Sriya Lenka: India’s first K-Pop Idol
It’s a proud moment for India as Shreya Lenka has been chosen to be a part of the globally-renowned K-Pop band Blackswan. The 18-year-old from Odisha’s Rourkela becomes India’s first and only K-Pop artist ever.
Shreya, who adopted the stage name Sriya, is the fifth member to join the band alongside Youngheun, Fatou, Judy and Leia. Sriya was selected along with Brazilian Gabriela Dalcin (Gabi) the sixth member of the band, by a programme organised by DR Music (Blackswan’s music label) to discover and train budding singers from around the world.
Sriya and Gabi were selected for the band after participating in the six-month-long global auditions that were announced by DR Music last year. As part of their training, which started in December 2021, both artists had to work on their Korean language, dancing and vocal skills. Sriya recalls her tryst with destiny and her big achievement in an interview with VERUS FERREIRA.
Congratulations, Sriya, on this great milestone. So tell us, when they announced you’d be part of Blackswan, how did you feel?
I felt really happy when I saw my name in the newspaper. I feel very proud and happy to see my name everywhere. I have achieved something, but I want to continue achieving and progressing. My journey has just started, and it’s going to be a long one.
You are now part of the K-Pop industry in Seoul. But your love for music was from childhood. From Indian music to K-Pop? How did that happen?
It was quite unexpected for me, but I got introduced to K-Pop by one of my friends. Over time, my interest in K-Pop grew a lot. I wanted to perform. I wanted to try those things, by watching videos and clips, and my interest grew further. The first groups that made me feel like that in the K-Pop industry were EXO and BTS.
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Verus Ferreira is a freelance music journalist for over three decades, contributing articles to various newspapers and magazines. He is the author of The Great Music Quiz Book and The Great Rock Music Quiz Book. Besides being a music aficionado, he is also a photo-journalist. He contributes to Musicunplugged.in. Reach him at E: firstname.lastname@example.org or verusferreira.com