Japan for the Uninvited

Japanese culture from a bemused foreign perspective


BoA (real name Kwon Boa) is the ultimate manufactured pop product. She was recruited by Korean promotion giant SM Entertainment when she was 11, with the explicit intention of creating an internationally-recognisable Korean pop idol.

This painstaking process included intensive English and Japanese lessons (she’s fluent in both) as well as the usual training in singing and dancing.

At 19, she was one of the most popular artists in Asia, and looked set to start her assault on the US market.

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