SBS MTV - The Show

Some exchange students, including me, got free tickets for the Korean TV Show “The Show”. This TV show features several K-pop groups. Although I’m not a K-pop fan, I thought it might be a great chance to dive in deeper into Korean culture. K-pop is everywhere in Korea, they even play it sometimes in the morning on the entire campus when I go to my classes.

We had to arrive one hour prior to the show in order to be admitted. The show took place in one of the large media towers in Seoul. After one hour of waiting in the cold we were allowed to enter the studio. It was much smaller than I expected, maybe about 300 people did fit in. Fortunately, we had seats and didn’t need to stand. In front of the stage was a small standing area for K-pop fans who wanted to be closer to their idols. However, this area was really packed and I doubt that people in the back could see anything at all.

Before the show started we were instructed several times not to take any photos and that we are not allowed to leave our seats during the show. The show hosts practiced their lines a few times before the show went live.

Even though it was said that the show would be live, the only parts that were broadcasted live were the dialogs of the show hosts. The performances of the K-pop groups were already pre-recorded. Nevertheless, all of the groups went on stage and performed while the pre-recording was broadcasted. Most of the time they left the stage in the middle of the performance while the music was still playing.

The entire show lasted about 1.5 hours. It was definitely quite interesting and all of the performers were great dancers. Another thing that I noticed in other parts of Korean life but also in K-pop is the strict separation between boys and girls. There are no mixed K-pop groups. Only groups that consist solely of men or women. The Koreans I asked about it couldn’t really explain the reason to me. But also in the dormitory or in school boys and girls are separated. This separation seems to be part of Korean culture.

The show is also available online, however the audience is never shown.