Michelle Lee‘s interview with Xports News revealed that she was once a victim of discrimination and racism while attending school in Korea, but now, she says it doesn’t bother her anymore.
On March 6, Xports News released an interview with Michelle Lee where the singer and actress spoke about facing discrimination from parents of her school friends while she grew up in Korea. She had once shared the story on KBS‘s Hello Counselor, that a few parents of her own friends would often tell their child, “Don’t touch her, she’s dirty“, purely because the color of her skin was darker than theirs.
Michelle, who is currently appearing on JTBC‘s Tribe of Hip Hop, told Xports News that her optimistic attitude helped her get over the rude remarks, and now she doesn’t care about them anymore.
“There were a lot of articles that came out about that story. But now I don’t care about that stuff and a lot of people around me tell me to have strength. Now they know I’m not pained by it. When I was young, it was difficult for me because of my roots. Even today, there are people who can’t stand seeing me singing in musicals or just singing in general because of the color of my skin. But I don’t hate those people. I just think, ‘They just don’t like me.’ Not everyone can love me, so I stopped caring.”
– Michelle Lee
This isn’t the only time Michelle has shared the stories of her early discrimination. Her song “Without You” reflected how her feelings about her experiences with discrimination have changed over time.
In the first half of the music video, a child who presumably represents Michelle’s childhood is seen drawing on the wall, and writing words that were used to discriminate against her, such as “dirty”, “smelly”, and “blackie”. She then tries to blend into society by using white make-up to lighten her skin tone. In the end, she shows that she’s exhausted with all the discrimination and realizes that she shouldn’t be changing herself to adhere to a standardized form of beauty, and adds color to a black and white portrait of herself.
Michelle is currently starring in the musical Nonsense 2 as a clumsy yet sympathetic character named Sister Herbert.
In regards to her role in the musical, Michelle expressed that she still has a lot to learn and that she is endeavoring to be able to play any role given to her in the future.
“I don’t personally read comments or feedback that much, but since musicals require us to adjust things based on public feedback, I have been reading them nowadays. Thankfully, there aren’t any comments that say the musical was bad because of me (laughs).
I still have a lot to learn. Ultimately, I want to be an actor who can portray any character I play. My goal is to be a person who is perfect for any role. From a crazy and uncontrollable character to a dumb but kind one. One day, I’d also like to aim for a role in a big musical like 42nd Street. I want to experience the thrill people feel when everything is in perfect harmony in a big musical like that.”
– Michelle Lee
Source: Xports News