A simple and brief history and introduction to Dreamcatcher.
(Disclaimer: Please keep in mind that while all pertinent info, like dates, places, names, personal info, etc are factual, this is still an opinion piece written by a fan and should be treated as such, as my affection for this group will be evident in some comments and descriptions. Information was gathered from various sources, these will be linked at the end of the article.)
Dreamcatcher is a seven member female group from South Korea under production company Happy Face Entertainment. Members consist of (from left to right in above photo) Sua, Gahyeon, Siyeon, JiU, Yoohyeon, Dami and Handong. They are known for going outside what may be considered the standard or trending themes and styles of most Korean girl groups, choosing to debut (and continue with) a darker horror concept, and rather than an electronic or “pop” feel, their use of pop vocals over a rock and metal instrumental certainly sets them apart and makes them stand out, making them the first girl group in Korea to do so as a base concept rather than a one off track. To better understand the group, and the members, we actually need to go back a couple years to where their story actually starts, with the five member girl group Minx…
After the success of their first group Dal Shabet, Happy Face Ent. debuted their next girl group Minx in 2014 with the single “Why Did You Come to My Home” and another original song “Action”. With the success of those tracks members JiU, Dami, Yoohyeon, Siyeon, and Sua made their entrance into the world of K-Pop. A comeback in 2015 brought their first EP “Love Shake” with lead song of same name, a remake of a song originally done by their sister group (Dal Shabet).
In November of 2016 Happy Face Ent. announced that they would be pulling Minx and that a re-debut for the girls would be coming in 2017 with the addition of two new members, Handong and Gahyeon. On January 13th 2017 (a Friday, of course) Dreamcatcher debuted with their first single album “Nightmare” with it’s lead track “Chase Me”. They had their official debut stage on M-Countdown on January 19th. With amazingly powerful vocals and technical dancing ability displayed by all members, along with the high production quality and theory inducing first MV, the ladies were off to an amazing start.
Showing no sign of slowing down, they had their first comeback in short notice. In April of 2017 with their second single album “Fall Asleep in the Mirror” with it’s title track “Good Night”, continuing the horror concept and the rock/metal instrumentals, as well as yet another technically complex dance choreography. Just a couple months later in July they released their first EP as Dreamcatcher called Prequel, with it’s title track “Fly High” along with six other original tracks. The album debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard World Albums Chart and peaked at No. 1 on the US iTunes K-Pop Top 100 Chart. One month later in August Happy Face announced that Dreamcatcher would be taking their first world tour after the promotion for Prequel was ended. These girls had come out swinging and were only just getting started.
As the end of there first year came closer, Happy Face announced on December 8th that they would be adding 7 European countries/cities to the world tour, and on the 28th announced that they would be holding a fan meeting on January 13th, so they could celebrate their first anniversary with fans. With which they made several news reports by selling out of all 400 tickets in less than one minute of opening sales on Jan 2nd. Not to bad of a first year, if I must say so. These girls had shown not just what they had to offer but how hard they were willing to fight and work to make their own dreams a reality. And the next year would start of with an event just as memorable…
On January 4th 2018, Happy Face announced that Dreamcatcher would be releasing a new single, “Full Moon”, written for and dedicated to, their fans, and to quote the group “in commemoration of the memories forged between Dreamcatcher and fans”. The song was officially released on Jan. 12th and the accompanying video continued the story of their “Nightmare” trilogy (and also at the end teased a comeback date in March of 2018). The following day, January 13th, they held their much anticipated 1 year anniversary fan meeting, where they also performed the Full Moon live stage for the first time, just for their fans.
In February of 2018, they became the first Korean girl group to complete a major tour of European cities, performing and interacting with their international fans. When in London, group leader JiU remarked: “It was our goal to go on a world tour before our debut. We had no idea that we would be able to go on a Europe tour so soon in our career.”
Then in March of 2018, Dreamcatcher fans everywhere were greeted by a long awaited and anticipated announcement…
Dreamcatcher announced the official fan name would be “inSomnia”. Fans were told that the name was Latin, meaning “In Dreams”…sounds simple, right..well, that’s where one of the best qualities of these girls (in my opinion) comes into play. Rather than a fan name picked at random, or one that just “sounded cool” or picked by the company for good marketing potential, the girls picked it to make sure that fans understood how much they were thinking about them and how much they cared about them. On the surface it seems simple, “in Dreams”(and this translation coming about by combining the English version of “in” with the Latin “Somnias”, showing an example of common Korean trends of intermixing English into lyrics) being related to dream-catchers, but we go one step further and it relates as well to the fact their debut concept had them portraying 7 Nightmares from Korean folklore…but, again in my personal opinion, it goes much deeper than that (more on this inside the site in the Document Library).
Two months later, May 10th to be exact, Dreamcatcher released their second mini album “Escape the Era” with it’s lead track of “You and I”, and five more original tracks, as a finale(?) of the Nightmare series.
May 17th brought the announcement of their ‘Welcome to the Dream World in Latin America’ tour, that started July 27th in Buenos Aries and wrapped up in Panama City on August 5th.
And of course, throughout all this there have been there various covers and solo pieces (Cover of Maroon 5’s “Lucky Strike”( full group), Winner’s “Really, Really” (Sua, Siyeon and Yoohyeon), Lil’ Mix’s “Secret Love Song” (Yoohyeon solo), “Faded” by Alan Walker (Siyeon) , (and many more, all are amazing and worth tracking down to see.) and an abundance of random videos and pictures by the girls, just to let fans know they are thinking of them.
And of course, (a little over a month ago, at the time of this writing) they made their first U.S. appearance in California at KCon LA. This was an extra special event for many reasons (most will be covered in later sections) one of the main ones being that they not only performed 2 special stages for the Con, but also had a fan meeting/signing afterward, which is a rarity in the US for K-pop groups as it is. What was amazing was that it was made possible by fans…all those who supported the idea, yes, but especially by the group of people at 7 Dreamers. These fans went above and beyond, organizing the event to make sure it would happen. (more info on their page).
A lot of fan meetings, signings, special events and shows, not to mention a lot of videos posted to show their their love for inSomnias later, and we arrive at a most awaited and anticipated day, September 20th, 2018. Dreamcatcher comes back with an amazing collection of songs, leading with title track “What”. Showing off not just the great rock/metal instrumentals we have come to love, but in the style of a hard rock ballad, they show an amazing maturity, not just in their vocals and videos, but in the overall concept as well.
To go along with the new album, and all the amazing videos to come with it, fans will also be treated to a new custom photo-book by the members, as their MyMusicTaste fundraiser for the book surpassed the needed goal by over 400% more than needed, and that was within the first month.
2018 also saw some of the greatest live performances by the ladies (again, this is in my opinion, but it’s true. 🙂 ) The two most memorable ones for me were their live stage performance of Big Bang’s “Bang, bang, bang” All the girls were amazing of course, and they nailed the dance and vocals, and seeing them all in torn jeans and leather jackets, made my heart stop I think.
The two most stand out parts of this performance, for me, were one: Gahyeon trying her gosh darnedest to look tough and bad (she’s just too adorable) and two: Dami…just everything Dami. Right from the beginning you knew that although they were all gonna rock this performance, this was Dami’s show. From the moment she moved into the center, and looked out over the crowd, you knew she was in charge, and then those deep smooth vocals come out, and it’s over, and your heart stops. 🙂
Our next big moment, and lets be honest, it’s a big moment for any group, was our girls first appearance on the Korean show Immortal Songs 2. Immortal Songs is a type of variety/talent competition, where several groups perform classic kpop songs, adding their own twist and style to it. The audience then judges the performances and determines who goes on to the next round. the show does seem to be focused more on an older audience, those that grew up with the original songs, it makes it nice to see these older fans getting into and cheering on these younger generation artists, and to see the artists having fun performing these classic songs.
That said, it was a pretty big deal, Dreamcatcher being invited to the show (Yes, contestants are asked to perform on the show, rather than audition), not just for being a younger group, but being of a completely different style than other groups involved.
Suffice it to say, you knew it was gonna be amazing when it started with them all wearing older fashions and Siyeon starting it off with her amazing vocals, and even keeping it in her lower range.
And then one of the things they do best, the choreo starts. Then in typical Dreamcatcher fashion, they bust out in a rock version of the song! The performance is just amazing, watch the video and see for yourself.
Which brings us to some major events of early 2019. Dreamcatcher starts off strong with the release of a single to promote the upcoming album (Because of course these girls don’t know the meaning of taking a break) And delivered us the powerful song ‘Over the Sky’
After the regular release of teasers and the exciting medley teaser for the album, on February 13th we were given the release of their ‘End of Nightmare’ album with it’s title track ‘PIRI’. An amazing song featuring their great rock sound, this time accompanied by a whistle tune representative of the same named double reed instrument.
This album would represent Dreamcatcher finally bringing the “Nightmare” story-line to a close, the concept having begun since their debut with ‘Chase Me’.
As if to help show not only their support to the group, but also that even more great things were to come, Happy Face Ent. officially changed their name to Dreamcatcher Company on the same day of the albums release.
The girls then began their Asia Tour to promote the album, called ‘Invitation from Nightmare City’, The girls will be traveling to multiple cities – Jakarta, Manila, Singapore, Seoul itself, as well as Japanese cities Tokyo and Kobe, with the tour ending in May.
During this tour, Dreamcatcher, and all of us InSomnia’s, were given a great surprise, as they were invited to come back to Immortal Songs 2 to perform and compete again. And again they were amazing, and looked like they were having so much fun with it, and the audience reception of it was just amazing. Again, just watch for yourself. 🙂
And there you go, a brief recap of Dreamcatcher, at least from my point of view. Next we’ll have a brief introduction to each member, from oldest to youngest.
First up, we have JiU:
Stage Name: JiU (지유)
Birth Name: Kim Min-ji (김민지)
Position: Leader, Lead Vocalist, Lead Dancer,
Birthday: May 17, 1994
Zodiac Sign: Taurus
Height: 170 cm (5’7″)
Blood Type: B
Some JiU Facts:
Born in Daejeon, South Korea.
One of the 5 members originally in MINX.
She has cute reactions and also can do expressive acting with her face.
She likes Baby Metal.
She does aerobics to relieve stress.
Next we have Sua:
Stage Name: SuA (수아)
Birth Name: Kim Bo Ra (김보라)
Position: Main Dancer, Lead Rapper, Vocalist
Birthday: August 10, 1994
Zodiac Sign: Leo
Height: 162 cm (5 ft 3¾ in)
Blood Type: O
Some SuA Facts:
Born in Changwon, South Korea.
One of the 5 members originally in MINX.
Competed in a B-girl competition
Was in training the longest out of the members before debut.
Has the smallest hands and feet among the members.
Her hobbies are drawing and watching dramas.
Next, here’s Siyeon:
Stage Name: Siyeon (시연)
Birth Name: Lee Si-yeon (이시연)
Position: Main Vocalist
Birthday: October 1, 1995
Zodiac Sign: Libra
Height: 168 cm (5’6″)
Blood Type: A
Some Siyeon facts:
Born in Daegu, South Korea.
One of the 5 members originally in MINX.
Can do impressions of Pikachu, Squirtle, and Psyduck.
Favorite color is blue.
Dislikes shrimp and making mistakes.
Was a participant on the YG survival show MIXNINE. (Ranked 97th before leaving the contest early to perform at their concert in Brazil)
Next up, we have Handong:
Stage Name: Handong (한동)
Birth Name: Han Dong (韓東)
Birthday: March 26, 1996
Zodiac Sign: Aries
Height: 165 cm (5’5″)
Blood Type: O
Some Handong Facts:
She was born in Wuhan, China.
Yoohyeon’s nickname (and now everyone’s) for Handong is Dongdong.
Appeared in a musical during high school.
Likes to eat chocolate but sneezes when she eats it.
Would like her Korean name to be Kim Han Dong.
Received training in Opera singing.
Yoohyeon is up next:
Stage Name: Yoohyun (유현)
Birth Name: Kim Yoo-hyeon (김유현)
Position: Lead Vocalist
Birthday: January 7, 1997
Zodiac Sign: Capricorn
Height: 171 cm (5’7″)
Blood Type: O
Some Yoohyeon Facts:
Born in Incheon, South Korea.
One of the 5 members originally in MINX.
English name is Rachel.
Teeth get itchy when she’s nervous.
Learning Mandarin and German.
Loves to play video games.
Was a participant on the YG survival show MIXNINE. (Ranked 96th before leaving the contest early to perform in Brazil)
Last, but certainly not least we have Gahyeon:
Stage Name: Gahyeon (가현)
Birth Name: Lee Ga-hyeon (이가현)
Position: Vocalist, Maknae
Birthday: February 3, 1999
Zodiac Sign: Aquarius
Height: 164 cm (5’5″)
Blood Type: AB
Some Gahyeon Facts:
Born in Seongnam, South Korea.
Was a honor student for 3 years.
Received several awards of recognition in Mathematics during her schooling.
Loves making seaweed soup.
Can imitate Sponge Bob’s laugh.
So there we go, some basics on each member. Of course this is just the bare minimum, there is so much to love about them that I would never be able to get it all down here. Thankfully, there is a large collection of guides and interviews and videos etc. on them (a lot of which you will find inside the site in the video library).