Grab the mic and practice that choreography, the original Broadway cast recording of KPOP officially drops May 12. Originally announced to drop February 24, the album from Sony Masterworks Broadway fittingly coincides with the Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, which occurs annually each May. The musical features music, lyrics, music production and arrangements by Helen Park, and music and lyrics by Max Vernon. Music producer Harvey Mason, Jr. is producing the album.
Recently nominated for three Tony Awards including Best Original Score, Best Choreography, and Best Costume Design, the musical follows fictional K-pop girl group RTMIS, boy band F8, and solo artist MwE. Set to perform as part of a marketing campaign for their music label—one of the biggest in the Korean pop industry—as it looks to expand. But they face a variety of personal and cultural challenges that threaten their dreams and careers, and the label's plans.
Ahead of the drop, the musical has released a series of performance videos ahead of the drop.
Watch "Superstar" below.
Park added, “Working on the songs for KPOP for the past 8 years was pure joy and a huge honor for me. Being able to bring a piece of my culture onto the Broadway stage was already a surreal experience, but to share that with the global audience through this album is an absolute dream come true. I hope listeners can feel the joy and love that went into creating the songs, and feel welcomed into the world of KPOP."
The Broadway bow starred BoHyung, Amy Keum, Kate Mina Lin, Min, Julia Abueva, Luna, John Yi, Kevin Woo, Eddy Lee, Joshua Lee, Abraham Lim, James Kho, Jiho Kang, Zachary Noah Piser, Marina Kondo, Lina Rose Lee, Major Curda, Jinwoo Jung, Jully Lee, Timothy H. Lee, Aubie Merrylees, and Patrick Park.
Watch "Amerika (Checkmate)" below.
With Teddy Bergman at the helm, KPOP began previews at Circle in the Square Theatre October 13, and opened November 17. It ran through December 11. The production featured choreography by Jennifer Weber, music direction by Sujin Kim-Ramsey, scenic design by Gabriel Hainer Evansohn, costume design by Clint Ramos and Sophia Choi, lighting designer Jiyoun Chang, sound designers Peter Fitzgerald and Andrew Keister, projection design by Peter Nigrini, hair and wig design by Mia M. Neal, and makeup designer Suki Tsujimoto. Cherie B. Tay served as production stage manager, and casting was by Tara Rubin Casting.
Watch "Supergoddess" below.
The show's abrupt end followed public discord between the show's company and New York Times theatre critic Jesse Green, whose negative review was described by KPOP's producers as "casual racism." KPOP struggled at the box office throughout its run, both before and after Green's review was published.
Conceived by Jason Kim and the Woodshed Collective, KPOP features a book by Kim; music, lyrics, music production and arrangements by Helen Park; and music and lyrics by Max Vernon. It first opened Off-Broadway for its 2017 world premiere at Ars Nova. Ma-Yi Theater and the Woodshed Collective also contributed to bringing KPOP to the stage, and the musical ultimately took home three Lucille Lortel Awards (including Outstanding Musical), the 2018 Richard Rodgers Award, and an Off Broadway Alliance Award for Best Unique Theatrical Experience.