From an early age, J-Hope knew exactly what he wanted to do with his life, and he began taking the steps that would eventually lead him to BTS.
On October 6, The Fact revealed new details about J-Hope’s predebut days that show his lifelong dedication to dance. When J-Hope was in the 4th grade, he knocked on the door of a Gwangju dance academy after realizing his love for dance. At the time, he was the youngest student training there.
He attended Joy Dance Academy, located on Geumnam-ro street, from ages 10 to 16: a total of 6 years. If “Geumnam-ro” sounds familiar, it may be because J-Hope mentioned it in “Chicken Noodle Soup”.
From Gwangju, one gang of you-know-what
Geum-nam Chung-jang Street, that’s my Harlem
— J-Hope, “Chicken Noodle Soup” (English translation)
Every day, J-Hope traveled more than an hour by bus from school to the dance academy to train. According to The Fact, J-Hope never missed a lesson and he showed outstanding dedication to his craft.
In middle school, J-Hope became the youngest member of a Gwangju dance team, NEURON (also mentioned in “Chicken Noodle Soup”), and he began to make his mark on the local dance scene. J-Hope’s name and skills became known among this community.
According to a representative for J-Hope’s dance academy, once J-Hope got hooked on dance, he gave it his all and never gave up. He never complained about the long commute to the academy, and he would practice until 2 AM many nights.
After midnight, the bus J-Hope needed to take home stopped running, so he would sleep over at a friend’s house, rather than end his practices early.
J-Hope is living proof that with achieving your dreams is possible, so long as you put in the work, the time, the passion, and the persistence needed to make them come true.