What do you get when you put together a group of passionate K-pop students from a variety of backgrounds? An award-winning dance team.
VariAsian placed first at the fifth annual K-Pop Festival in St. Louis earlier this month, beating nine other dance teams.
VariAsian is a Korean pop dance group founded by seven members in spring 2018 and has since had 47 members. They chose the name VariAsian as a variation pun. Not all of their members are Asian.
The group started with several students who really liked K-Pop dancing, said Tianyue Hao, social media manager for VariAsian and junior at the Krannert School of Management.
“They were so great that different organizations asked them to perform for different events,” Hao said. “Because they didn’t have a name and they were people of different origins and races, they just called themselves VariAsian.”
The dance group was able to bond easily from the start. VariAsian is invited by many different organizations to perform and through these campus events they make connections to perform at competitions outside of Purdue.
“Since we’re an Asian organization and we don’t just limit ourselves to Asians, we have people of all different races on our team, so in fact we fit all categories,” Hao said.
“So basically we’ll be invited by the Purdue clubs to play at their events and they’ll get to know us. We don’t just play at Purdue, we perform at other schools and at competitions we connect with them, ”said Danny Chang, VariAsian co-captain and senior at the College of Health and Human Sciences. .
VariAsian does not generally choreograph their own dances. Instead, they learn various dances from famous K-Pop groups and adapt them to their group.
“We mainly focus on K-Pop, and [famous K-Pop groups already] did a dance [to their songs]”Hao said.” We mostly learn it and do our own trainings. In our showcases we have a set of original choreography that encourages people to create their own dance.
One of their main inspirations for their choreography is the K-Pop group Seventeen, Hao said. VariAsian imitates many of their choreographies as they divide their members into groups. Most of Seventeen’s choreography tends to be difficult, Chang said, but practicing these difficult dances helps bring the team together.
“Their name is SEVENTEEN, but they have 13 people,” Chang said. “We always choose their songs because it suits us since we have 13 people in a group. “
VariAsian’s next event will take place on April 23, when the team will have their final showcase. The location has not yet been announced.