In the July 13 SBS Plus show, “Are you eating well?” 2 a.m Jo Kwon opened up about his difficult childhood, fighting as an idol and much more.
Jo Kwon, who made his debut 13 years ago, talked about what has been bothering him recently as an artist. He said, “After I was released from the military, I thought I wanted to live like my real self, not the way the public wanted it.”
He revealed that he had hard times when he was younger. “When I was in fifth grade, we went bankrupt because of my parents’ debts,” said Jo Kwon. “We lived in a single room. In my childhood, music was my only escape from poverty. We lived on 60,000 won (about $ 49.98) a month. “
Jo Kwon said his parents had accumulated approximately 500 million won (approximately $ 416,500) in debt. He said, “When I was 12, creditors searched our house, collected water in a bucket, and slapped my mother in the face with the water. She doesn’t have an eardrum now. “Jo Kwon expressed his shock when he saw his mother was being attacked and admitted that it had become an emotional scar for him.
He tore open and remembered a time when his mother was thrown onto the asphalt by the creditors when she tried to see Jo Kwon on the way to school, causing her jaw to break.
In 2000, Jo Kwon appeared on a young talent TV show with the founder of JYP Entertainment, Park Jin Young. Jo Kwon revealed that he had secretly auditioned for the show. He said his mother was very worried about him at first, but later even accompanied him to the finals for the second round of auditions.
Although Jo Kwon became increasingly popular after appearing on the show, he admitted that the following life as an apprentice was not easy. “I held out as an apprentice for eight years,” he said. “The hardest part of my trainee days was that there was no guarantee [of debuting]and I felt a lot of pressure that I could be hurt if I wasn’t good enough. There was constant pressure to stay with the company as a trainee as assessments were made every month. “
He continued: “I have spent these eight years feeling anxious and under pressure and I thought I had to hurry and make my debut to support my family.”
Jo Kwon also said that he received income only three years after his debut. He said he was busy paying the fees for his eight-year apprenticeship. When things didn’t get better after the debut, Jo Kwon announced that he even wanted to withdraw from the industry.
However, Jo Kwon decided to hold on and said that he could finally buy a new house for his parents. He said: “To be able to give my parents a comfortable house makes me happiest.”
Then Jo Kwon spoke about who he is as an artist. He said, “I’m just thinking of wanting to live the way I am and something that awakens another person in me is high heels.”
He continued: “One day, Bang Si Hyuk asked me if this is something the public wants to see from me or if it is something I really want to do. I said I want to do what I want to do and he told me a few weeks later that he saw a pair of high heels that would suit me well. “Jo Kwon said that Bang Si Hyuk finally gave him his first pair of high heels.
Jo Kwon added: “I gained confidence and dignity that was as high as the heels, and I felt that was why I became a singer.”
Jo Kwon also revealed that his mother was diagnosed with melanoma while Jo Kwon served in the military. He said: “It spread from her big toe and it was inevitable that she would have to get an amputation. My heart sank from the sudden news after I joined the army. “
Later Jo Kwon’s mother made a special appearance. She set about feeling sorry for her son during his childhood. She commented, “The day Jo Kwon auditioned, I thought he had met the wrong parents and I cried alone in the bathroom for a long time.”
She continued: “When I saw Jo Kwon’s debut stage, I cried for a long time in the audience. I was so proud of my son.”
Jo Kwon’s mother then said to him: “My son, whom I have saved in my telephone contacts as ‘Mama’s treasure’, my son, whom I have born and brought up with difficulty – I pray that you will no longer be emotionally hurt. ”
Jo Kwon replied, “As you have always done, I hope you trust my path and I want to be a son who is forever reliable and sometimes like a daughter, as well as a friend-like son.”
Watch Jo Kwon in the following drama “The Queen of the Office”:
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