ELLE Exclusive: In Conversation With OMEGA X’s Hangyeom On His Acting Debut, New Music & More

Photo Credit: IPQ

When we think of BLs (Boy Love), we think of Thai or Japanese BL dramas, webtoons, and mangas. But over the years, Korean BLs, much like Thai BLs, have been making space in people’s watchlists with their growing popularity while establishing themselves in the Asian BL scene. One of the major factors behind their success is the star cast, the Korean BL makers have selected some of the most fan favourite idols to bring the characters to life.

And this time we have Hangyeom, from the popular K-pop group OMEGA X member, making his debut as an actor in the recently released Korean BL drama Jazz for Two, which is based on a well-known BL webtoon of the same title. He is playing one of the lead characters, Suh Do-yoon, a student at Wooyeon Arts School. In 2017, the original webtoon peaked at number one on Lezhin Comics‘ BL webtoon chart. The plot centers on the difficulties and demands placed on four high school students who attend an arts school. There, by music and love, they grow up and realise who they really are.


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ELLE sat with the star to talk about his experience on the set, making music for the show and much more.

ELLE: K-dramas are a massive phenomenon around the globe, especially in India and other countries. How do you feel about making your debut in such a vast industry?

Hangyeom: I actually had many worries since this was my first try at acting. I had many script-reading sessions with the director, Song Su-lim, to provide stable assistance for all the staff members and my colleague actors. Also, my Omega X bandmates JAEHAN and HYUK helped me a lot by practicing some scenes together. Kim Jung-ha, who played the role of Joo-ha, is the same age as me! He treated me very comfortably as a friend while providing advice and great help in terms of acting. I’m thrilled to be able to wrap up the filming well, thanks to all the help from many people!

ELLE: How was your experience in creating the original soundtrack for the show as it fell on the musical radar?

Hangyeom: First of all, I am very happy to participate in the original soundtrack of the drama I starred in. When working on a soundtrack, there is not much knowledge about when and what situation this track would be used for in the drama. Therefore, it was interesting to hear different tracks used throughout the drama and match each track to a specific scene. One behind-the-scenes story is that I had to finish recording the original soundtrack before leaving for Omega X’s U.S. tour last year, so I remember recording until the morning after finishing practice for the tour. On top of that, I had to monitor the mixing process and the master version while we were on tour, so that was a bit challenging. But overall, I was overwhelmed with joy to know that the songs I’ve worked so hard on will be used in Jazz for Two.

Enjoying Asian BL — Song Han Gyeom as Seo Do Yoon in Jazz For Two...

ELLE: Acting or singing, which comes more naturally to you?

Hangyeom: I’ve been doing music much longer than acting, so singing seems more natural to me. But I’ll definitely feel more natural acting too, so please look forward to that version of Song Hangyeom!

Enjoying Asian BL — Jazz For Two (Opening Title Video) | Hangyeom

ELLE: What was your pre-shoot ritual like, as shooting for a show can be a bit overwhelming sometimes?

Hangyeom: Our filming always happened in a great atmosphere, so honestly, I don’t think there were many situations where I felt nervous or pressured. That’s why I didn’t have a particular ritual that I recall, but I do remember feeling extra nervous for emotional scenes with Joo-ha since those were crucial to the storyline. Instead of doing any special ritual, I tried to loosen up and focus on those scenes by going through multiple rehearsals with Kim Jung-ha (who played the role of Joo-ha).

Enjoying Asian BL — Song Han Gyeom as Seo Do Yoon in Jazz For Two...

ELLE: How was your overall experience shooting with a new team and a director who had worked with your bandmates earlier?

Hangyeom: I was able to understand each scene better and gain many ideas on how I should act, thanks to director Song Su-lim’s direct and passionate advice. Also, there was a part where I tried an ad-lib, and she complimented me by saying it was funny, so I was really happy. With the other actors, I did multiple script-readings and practices, which helped us get close in a short time. It also helped us have fun while filming, just like real friends. We’re still staying close by talking to each other often.

Enjoying Asian BL — Song Han Gyeom as Seo Do Yoon in Jazz For Two...

ELLE: What are the three things fans should expect while watching the show?

Hangyeom: With the background of the arts high school, four students are going through various emotions and stories on their journey to one goal of playing jazz together. I believe such elements provided interest and joy in watching the drama. I hope you’ll focus on the change of emotions among the four students. Each student has his own secret, and I think it’ll also be interesting to guess what that secret is while watching the drama. Last but not least, I can’t miss pointing out our visuals!


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ELLE: Lastly, as queer representation is a sensitive topic in South Korea, how do you think your show fits into it?

Hangyeom: Personally, I believe more people in Korea will pay attention to queer culture and representation over time, as many people are already interested and passionate about the subject. What I am hoping is that Jazz for Two will bring much enjoyment to the community and other viewers who watched the drama.

Photo Credit: IPQ

Also, read: In Conversation With The New Gen Z K-pop Group On The Block, ‘POW’

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ELLE Exclusive: K-Pop Star AleXa Talks About Her New Single ‘Sick’ And Upcoming World Tour

- Digital Writer


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