Where Are They Now? — 4 Former SM Rookies Who Left Before Debuting In The New Girl Group

One former SM Rookies trainee actually debuted last year.

According to past announcements, SM Entertainment’s new girl group is set to debut later this year. However, many of the SM Rookies pre-debut group members who were once expected to be part of the final lineup have already left the company. The question is, what are they doing now?

1. Herin

Herin was introduced as a member of SM Rookies in July 2015 at the age of 13 years old. Herin specialized in acting, appearing in Disney Channel’s Mickey Mouse Club as a trainee. Born in Manchester, UK, Herin likely would’ve been the designated English speaker in the new girl group.

Herin left SM Entertainment in 2017 to join Mnet’s Idol School—the show that produced fromis_9. However, she was eliminated in Episode 9, ranking #22 overall.

After leaving Idol School, it seems that Herin left the idol scene completely and returned to her home country, England. These days, she uploads regular vlogs on her YouTube channel, Bonjavenue (which has over 75,000 subscribers).

Currently 18 years old, Herin recently returned to Korea and filmed a vlog with Red Velvet’s Yeri. Despite Herin leaving SM Entertainment several years ago, the two have remained close friends.

| Bonjavenue/YouTube

2. Yiyang

Yiyang was introduced as a member of SM Rookies in September 2016 at the age of 19. Born in Sichuan, China, Yiyang was expected to be one of the group’s official visuals due to her similarity with f(x)’s Krystal.

Yiyang left SM Entertainment in August 2018 and returned to China, joining Beijing agency L.TAO Entertainment.

Later that year, she participated in The Next Top Bang, a Chinese idol survival show judged by former labelmates Kris Wu (of EXO) and Victoria Song (of f(x)). Yiyang was one of the 6 winners, debuting as a vocalist in Legal High in January 2019.

However, Legal High ceased activity within just a few months. This year, 22-year-old Yiyang joined another Chinese survival show, Produce Camp 2020. Produce Camp was also judged by Kris Wu and Victoria Song, along with other former EXO members Tao and Luhan.

Sadly, Yiyang ranked 8th in the finale last month, just missing the cut for 7-member group BonBon Girls 303.

3. Koeun

Koeun was introduced as a member of SM Rookies in July 2015 at the age of 16. She was expected to be part of the new girl group’s vocal line and once appeared in the “Paper Umbrella” music video by Super Junior’s Yesung.

Koeun left SM Entertainment in February 2020 after training for around 9 years. Now 21 years old, Koeun is yet to announce any activities as an idol or entertainer. Shortly after she left the company, rumors surfaced that she may have joined Big Hit Entertainment’s new girl group, headed by former SM Entertainment creative director Min Hee Jin. However, nothing has been confirmed.

| @letsgoeunn/Instagram

4. Lami

Lami was introduced as a member of SM Rookies in December 2013 at the age of just 10 years old. She began her career as a child actor at the age of 9, appearing in Mickey Mouse Club, K-Dramas like A Wife’s Credentials, and thriller movie Montage. Lami was also a model, appearing in a CF for Doosang Donga.

Lami left SM Entertainment in February 2020. Like Koeun, Lami (currently aged 17, real name Lee Sung Kyung) does not have any activities on the cards right now. Those who follow SM Rookies noticed she recently changed her Instagram account to an Artist account, so many expect she may return to acting or modelling in the future.

Lami (left) and Koeun (right) recently appeared on Instagram Live together. | @bible_030303/Instagram