Here’s How Each Red Velvet Member Was Discovered, And Signed To SM

Here’s how each member ended up becoming part of Red Velvet!

1. Irene

Irene dreamed of becoming a newscaster when she was young. She had even been an announcer for her school broadcast when she was in 5th grade of elementary school.

During her school days, Irene danced to TVXQ’s “Rising Sun” at a school talent show and she loved listening and dancing to music in general.

When there was something she wanted to do, she did not hesitate to try it out. As a result, she took makeup classes and even attended a flight attendant academy in the past.

When Irene was in her 1st year of high school, she followed her friend to an audition and did an audition herself.

Irene during her audition

When she failed the audition, she realized that this was something she really wanted to do. She apparently did not expect to find herself crying so much after hearing that she had failed.

Irene during her audition

Later on, she was on her way to eat ddeokbokki after class when she received a phone call indicating that SM Entertainment wanted to sign a contract with her. She said that she remembered the exact location and even the air around her when she received that phone call.

Irene’s profile photo submitted for her audition

Even during her trainee days, she was known among other trainees for her exceptional visuals and dance skills.

Irene’s profile photo submitted for her audition

She joined SM Entertainment’s pre-debut group SM Rookies in December 2013 and soon after appeared on Henry’s “1-4-3” music video before finally debuting as a member of Red Velvet in 2014.


2. Seulgi

Seulgi became an SM trainee through an open audition. Her father submitted her application for the audition when she was in 6th grade of elementary school. When she didn’t receive a call back, she assumed she had failed the audition but a year later, the long-awaited phone call came and she began training in her 1st year of middle school.

During her trainee days, Seulgi attended school without drawing much attention as SM Entertainment had instructed her to keep it a secret that she was a trainee.

She was apparently friends with f(x) Krystal, Sulli and EXO Kai during the time she was a trainee. She became one of the most well-known SM trainees after Sulli and Krystal mentioned her name on Radio Star as the girl Kyuhyun was interested in.

Seulgi enjoyed the first 3~4 years of her trainee life and then experienced a slump which set her back. During this time, she doubted whether this was the right path for her, seeing her other friends enjoy normal lives, but also knew that this was what she was good at, and what she loved doing.

Only after meeting the other Red Velvet members, was she able to regain her energy and continue her training passionately. Her father, who even made a surprise singing performance at her school festival, was also her biggest supporter and source of encouragement. She later joined SM Rookies, was featured in Henry’s “Butterfly”, and appeared on Henry’s “Fantastic” music video before debuting as a member of Red Velvet!


3. Wendy

Wendy had shown interest in singing since she was 6 years old. In addition to her outstanding singing skills, she is also able to play several musical instruments including the piano, guitar, flute and saxophone.

When Wendy was living abroad before her debut, a friend had uploaded a video of her singing which quickly became very popular.

With all of the encouraging comments that were posted on the video, Wendy gained confidence and decided to upload more videos and pursue singing, which she loved the most.

In 2011, she submitted an online audition for Koreaboo: Cube Entertainment’s Global Auditions. Though she was not the final winner, she was one of fifteen finalists selected by Koreaboo from over 5,000 videos to continue to the final round in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and open for G.NA’s first solo showcase.

Wendy was cast by SM Entertainment after auditioning at the S.M. Global Audition in Canada in 2012 and was introduced as a member of S.M. Entertainment’s pre-debut group SM Rookies on March 14, 2014. As part of SM Rookies, Wendy released the song “Because I Love You” for the soundtrack of the Mnet drama Mimi and appeared in the song’s music video.


4. Joy

Joy loved to sing since she was young and was particularly interested in modern trot music. Ever since her 2nd year of middle school when she first stood on stage at a school field trip, she couldn’t help but continue going up on stage often to perform.

She was cast through the 2012 Global SM Audition in Seoul in her 1st year of high school. She sang the song “I Wish It Could Be That Way Now”, a song by Cho Yong Pil back in 1993 (three years before she was even born!). She sang the song after her debut on a program with her beautiful voice giving the audience a taste of what her audition could have been like.

She has confessed that she had a difficult time during her trainee days when her singing and dance practice didn’t go well and it sometimes made her doubt the path she chose. However, she added that once she overcame the obstacles, it was well worth it.

Unlike the other members, who were introduced through SM Rookies, Joy was not introduced through the pre-debut group before her debut two years after she began training. She has since been active not only as a member of Red Velvet, but also as a rising new actress.


5. Yeri

Yeri auditioned and became a trainee at a very young age when she was in 5th grade of elementary school.

For the audition, she prepared only JYP songs as she had heard somewhere that you must not sing SM songs at their audition. She later found out that this was not the case as the auditioner had her sing a song from their own company.

She became an SM Rookie and appeared on Red Velvet’s “Happiness” music video along with other SM Rookie members before later being added as a member of Red Velvet after their debut for their first mini-album “Ice Cream Cake”.

She has been rumored to be one of Lee Soo Man’s favorite trainees, which is why people suspect she was added to Red Velvet after they already debuted. According to the rumors, due to the fact that Sulli had left f(x), the group was now left with 4 members which is the same number of members Red Velvet had. As a result, Yeri, who particularly caught the eye of Lee Soo Man, was added to the group.

Source: MBLPark, Tenasia, Ohmynews and Newsen

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