Progression, the grand prize winner of Malaysia’s Korean Wave Contest (KWC), is popular in the local kpopped circuit. They’ve even performed for Korea Tourism Organization at a recent travel fair.
Formed in 2008, the 13-member group selected 6 of its best dancers to compete in KWC.
Joel Tee (21), Lee Chun Ming (17) & Lau Jian Han (17)
So how did the dance group get together? “We are all from the same high school in Pahang,” said Joel Tee, the group’s leader. “I’m the eldest and I’m also their high school senior.
“After college, I looked for people who had interest in dance, especially to TVXQ songs. I found out that a few of my former high school juniors had the potential and interest so I took them in and trained them,” revealed the 21 year old.
Joel’s love for kpop was so influential that his juniors eventually came to appreciate kpop as well. “That’s why we’re here today,” he quipped.
Hailing from Mentakab, Pahang (a state north of the capital city of Kuala Lumpur) the boys could only practice together for KWC from Friday to Sunday.
“After the audition, we only had 4 weeks left to prepare for the final. Two of my members are studying in a college in KL, so we could only practice together on the weekends,” Joel added.
As Progression’s leader, Joel takes responsibility for the group’s performance. For KWC, he choreographed some original dance moves for the team.
“I just did my best to create something new. Up till today, Progression has only followed other people’s dances. But for KWC, I knew we needed something fresh so I created and choreographed some of the moves myself. However, my teammates did give their comments and suggestions for the routine.”
(Watch the winning performance below)
As the grand prize winners of KWC, the boys bagged 5 tour packages to South Korea and tickets to Nanta in Malaysia (Zone A).
Uh-huh, do the math. Someone isn’t going to Korea. Who could it possibly be?
“Xiao Bang’s parents aren’t keen on letting him travel overseas,” Joel said when contacted a few days later. “So the rest of us will be going to Korea. We will “compensate” him for his participation though…it’s something we agreed upon in a meeting.”
Congratulations, Progression and have fun in Korea! We hope to see you on stage again…soon!
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KWC is a competition inspired by the rise of the Hallyu in Malaysia. It pits Kpop-influenced talents against each other for prizes and the opportunity to get noticed. It is organized by Korea Tourism Organization.
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