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2PM Haru*Hana Magazine Vol. 2 (All Interviews)

Japan Debut
Special Interview

A preview before their debut!

They want to show people a manly and powerful performance

2PM is a boys’ group that boasts overwhelming popularity in Korea. With their powerful performances and overflowing wild charms, they leapt to the top of the Korean music scene right after their debut in September, 2008. In recognition of the group, the term “beastly idols” was also born in Korea. We have asked 2PM, the strongest and brightest group in K-POP, about their thoughts on their Japanese debut.

CHAN: We’re very grateful and fortunate to have this chance. Lots of Korean artistes are active in Japan, so we will do our best not to lose to our seniors.
WOO: I don’t want to forget the feelings we had before our debut. Of course I hope we’ll gain popularity in Japan, but for now, I’m referring to the challenge of how people will view our music.
KHUN: First, I want to learn Japan’s culture and language. After that, I will work hard to let everyone recognize 2PM and every one of our members.

The term “beastly idol” was born for 2PM. What meaning does that nickname hold for the group?

TAEC: It’s a phrase that came up for the first time as a way to describe us, so we’re grateful and very honoured. Originally, the word “beast” seems to be used in negative situations where, for example, a woman screams at a man, “Kya, you beast!” (laughs) But in our case, it’s used in a positive light, and we’re thankful that it helped to spread the name of 2PM, too!
WOO: I think this beastly idol image is one of the reasons why Japanese people are interested in us. So I want to show them a manly, passionate and powerful performance.

This summer, they held their first concert in Seoul and Busan. Extra concerts were also added, before they closed their performances with great success.

JUNSU: We didn’t have much time to prepare, but I think we managed to produce a good concert within that limited time. Many people came to our concert and had fun with us, so it went very well.
JUNHO: It was our first standalone concert and the first time the hall was filled with just our fans, so I was very happy. A lot of Japanese fans came to the concert, too. It strengthened my wish to hold a concert in Japan soon.
KHUN: I also learned that we had a lot of room for improvement. I’ve felt, once again, how truly difficult it is to produce a good concert. But more than that, I was happy to be able to become one with our fans.

Each of them gave ideas for their respective solo pieces, resulting in stage performances shining with individuality. The members told us some backstage stories from the concert.

TAEC: Chansung, you ripped off your clothes, didn’t you? (laughs)
CHAN: I had no idea what to do for my solo corner. The other members were going to sing, some were going to dance, and some were even going to perform with an instrument. So, while I was deciding what to do, I realized that no one was going to expose their body. (laughs) 2PM can’t get away from their manly image, after all. (laughs)
TAEC: So that was your intention. (laughs)
CHAN: I figured someone had to do it, so I sacrificed myself. (laughs)
JUNHO: For this concert, we showed a parody video of “Cinderella’s Sister” , didn’t we? Once we get better at speaking Japanese, it’d be great if we could take a parody video of a drama in Japanese, too.

The boys tried to speak in Japanese by using as many words as they knew in the interview. They appear to be furiously studying Japanese now, in preparation for their debut in Japan.

JUNSU: We can sort of pick up what people are saying in conversations, but speaking is still difficult. I’ve also tweeted in Japanese on Twitter, but I’m still not fluent at all, so I’m learning from a friend in Osaka.

All the members are currently using Twitter. While staying Taiwan, they put up a tweet of the members disappearing with only their clothes left behind, causing a sensation amongst fans.

TAEC: I shared a room with Junsu, but when I returned to the hotel, Junsu was missing with only his clothes left behind. I couldn’t find him no matter how hard I searched, so after I took a picture of his clothes, I called the other members. Then one by one, all of us started this game of taking off our clothes and disappearing somewhere. (laughs) So, it was Junsu who started it. At the time, Wooyoung was so sleepy, he didn’t join us, though. (laughs)

2PM’s closeness with each other is part of their charm. On December 8, you can see these boys with your own eyes at their first live event.

WOO: A lot of people will be meeting us for the first time, so instead of doing something special, we want to show them our natural state in order to let them know what 2PM is like.
KHUN: To everyone in Japan, we’ll see each other very soon! We’ll show you the efforts of our hard work, so please wait a little longer!

Special Cross Talk
All the 2PM members stand out with their individual personalities. We can see their relationships(?) and true nature in these special pair interviews!
JUNHO x JUNSU
We can instantly recognize our Japanese fans. (Junsu)

—Many international fans went to your first concert. Did you notice the presence of Japanese fans in the hall?
JUNHO: Of course! There were really a lot of Japanese fans at the concert.
JUNSU: Some people were holding cards with our names written in Japanese. Also, we can guess with one glance that a fan might be Japanese. We’re very happy that they came all the way to Korea just to watch this concert.
JUNHO: That’s also why we want to meet everyone in Japan as soon as possible.
JUNSU: We have fans who always give us letters and have been supporting us for a very long time. I want to perform for them soon!

—2PM is involved in many things besides your music activities, such as Junho-san’s appearance on “Let’s Go! Dream Team 2″.
JUNHO: I’ve always liked sports since I was a child. In the past, I wanted to be a sports athlete, and there weren’t many computer games at the time too, so I played soccer and went to the pool every Sunday. I was very restless. Lately I haven’t been exercising as much as I did before, so I’ve started to become less resilient to colds… if there’s a good place for exercising in Japan, I’d like to give it a try. (laughs)

—So, which member would you date if you were a girl?
JUNHO: I know all the members well, so I don’t really feel like dating any of them. You asked me to imagine if I were a girl, but I’m a boy right now, so I don’t want to put too much thought into this. (laughs)
JUNSU: Junsu, maybe… because he’s a good person. (laughs)
JUNHO: (in Japanese) Oh shut up. (laughs)
JUNSU: (in Japanese) Sorry. (laughs)

—Both of you enjoy songwriting and have great interest in music. Name a concert you recently watched that left an impression on you.
JUNHO & JUNSU: 2PM. (laughs)
JUNSU: Just kidding.
JUNHO: The two of us went to the Usher concert held in Korea in July. That was fun!

—Do the members cook in the dormitory?
JUNHO: It’s not so much cooking as frying meat and making ramen. We’ve also made kimchi fried rice and sunny side-ups. Just simple stuff. But as long as I have the recipe and ingredients, I’m confident that I can cook up something delicious! I actually learned cooking for half a year when I was young.

NICHKHUN x WOOYOUNG
I prefer sleeping on the floor to sleeping on the bed. (laughs) (Wooyoung)

—2PM’s cute looks became a hot topic when you dressed as a female idol group on stage and showed your drama parody at the concert this summer!
WOO: Thank you very much! We all think Nichkhun looks the best when he crossdresses. He’s cool and he has pretty features, so he looks very natural.
KHUN: I was really embarrassed, though. (laughs) Actually, Taecyeon was the one who most enjoyed the Orange Caramel performance.
WOO: Taecyeon and I really wanted to sing the Orange Caramel song. The fans were happy, and we had a lot of fun, too!
KHUN: I have girlish features while Taecyeon has a manly face, but Taecyeon looked better dressed as a girl, so it was kind of reversed. (laughs)

—Nichkhun-san, you appear on “We Got Married” as well, am I correct? Your fake marriage with Victoria-san from f(x) is also quite popular.
KHUN: Victoria-san is a very nice, hardworking person, so we make a good match and we’re having fun.
WOO: I’m so envious… he’s always telling us, “We could have done better.” (laughs) That’s all he says, though. (laughs)
KHUN: There are breaks between shoots, so we were quite shy at first, but now we’re used to it and we’re enjoying our takes.

—So, which member would you date if you were a girl?
WOO: People ask this a lot…
KHUN: Wanna hook up with me? (laughs)
WOO: (laughs) It’s a very tough question. We’ve stayed together for so long that we know everything about each other, both good and bad…. also, if I were to choose Nichkhun here, then the other members might feel lonely.
KHUN: You’ll have to become a playboy then. Date all the members and become a cheater. (laughs)

—You’re all so close. I’d imagine you have a lot of stories to tell since you live together.
KHUN: I share a room with Chansung, but he often sleeps in the living room.
WOO: I share a room with Junho, but I also sleep in the living room… I don’t really like beds. It doesn’t really befit an idol, but I like the floor. (laughs) Sometimes I can’t sleep because Chansung’s watching TV in the living room, so I sleep on Chansung’s bed instead. I go in and out of rooms, basically.
KHUN: That’s how we enjoy living together. (laughs)

TAECYEON x CHANSUNG
If we were a family, Nichkhun would be the grandfather. (Taecyeon)

—All of 2PM’s MVs are powerful and memorable, but what are you like behind the scenes?
CHAN: Actually, the choreography for all our dances are difficult, so we can’t perform anymore if we do it over 3 times. (laughs)
TAEC: Because they’re really hard.
CHAN: Every single time a new song comes out, we’d say, “This dance is the most intense…”
TAEC: The song we’re promoting right now, “I’ll Be Back”, is clearly the most intense. (laughs)
CHAN: That’s how we always talk on set. (laughs)
TAEC: Speaking of which, we had to shoot the concept of dancing in the rain for the “Without U” MV, but the water they used for the rain was super cold…
CHAN: Yeah, yeah! (laughs)
TAEC: When the rain poured down on us, we all had to hold our breaths and endure the cold. (laughs)

—You were very masculine in the MV, but which member would you date if you were a girl?
TAEC & CHAN: None of them, none at all!

—Not even one person (laughs)!? How about the member you absolutely wouldn’t date?
CHAN: Hmm… ah, I can think of one. (laughs)
TAEC: If I had a younger sister, I don’t think I want to introduce her to Nichkhun. He’s gentle and sincere, but he treats all girls like that, so it might make my sister jealous.
CHAN: For me… it’d be Wooyoung I guess. ’cause he doesn’t have much experience in romance. (laughs)
TAEC: You’re saying he can’t take the lead? (laughs)
CHAN: I think I’ll get frustrated. (laughs)

—Then if your group were a family, who would each member be?
CHAN: First, I think Wooyoung would be the mother.
TAEC: (in Japanese) Mom~
CHAN: Then, Taecyeon would be the uncle who doesn’t listen to anyone.
TAEC: What~~~~!
CHAN: Okay fine, you can be the head of the household.
TAEC: That was a sudden change. (laughs)
CHAN: ’cause we already have an uncle (laughs): Junsu!
TAEC: Haha. Then Nichkhun will be the grandfather. (laughs) Junho’s the oldest son who just got into his rebellious stage of adolescence. (laughs)
CHAN: He’s way past puberty, though. (laughs)
TAEC: And the youngest Chansung is still so young that he has no idea what’s going on.
CHAN: Yeah, all I do is laugh. (laughs)

Individual Q&A Interviews

~* JUNSU *~
Born on January 15, 1988 | Capricorn | Bloodtype A | 180cm

1) What is your favourite 2PM song and dance?
My favourite song is “Gimme The Light”, while my favourite dance is “Again&Again”. If it’s the MV, I like “Without U” best. Though the video is pretty, it was the most difficult MV to film because of the pouring rain.
2) Who’s your favourite artiste?
I’ve always liked D’Angelo. Lately, I also like Kanye West.
3) What song would you like to cover?
It’s an old song, but Yoo Jae Ha-san’s “You in My Arms”.
4) What kind of girl do you like?
Someone who’s honest, kind, and if possible, with a cute smile.
5) What is your favourite Japanese word?
The phrase my friend in Osaka taught me: “Nandeyanen”. (T/N: “Nandeyanen” is best translated to “wtf”. It’s from the Kansai dialect used by people in the Kansai region, which Osaka is a part of.)
6) What do you want your members to change?
I want to say this to Taecyeon! Please stop calling yourself a fashion leader while choosing weird clothes to wear! (laughs)
7) What is your motto?
To never forget the feelings we have when we first start out. I will always remember how I felt when I was first inspired by Stevie Wonder to become a singer, and with this in mind, I will continue to love music from here on.
8) Please tell us about your hometown, Daegu!
Our makchang (large intestines) is really delicious. I also recommend the jimkalbi (beef short ribs). Daegu is very hot in the summer and very cold in the winter, so it’s not a nice place in terms of the climate, but it’s full of human warmth! It’s also said that we have many handsome men and beautiful ladies. (laughs)

Show us your belongings!
This is my beloved iPad. I often use the applications to write songs. There’s lots of music and videos in there, too. Fans gave it to me as a present; it’s very convenient and I cherish it greatly.

~* TAECYEON *~
Born on December 27, 1988 | Capricorn | Bloodtype AB | 185cm

1) What is your favourite 2PM song?
“Don’t Stop Can’t Stop”. It’s a song filled with our heartfelt emotions. I like the MV for “Heartbeat”. The heartbeats at the beginning of the song are the actual recordings of our own heartbeats.
2) Who is your favourite artiste?
I’ve gotten addicted to listening to music lately and I often listen to Kim Dong Ryul-sempai’s songs. (T/N: “Sempai” means “senior”.)
3) What song would you like to cover?
I want to cover the song, “Shape of My Heart” from the movie “Leon”, 2PM style.
4) What kind of girl do you like?
Someone who has a lot of feminine charms. I also like girls with different aspects to their personality.
5) What is your favourite Japanese word?
“Mada mada” (I have a long way to go). I like the idea of working harder to improve.
6) Where would you like to go in Japan?
I want to travel around Japan and experience its culture.
7) What do you want your members to change?
I share a room with Junsu and I wish he’d put on some clothes. (laughs) He has a habit of not wearing pants. (laughs)
8) What is your motto?
Let’s live our lives seriously!
9) What are your thoughts on starring in “Cinderella’s Sister”?
My character speaks in dialect, so Wooyoung and Junsu taught me their dialects. I hope to star in a different kind of drama soon.
10) What are your thoughts on appearing in “Family Outing 2″?
I visited many places for the first time, so it made me rediscover the charms of Korea!

Show us your belongings!
This is the iPod touch I always carry with me; my must-have item. I also listen to music when I sleep. Sometimes it’s gone when I wake up in the morning… but I always find it under my bed. (laughs)

~* WOOYOUNG *~
Born on April 30, 1989 | Taurus | Bloodtype B | 178cm

1) What is your favourite 2PM song?
“Heartbeat”. Although it was a really tough time for us, all of us banded together to overcome those difficulties with this song.
2) Who is your favourite artiste?
Michael Jackson, clearly. If it’s Japanese artistes, it’d have to be Gackt-san and everyone in Arashi. It’s not only amazing that they’ve been active for a long time, but I also respect them for being able to maintain and keep that up.
3) What song would you like to cover?
I really like the music style of a jazz & hiphop artiste called Nishihara Kenichiro-san. I’d like to do a cover, 2PM style.
4) What kind of girl do you like?
Someone I can talk to.
5) What is your favourite Japanese word?
It’s a word I like in Korean as well: “shiawase” (happiness/prosperity). I like the meaning, so I remembered it instantly.
6) What do you want to eat in Japan?
Ramen!
7) What do you want your members to change?
We’ve always had discussions like that in our two years of living together, so there isn’t anything I want them to change right now.
8) What is your motto?
I think nothing is impossible with effort. So, if you can’t do something, I think it’s because you didn’t put in enough effort.
9) What do you usually practise?
I basically practise singing and dancing all the time. I also play basketball. Besides that, I do breakdancing – something I’m personally interested in – to keep in shape.

Show us your belongings!
When I only have a photoshoot like today, I just walk around with two items: my cellphone and an MP3 player. This cellphone has a function I can use to study Japanese, and I also use it to send text messages to friends. I’ve exchanged messages with at most 10 people in a day.

~* NICHKHUN *~
Born on June 24, 1988 | Cancer | Bloodtype O | 180cm

1) What is your favourite 2PM dance?
I like the dance for “Heartbeat”. Because it’s not just dancing, but also a developed story that involves a human pyramid and acting like zombies.
2) Who is your favourite artiste?
Park Jin Young-PD, because he’s the one who composes our songs. I also like the singer called Ra.D who wrote the song “I Can’t” for us. For Japanese artistes, it’s Utada Hikaru-san. I listened to “First Love” when I was 12 years old and fell in love with her songs.
3) What song would you like to cover?
Ra.D’s “I’m in LOVE”.
4) What kind of girl do you like?
I don’t really have a preference, but I’d like someone who’s kind, cute and respectful towards her parents.
5) What is your favourite Japanese word?
“Aishiteru” (I love you). (laughs), “kawaii” (cute), “hayaku aitai desu” (I want to hurry up and meet you soon).
6) What do you want to eat in Japan?
Ramen, sushi, and tonkatsu (breaded pork with rice)!
7) What do you want your members to change?
Taecyeon and Junsu stay in the room next door, so when they compose songs at night, I can’t sleep because of the noise. Chansung should clear his plates after he’s done eating. And I wish everyone would get up earlier in the morning. I’m always the first to get up, so I have to wake up everyone else. (laughs)
8) How was it, coming from Thailand to Korea to be a trainee?
I didn’t know the language, so I had a hard time. I didn’t have any intention to be a singer at the time, but I gradually started to have that desire, and that’s how I came to be in 2PM now.

Show us your belongings!
These are vitamin pills I bought recently. Now I’m really busy with the promotions of our new song and the recordings for “We Got Married”, so… I bought these for my health because I’m a little tired. I always take these pills no matter where I am.

~* CHANSUNG *~
Born on February 11, 1990 | Aquarius | Bloodtype B | 184cm

1) What is your favourite 2PM dance?
I like our current song, “I’ll Be Back”. A large portion of it consists of dancing and the choreography involves lots of leg work, so it helps to build up our physical strength, too. (laughs) I like the MV for “10 out of 10″. It was our first MV and there’s a cute feel of teenaged boys clamouring after a girl.
2) Who is your favourite artiste?
Right now, I’m addicted to watching video clips of artistes, and I often watch Maxwell, Usher and Brian McKnight’s videos because I’m currently collecting them.
3) What song would you like to cover?
Lee Eun Mi-san’s “A Certain Nostalgia”.
4) What kind of girl do you like?
I don’t talk much, so someone cute and bright would be nice. Also, someone who can understand me, and I, her.
5) What is your favourite Japanese word?
“Sumimasen” (I’m sorry). I think it’s a good word because it expresses consideration for the other person.
6) Who would you like to meet in Japan?
I don’t know if I can meet him (laughs), but Kimura Takuya-san.
7) What do you want your members to change?
Junsu takes long showers even when we’re in a rush in the morning, so it’d be great if he could hurry it up a little. (laughs)
8) What is your motto?
No pain, no gain.
9) As the youngest member of the group, which member gives you the strongest image of an older brother?
Hmm, Taecyeon I guess. (laughs) I didn’t choose him because he’s next to me and watching me or anything… ahem. (laughs)

Show us your belongings!
This is a novel by Patrick Süskind called “The Pigeon”. Before this, I read his novel called “Perfume” and found it really interesting, so I bought this new one. I like Higashino Keigo-san’s novels too, so I’ve read nearly all his works.

~* JUNHO *~
Born on January 25, 1990 | Aquarius | Bloodtype A | 178cm

1) What is your favourite 2PM song and dance?
I always like our latest song, so right now it’s “I’ll Be Back”. The shuffle dance for “I’ll Be Back” is also my favourite dance.
2) Who is your favourite artiste?
I’ve recently gotten into rock. I loved it when I was a child and I’ve started listening to it again lately. My hobby is songwriting, so I decided to listen to different genres of music.
3) What song would you like to cover?
If it’s a Japanese song, it’s the theme song for the anime “GTO”, L’Arc-en-Ciel’s “Driver’s High”. That, and my cover of M.C. The Max’s “Poem of Love”on Korean TV wasn’t aired, so I hope to sing that again.
4) What kind of girl do you like?
I fall for different people on different occasions, so I choose based on my feelings.
5) What is your favourite Japanese word?
In the drama “Gokusen”, Arashi’s Matsumoto Jun-san’s line, “Shut up”, was very memorable. (laughs)
7) What do you want your members to change?
Junsu and Chansung don’t turn off the lights. They’d go into the toilet and leave without turning off the lights. But, when one person turns it off, another person will turn it on… that’s how it works. There’s 6 of us after all. (laughs) I don’t have anything else besides that.
8) What is your motto?
I have two: one is to always express the truth and your heartfelt sincerity. The second is to stretch your limits as far as you can.

Show us your belongings!
This is a machine that takes videos. I bought it to record our practices. I’ve recorded our dances, songs and performances to watch. If I don’t like them, I delete them right away, though. (laughs) Our practice sessions for “I’ll Be Back” are in there, too.

QUOTE
BACK SHOT
This interview was conducted in Seoul, but 2PM greeted us in Japanese from the very start: “Let’s work hard today” and “Okay, let’s do this”. Surrounded by many staff members, the atmosphere was friendly from start to finish.

(From left to right, starting at the top)
Here’s a playful shot of the 6 members playing janken (rock, paper, scissors) to determine their standing positions for a group picture. They all worked harmoniously throughout the interview and photoshoot; all the members are truly very close to each other.

Nichkhun watches Wooyoung with a gentle gaze as the other boy answers an interview question.

Wooyoung gives a perfect peace sign when we turn the polaroid camera towards him☆ The serious way in which he considered each and every question carefully before he gave his answer was quite memorable. Taecyeon also gives us a playful pose.♪ He kept smiling throughout his interview.

Nichkhun seriously asking the staff about his message to Japanese fans. He tried his very best to write his message in hiragana!

Junho talking about his favourite camera. He tried to show us 2PM’s practice sessions, but the battery died… too bad!

Gentlemen Chansung and Taecyeon held their own interview mike when they gave their answers for the interview. Their rapid-fire dialogue and appropriate pauses were so brilliant, they caused endless laughter!

For the individual photoshoots with flowers, the members chose their favourite flowers one by one. The first person for the photoshoot, Taecyeon, chose a red rose. Nichkhun walks around while holding a sunflower in his hand.

2PM is very good at switching from smiles to manly expressions! Now they’re listening carefully to a cameraman’s instructions.

Junsu happily talking about his hometown, Daegu. He also operated and explained the workings of the iPad he introduced as one of his belongings.

QUOTE
Mnet’s popular music programme
Let’s crash “M Countdown”!
Backstage reports!!

2PM appeared in black suits for their pre-recording of “Heartbeat”. Taecyeon explains the choreography to the director, while Junsu warms up his throat by singing a song; each member is busy preparing for the recording. Once someone cries “start,” they give us such a dynamic performance that it’s hard to believe there’s only 6 members dancing on stage. The fans who came to watch them also livened up the atmosphere with their loud cheers. Right after the recording, the members head straight to the monitors for a monitor-check. As all the members form a circle to check the performance with each other, you can feel their extraordinary passion for the stage. At the next “I’ll Be Back” rehearsal, the 6 members appeared with their tops removed because of the heat. When Chansung ended the performance with his cute gesture of fanning the other members with an uchiwa (a round Japanese fan), the fans went crazy. The mood in the studio softened with that tender moment. The boys were nominated for 1st place with their perfectly synchronized dance for the actual take. The fans also cheered with as much passion as the performance, pumping up the stage by becoming one with the group.

Captions
Taecyeon seems concerned about Chansung’s pants. Noticing Taecyeon’s gaze, Chansung suddenly gets flustered and checks his pants….
TAEC: Don’t your pants look kinda weird?
CHAN: Y-You think so?

A. Taecyeon, Wooyoung and Chansung appeared for the MC corner and delivered a well-paced talk session.
B. Though Taecyeon overflows with charisma on stage, he’s full of smiles as he hums a tune by Supreme Team during the rehearsal breaks.
C. After the rehearsal, all the members go straight to the monitors for a monitor-check, drenched with sweat.
D. Junho checks the performance with the staff and his members in between recordings.
E. Nichkhun listens with utmost seriousness to the staff’s instructions.
F. Chansung waiting for the real take of “Heartbeat” on stage. After the rehearsal ended, he said to the fans, “Go home safely, okay?”

Source: Haru*Hana Magazine Vol. 2
Scans from suntaec
Translated by fantaisie @ Wild2Day.org