The first thing that came to our minds when we read the name of today’s interviewee is, “long time no see”. And indeed it has been a little while since we’ve seen this person. First making an appearance as a trainee-contestant on the Mnet program “MyDOL” in 2012, following by a year long stint as a member of DEMION, allow us to introduce Nakhun as today’s guest.
Noah Ro (Korean name: Ro Nakhun, born December 8, 1990) is South Korean entertainer, formerly from Sydney, Australia. He appeared on the survival competition program ‘MyDOL’ in 2012, vying for a chance to become a member of idol group VIXX. Following that, he formally debuted as a member of DEMION in 2013, before the group disbanded the following year. Since then, he’s been pursuing various interests of his before beginning his military enlistment in September of 2015. Recently, Nakhun took a short break from his service and by chance we were able to contact him and get some words on what he’s been up to and how his feels about his fans, among other things…take a look!
For those who aren’t familiar with who you are, please introduce yourself briefly.
What a great opportunity to catch up with you guys! I host quite a few mention parties on Twitter to interact with you guys, but I always found it difficult to keep up with the tweets you guys send me. And my mention parties were all set at random times which must have given you guys a hard time coming up with a good question to ask before each event closed. For those of you who have no idea who I am, my name is Nakhun Ro (my English name is Noah), and I am a former K-pop artist. I debuted in 2013 as a member of Demion, but most people know me better as one of the original members from MyDol (competition program set to form the members of VIXX), or Leo’s best friend.
It’s been a long time since you’ve greeted fans, How have you been? You’re currently doing your enlistment requirement, right?
I’ve been keeping myself busy with a lot of different things before my enlistment; photography, videography, travelling, etc. I did manage to enlist in the army at a late age, and so far I’m quite liking the lifestyle as a soldier. Sure, it gets rough and tiring from all the hard training, but I’m kind of enjoying it.
How do you feel about having fans cheering for you since day one, no matter what it is that you’re pursuing?
I CAN’T THANK MY FANS ENOUGH! They have always been supportive through my SNS (social media). Having people that know who you and who care about you from all over the world? It’s just so amazing that I can’t even find the right adjectives to express myself.
As some fans know, you originally debuted as a member of boy band DEMION in 2013, followed by a disbandment the following year. Firstly talk about your experience as a member of the group.
The experience as a member of Demion was very dynamic. From such a small company with so little budget, I never expected us to be able to do all the things we’ve done. We promoted ourselves through radio, TV broadcasts, and even had our own mini concert in Japan. I am very grateful for the things I got the chance to experience during that time.
What were your thoughts when your found out your former company could no longer support the group?
Our disbandment was expected and not quite surprising, but it still was a disappointment. I didn’t blame the company because I knew they did their best. The most difficult thing for me wasn’t the end of my idol career nor was it our packing and leaving the shared house, but coming up with the best timing to notify our fans about the news.
If things had been different, do you think you guys would still be together as a group?
Yes, why wouldn’t we? We still hang out together as a group from time to time.
Are you still in touch with the other members? What have they been up to since then?
I’ve always been in touch with my members. Yoon was the first to enlist in the army in May 2015, then it was Sangbum in June 2015, and then I enlisted in September of 2015. Haekeun, on the other hand, had kept himself busy preparing for a fresh debut in a new rookie group but eventually it didn’t work out. He was the last to enlist, in December of 2015. Ssun, or better known as Taeyang, has being studying and working on his own music with the help of a music producer friend, as a solo artist.
Fans that have been with you since day one know also that you competed to become a member of VIXX in 2012. Through all the experiences you’ve had, what has changed the most about your goals as an artist, your passion for music etc.?
Honestly, my passion as an artist has always been the same. I’ve always loved art and I always found new ways to express my ideas through it. I don’t want to limit my art in the category of K-pop and that’s why I’ve been working on photography and videography, etc.
Any insight that you can share to those considering entering Korea’s music industry, whether as a trainee, singer etc.?
Of course preparing and working on your vocal and dancing skills is mandatory. But being able to speak Korean would be a major plus. Doors won’t open to those who give up easily!
You also hosted Pops in Seoul with four other talented artists – SAM, Coco, Tasha and 1Kyne. Talk about that experience.
I had been a part of Pops in Seoul for almost a year since my first appearance as a guest while Hyerim of Wonder Girls was hosting it. The other four MCs and I haven’t had the chance to meet up regularly except when we were filming special editions, but we definitely had some fun times together. I remember when I was the main MC for a winter special edition, it was planned out like a mini Christmas concert, and I enjoyed our writers giving me a hard time on stage asking me to buy some time while the next artists get ready. I did have a script in hand, but the interactions with the fans were 100% real. I wasn’t good with following up to whatever the script said anyways! hahaha
Once you finish your military service, what’s next for you?
I’m planning a small business. Something that I can get artistic about. But I’m still being careful about giving out any details because I always have so many ideas in my head, and who knows which idea I’ll stick to when I finish my service.
Can fans expect any solo releases down the road?
I may or may not participate in certain small projects of my music producer friend in the future, but I can’t make any promises.
As far as music is concerned, who gives you your inspiration?
I’ve always loved the music of Skylar Grey and her dramatic voice. Her choice of lyrics also inspires me a lot. Recently, I’ve been listening to a lot of Charlie Puth and Sam Smith’s music.
Have you had the chance to visit Australia since you left to pursue music?
Sadly, I haven’t. I did have a few chances to travel overseas, but I postponed visiting Australia every time because I wanted to visit somewhere new to me. But I’m actually planning a family trip to Australia after I finish my military service!
After the disbandment, you started pursuing photography. Is that something you want to do more full-time or is it just a hobby?
Photography is also something I love. I’ve had many thoughts on whether I should work full-time on this, but keeping photography as a hobby lets me be more creative and less stressed. I’m guessing that nothing would be full-time for me because I want to do so many things with my life!
What is your guilty pleasure currently? It can be anything!
I just can’t stop humming the Produce 101 songs these days. The songs are just awesome!
When you have spare time, what do you do for fun?
In my spare time, I am quite a heavy gamer. I can play for so many hours straight. I enjoy playing League of Legends and Diablo 3. I also daydream a lot. That’s when all the good ideas come into my head. I just love planning out my ideas and thinking about how I could bring those thoughts to life.
Name one thing that fans may not already know about you.
Starlights (VIXX fans) refer to me as ‘Taekwoon’s mom” because I care about my best friend and support him that much. But the truth is, he takes care of me more than I do for him. He nags me when I act immature, bring me things that I might need, and invites me to all his performances. I bet you guys didn’t know that! Leo is a very kind and caring friend.
Anything else you want to say to your fans and the readers?
I love chatting with you guys via Twitter. I just hope you guys will still be there to chat when I finish my military service! I’ll plan out some awesome ideas and bring you guys some fresh and entertaining news. Thank you rhythm.connection for this great opportunity, and thanks to all my minions!! (that’s what i call my small group of fans. hahaha)
Many thanks to Nakhun for taking the time to answer our questions and give you folks quite the update. Until next time, this has been a rhythm.connection exclusive! 🙂