Sandara Park (also known as Dara) was the most recent guest on soloist Eric Nam‘s Daebak Show, and during the episode, she opened up about her trainee days, 2NE1‘s promotions, and her solo comeback in 2023.
While discussing her trainee life, Sandara Park opened up more about her journey to becoming a 2NE1 member despite YG Entertainment initially being opposed to her addition to the group.
Before debuting as a member of the legendary 2nd-gen group 2NE1, Sandara Park had been living with her family in the Philippines and had established a singing and acting career after competing on the talent show Star Circle Quest.
The veteran idol explained that she was a big fan of the K-Pop group Fin.K.L as a teenager and was inspired by member Lee Hyori, which fueled her dreams of becoming an idol group member.
When she initially joined YG Entertainment, the company placed focus on her acting activities. Still, Sandara Park admitted she wanted to become a member of 2NE1 instead, whose pre-debut line-up had consisted of Minzy, CL, and Park Bom.
The company told her she “wasn’t a good fit for the team” because they felt her bright pop vocals didn’t match the R&B/hip-hop vibe of YG’s music.
Sandara Park remained consistent in her efforts to prove YG Entertainment wrong. She participated in dance practices and sought vocal tips from BIGBANG‘s G-Dragon.
While she was still a trainee, she was in the recording studio and was mistaken for veteran soloist Uhm Jung Hwa, who was scheduled to record her collaboration track “D.I.S.C.O” with former BIGBANG member T.O.P that day.
She revealed that after the mistake, the company took an interest in her voice, stating they had no interest in it “at all” prior to the mix-up.
Sandara hilariously stated that Uhm Jung Hwa became her “hero” because of that moment, and her love for the iconic idol came full circle when she sampled Uhm Jung Hwa’s 1999 song “FESTIVAL” in 2023.
Check out more on how BIGBANG’s G-Dragon also helped Sandara Park become a member of 2NE1 in the article below!