Can you spot them all?
15 Aug 2018 - 1:13 PM  UPDATED 15 Aug 2018 - 1:13 PM

When K-pop idols are trainees, it's pretty common for their agencies to use them as back-up dancers in senior artists' music videos. It's a great opportunity for them to practice their skills and get exposure, plus it keeps it all in the family.

Many of these dancers end up debuting in groups of their own, and it's always fun to go back and spot the idols pre-debut.

Check out some of the idols who were back-up dancers first!

Monsta X's Shownu

Before he debuts, Shownu was one of Hyori's dancers for "Bad Girls", even getting some time in the spotlight with the singer.

BTS' JK & J-Hope

BTS members feature as back up dancers in a couple of Jo Kwon's music videos and live performances (J-Hope is even a guest rapper on "Animal"). 

EXO's Lay

A testament to Lay's talents, years before debut he was a back-up dancer for SHINee at their concerts. He's the guy in the shirt with a red X on it in the video below.


The now debuted idol was the main male dancer in former KARA member Goo Hara's single "Choco Chip Cookie" live stages.

Wanna One's Daniel & Jisung

Fiestar's Cao Lu and SPICA's Sihyun collaborated for a tv show on a performance of Uhm Jung Hwa's "Invitation", and if you have a look at the back-up dancers, under all that hair are Kang Daniel and Jisung from their pre-Produce 101 days!

Monsta X's Wonho

Another Monsta X member who was a back-up dancer before debut, Wonho appeared in live stages with Sistar including this one for "Ma Boy" (look at the far left!).


Everyone starts from somewhere, even one of the biggest names in K-pop ever. BIGBANG had their time as trainee back-up dancers, performing for Se7en at his solo concerts.


Pre-debut CLC and PENTAGON members were both back-up dancers for former Cube Entertainment artist G.NA on her single "Secret".

VIXX's N & Leo

VIXX members did their fair share of back-up dancing before debut, including live stages with 2PM. Try and spot N and Leo at around the 3.15 mark in this video.


Another example of an entertainment agency having their trainees as back-up dancers, all the members of NU'EST along with SEVENTEEN's leader S Coups featured in the background of fellow Pledis Entertainment group Afterschool BLUE's "Wonder Boy".


WINNER and iKON have a long history as trainees, ranging from YG's reality show MIX & MATCH, through to often being put together collectively for YG senior artist projects. Case in point: their back-up dancing on GDragon's hit solo song "Crooked".

What are some other back up dancers you know, who are now K-pop idols?

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