HYBE x Geffen Records has revealed the final six members of the unprecedented global girl group as a result of “The Debut: Dream Academy” audition program: Daniela (USA), Yoonchae (South Korea), Lara (USA), Sophia (Philippines), Manon (Switzerland), Megan (USA). The group name, KATSEYE, was also unveiled. The announcement took place at a live event in Los Angeles and was live streamed simultaneously on HYBE LABELS YouTube Channel (Global), Weverse (Global), and ABEMA (Japan). During the finale, viewers watched the top 10 contestants’ final group performances where they each debuted an original and exclusive song: “Dirty Water”, “Girls Don’t Like”, and “All The Same”.
Click HERE to watch “The Debut: Dream Academy” – Live Finale.
For “Dirty Water” and “Girls Don’t Like, the 10 finalists were split into two groups of 5. They showcased not only their dancing and singing abilities, but also how they have grown as artists from their experience in The Dream Academy. These were the last performances that the remaining contestants were evaluated on.
“All The Same” was performed by all 10 finalists. Set against a dream-like and ethereal backdrop that compliments the song’s overall feel, the contestants exhibited unity and sisterhood, vocally supporting one another and through intricate and contemporary choreography. This song marks both the beginning and the end of their Dream Academy journey, as “All The Same” originally debuted in the art film that was presented at the press event where “The Debut: Dream Academy” was announced.
The name of the group, KATSEYE, was revealed at the finale as well. Feminine, powerful, and unique, KATSEYE perfectly encompasses each member of this unprecedented girl group. A semiprecious stone, cat’s eye shows off a variety of colors depending on its direction, much like the final members who are all different in their cultural backgrounds, but united as one under KATSEYE, glowing powerfully together. Cat’s eye gemstones are also used as a “lucky charm” bringing peace, success, and good fortune for a lifetime.
The final lineup of contestants was determined by a combination of early votes and real-time votes during the live finale, as well as evaluators’ scores. The early voting period began last Friday, November 10th at 8am PT and ended on November 17th at 7:59am PT. Fans cast their votes on Weverse and were able to vote for up to 3 contestants per day. The real-time voting period during the live finale will also take place on Weversefrom 7:00pm PT – 7:30pm PT on November 17th.
Music industry powerhouses HYBE and Geffen Records recently revealed the 20 contestants from around the world who competed for a spot in the first-ever HYBE x Geffen Records global girl group. The one-of-a-kind joint venture marks the first time a major U.S. record label and a K-pop entertainment leader have combined their expertise in artist discovery and music production to assemble, develop, and introduce an international girl group unlike any other. This also notably represents the first time a U.S.-based, truly global girl group will be created and modeled based on the world-renowned K-pop training and development system, under which the contestants have been quietly training over the last year in Los Angeles. The aspiring artists participated in a world-class audition program titled “The Debut: Dream Academy”, and fans have been following the contestants on their journey. The years-long process of creating this one-of-a-kind girl group will be the subject of an upcoming untitled Netflix documentary series, directed by Nadia Hallgren (Becoming). The series produced by HYBE, Interscope Films and Boardwalk Pictures is set to premiere in Summer 2024.
Bang Si-Hyuk (Chairman of HYBE) said, "This has been a long journey and an unprecedented collaboration between HYBE and Geffen. We are very proud of the results and of all the contestants who joined us in this project. We wish KATSEYE much success as we are sure they will inspire fans across the globe."
John Janick (Chairman & CEO, IGA) states, “It has been so inspiring to see the dedication each of these incredible artists has brought to this process,” said John Janick, Chairman and CEO of Interscope Geffen A&M. “For the new members of KATSEYE, I truly believe there are no limits to what they can accomplish together.”
“The Debut: Dream Academy” global girl group audition program was comprised of three missions where the contestants were split into groups to showcase their vocal and dance abilities (mission announcement video here). The performance videos aired on HYBE LABELS YouTube Channel (Global) and ABEMA (Japan) and allowed fans to follow the journey and familiarize themselves with the contestants and their talents. After each mission, fans voted via Weverse and YouTube for their favorite contestants (voting info here). Alongside fan voting, a panel of experienced evaluators offer valuable feedback and guidance to the contestants, playing an essential role in shaping the growth and development of these talented young women.
The focus of Mission #1 was to level up their skills and demonstrate their ability to support one another as team members through their individual performances. After Mission #1, two participants were eliminated, and the remaining 18 contestants flew to Korea to prep for Mission #2, which took place at HYBE’s world-renowned Training & Development (T&D) facility where so many iconic K-Pop stars have trained. Mission #2’s focus was to enhance the contestants’ artistry and teamwork beyond basic individual skills. Four more girls were eliminated after Mission #2 after which the remaining contestants flew back to Los Angeles for Mission #3 where the focus was to demonstrate artistry while executing various musical concepts. The third elimination solidified the top 10 contestants who performed at the November 17th finale event. Performance videos from all three missions can be viewed here.
Following “The Debut: Dream Academy” – Live Finale, KATSEYE will begin working on their forthcoming album, which will be released in 2024. Additionally, the three original and exclusive songs that debuted at the finale event, “Dirty Water”, “Girls Don’t Like”, and “All The Same”, are available now on YouTube.
Photo credit: HYBE x Geffen Records
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Follow “The Debut: Dream Academy”:
About HYBE x Geffen Records:
In February 2021, HYBE (formerly Big Hit Entertainment) and UMG’s Geffen Records officially announced their strategic joint venture partnership — an unprecedented collaboration between an esteemed U.S. record label and the leading K-pop and entertainment lifestyle platform company, brought together to create the world's first U.S.-based, global girl group modeled on the world-renowned K-pop training & development system. This marked the first time a U.S. record label and a K-pop entertainment company were uniting to combine their expertise in artist discovery and development, and music production to assemble, develop, and introduce a group from ground zero. The November 2021 announcement of the first-ever HYBE x Geffen Global Girl Group Audition that followed kicked off the historic JV. Combining HYBE’s global expertise to lead the discovery, training, and development of the group, fan content production processes, and engagement with fans around the world, with Geffen Records' extensive industry network and partners to oversee the music production, marketing, and global distribution operations, the JV aims to debut a new girl group that will transcend national, cultural, and artistic boundaries.
HYBE, rebranded from Big Hit Entertainment in March 2021, is a global entertainment lifestyle platform company that seeks boundless expansion in order to innovate the music industry. Ever since, HYBE has been expanding its multi-label system including BIGHIT MUSIC, BELIFT LAB, SOURCE MUSIC, PLEDIS Entertainment, KOZ ENTERTAINMENT, ADOR, HYBE LABELS JAPAN, NAECO, while HYBE AMERICA also manages its affiliate labels including Big Machine Label Group. In addition to the label business, HYBE established an integrated structure with its solution business that creates concert, video content, game, original story, and retail, as well as a platform business through Weverse, a global fandom platform. Composed of its three headquarters based in Korea, Japan, and the US, the company works towards bringing innovative change throughout the global music industry.
About Interscope Geffen A&M:
Combining the legacies of three of the most influential record labels in modern music history, Interscope Geffen A&M embarked on a new tradition of musical achievement with its unification on January 1, 1999. Headed by Chairman & CEO John Janick, Interscope Geffen A&M is a major force in global music, developing chart-topping artists across a wide range of musical genres including rock, rap, pop and alternative. Interscope Geffen A&M is part of Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company.