Hong Kong Girl Group Member Withdraws After Freak Accident At Her Labelmates’ Concert Left Her Boyfriend Paralyzed — Here’s The Full Story
Hong Kong rising girl group COLLAR‘s So Ching announced her departure from the group ten months after an incident at her labelmates’ concert, which left her boyfriend, Mo, paralyzed.
So Ching and Mo met before her debut, when they were both dancers. They had been dating for a couple of years at the time of the incident.
So Ching made her debut with COLLAR in January 2022. The group consisted of eight members who were contestants of Hong Kong’s idol audition show, King Maker Season 4. With their debut, they became labelmates with Hong Kong’s top boy group MIRROR, consisting of 12 contestants from King Maker Season 1.
While So Ching joined COLLAR through King Maker Season 4, Mo participated in King Maker Season 1. Although he didn’t debut, he remained close to MIRROR and performed as their backup dancer. Mo even posed for photos while sitting on the stage the day before the incident.
In July 2022, MIRROR kicked off their MIRROR WE ARE Live Concert shows in Hong Kong. However, a tragic incident occurred during their 4th show, leaving multiple backup dancers injured and the remaining performances canceled.
During the show on July 28th, a giant LED screen fell onto the stage from high up on the roof. Unfortunately, Mo took most of the force of the drop. He was rushed to the hospital and has remained in a facility since then.
Mo’s dad has continued to provide updates about his son’s health to the public. While Mo has made significant progress, he is still unable to walk on his own at this time. His other movements are also very limited.
Following the incident, So Ching went on a hiatus, and fans wondered if she would ever come back. Many netizens believed her label was at least partially to blame for what happened to her boyfriend, given that they should’ve overseen MIRROR’s concert, including the setting up of the stage. Therefore, netizens doubted whether So Ching would continue to work for the label.
Additionally, Mo’s dad constantly praised So Ching for taking care of Mo after the incident. As such, many netizens also worried about whether So Ching was physically and mentally well enough to perform again.
Despite the speculations and to the pleasant surprise of COLLAR’s fans, So Ching returned to stage on January 1, 2023. She attended and performed at an award show with her groupmates, earning huge applause and cheers from the crowd when she sang her lines.
Since then, she has also made other appearances and performed at other shows, such as a mini concert in collaboration with her groupmate Winka and the music festival Clockenflap.
Although it seemed like So Ching was starting to recover from the tragedy, speculations of her withdrawing from the group began circulating again when she was absent from the Chill Club Chart Award Presentation on May 7. The host company of the award show and her label are owned by the same corporation, which made her absence suspicious to some netizens.
On that day, her fellow COLLAR members were questioned about her absence, to which they responded that she was sick. However, three days later, on May 10, her label issued a press conference notice, with the event itself scheduled just three hours after the time of the email. The email was simply titled, “Press Conference Regarding COLLAR’s Newest Plans.”
Many netizens were sure that So Ching was withdrawing from the group, so the press conference was scheduled with such short notice. Finally, So Ching herself confirmed the speculations in an Instagram update posted shortly before the start of the press conference.
Firstly, So Ching recalled how her days had been following the incident.
Since July 28, 2022, the scars left by what happened that day have never healed. Every trip to the emergency room and the hospital has been imprinted in my heart, leaving a trace that can never be obliterated.
Throughout the past ten months, I’ve had different thoughts and emotions. Though I’ve stood in front of everyone and been on stage, I’m still not used to being a public figure at this time. After contemplating and discussing with my company, I’ve decided to withdraw from COLLAR.
These days really haven’t been easy, but as a member of COLLAR, I’ve experienced what it’s like to have you all stay by my side, supporting and encouraging me. Whenever I felt I didn’t deserve all this, you scooped me up from the bottom with your kind words and hugs. Perhaps I’ve let you down with this decision. I’m very sorry, but I hope for your understanding. Everyone experiences different things and walks different paths. Perhaps one can be more comfortable and work harder to show their potential when they’re all in a place where there are no concerns.
— So Ching
She also addressed her future, something her fans had been constantly worrying about in the months before her departure, despite her temporary return.
I’m uncertain about my future and want to focus on my physical and mental health. I want to find sources of happiness and take care of myself. I once thought it was easy to be happy, but it turned out not everyone can be happy easily. In the future, perhaps I’ll continue to work hard on dancing or other things in order to prepare myself to become a better, happier, and more reliable person.
— So Ching
She ended her post with how grateful she is towards everyone who supported her during these difficult times.
I’m thankful to all parties and my members for understanding, accepting, and respecting my thoughts and decisions. I’m thankful to my company for giving me the freedom to do what I wanted to do. Please allow me to apologize for not being able to meet everyone again as a member of COLLAR.
Lastly, please trust that it’s possible to be a person who brings warmth to others. Be more loving and empathic. Listen and understand more. I hope we can all become someone who brings a bit of warmth to others.
Thank you for being with me for all this time.
Thank you, everyone.
— So Ching
While So Ching did not attend the scheduled press conference, the remaining seven COLLAR members and their manager, Wing, were present to speak with the media.
Wing started the press conference by confirming the departure of So Ching from COLLAR.
I’m sure everyone has already seen the announcements from So Ching and the company on social media. So Ching will be withdrawing from COLLAR. We and the company very much respect So Ching’s decision.
In the future, my team and I will forge ahead with COLLAR. We hope So Ching will find her path. Thank you, everyone, for all of your continued support.
– Wing, COLLAR’s manager
After COLLAR’s manager made her statement to the press, the group’s leader Gao spoke on behalf of the entire group, expressing support for So Ching.
Hi everyone, we are COLLAR. We want to speak to you about one thing today. Our member So Ching made a difficult decision, and that is to withdraw from the group, leaving COLLAR.
Just like everyone, we can’t bear to part with her. However, these days, we have seen her trying hard to balance many aspects of her life, including performing on stage again. We hope everyone gives her some space as she makes a new start to live her life quietly and freely. We know it’s been very tough, so we definitely respect her decision.
In the future, COLLAR will continue with seven members. We will work hard, just like before, to show you good work and performances. Thank you for standing by us all this time. We hope you continue to support COLLAR and accompany us as we forge ahead.
Lastly, thank you once again for your support and love. We hope you wish So Ching well. Thank you, everyone.
– Gao, COLLAR’s leader
Besides COLLAR, MIRROR also previously spoke to the media about the tragedy. You can read more about the members’ honest thoughts regarding what happened here:
Hong Kong Boy Group MIRROR Speaks On Their True Feelings Following Near-Fatal Accident At Their Concert
The investigation of the incident is ongoing.