main vocalist, center, and maknae of the South Korean-Chinese girl group Cosmic Girls. She joined Cosmic Girls as the 13th member in July 2016.
In 2015, she appeared on the Mnet survival show Produce 101 representing Starship Entertainment where she ranked 11th, securing herself a place as a member of the temporary group I.O.I as of May 2016.
In July 2016, it was revealed that she would be joining the group Cosmic Girls, as well as being a member of its Natural Unit and representing the zodiac sign Ophiuchus. She debuted in the group as the main vocalist on August 17th, 2016, with the release of the group’s second mini-album The Secret.
- I Will Be On Your Side with Yu Seung-woo (내가 니편이 되어줄게) (2016)
- #Drive” (#드라이브) (DinDin featuring Yeonjung) – (2017)
- Marry You ( with Maktub) – (2017)
- Fire & Ice (with Dawon) (2016) – The Snow Queen 3: Fire and Ice OST
- You’re Dazzling (눈부신 그대) (2017) – Queen for Seven Days OST
- oy” (서툰 고백) with Brother Su (2017) – Love Playlist OST
- Meloholic (멜로홀릭) (2017) – Meloholic OST
- Your Name Is… (너의 이름을…) (2018) – The Undateables OST
- Stay With You(2018) – Where the Stars Land OST
Solo Artist Jeong Se-woon
Jeong Se-woon was born on May 31st, 1997, in Masan, South Gyeongsang, South Korea. He is a South Korean singer and songwriter signed under Starship Entertainment.
In 2017, he represented Starship Entertainment in Produce 101 Season 2 alongside fellow trainee Lee Gwang-hyun. He became part of the Top 20 but was eliminated during the finale, after ranking 12th overall with 769,859 votes. After the show, on August 1st, it was reported that he had started preparing for his solo debut. Se-woon debuted as a solo artist on August 31st, with his first EP titled Ever, which peaked at number two on the Gaon Chart after selling 23,438 copies within its first week. The album has two versions: “+Glow” and “+Green”. Both versions contain six songs, including his original compositions “Miracle” and “Never Mind” (Korean: 오해는 마, Read: Ohaeneun Ma), as well as the title track “Just U.”
Jeong Se-woon’s Albums and Soundtracks
- Part.1 Ever (2017)
- Part. 2 After (2018)
- Another (2018)
- Plus Minus Zero (2019)
- There’s Something (뭔가 있어) (2018) – Wok of Love OST
- It’s You (2018) – What’s Wrong with Secretary KimOST
- Told You So (이봐 이봐 이봐) (2018) – Where Stars Land OST