[TRANS] Kai @ NYLON Korea September Issue

Trans of Kai’s Interview with NYLON Korea Magazine

Q: Are there any immediate mountains (obstacles) you need to jump over/surpass right now?
A: I always have to surpass myself. Yesterday’s me, no matter what good things happen, I forget them and want to do great things again. Instead of materialistic or physical outcomes, I want to spend time personally accepting and understanding myself. Activities are fun and make me happy, but I’m also happy seeing myself grow day by day. I would like the today’s me to sing better and dance better than yesterday’s me.
Q: Is there an image you want to try today?
A: I really like doing photoshoots. There aren’t any particular ‘images’ I want to try, but I just think that I need to have fun while taking pictures. I like diverse concepts and like whatever pictures needed to be taken, so I want to take a variety of shoots. I don’t do many photoshoots in a year, so I think it’d be fun to keep a record by doing shoots like the “22-year-old Kai” and the “23-year-old Kai,” or capture my everyday like in a photoshoot.

Q: What about a homage to someone you respect? Have you ever thought of becoming something else?
A: I haven’t ever thought about that. I like being comfortable. Just Kai. I like being myself, because I’m always doing strong/intense things on stage.

Q: Would you want to be Kai again i if you were reborn?
A: Yes, because it’s fun. Since I did ballet when I was younger, I had also wanted to be a ballerino, but I think I’ll have to be Kai. However, I’d like to be born as a better Kai.

Q: Since you’re alone here, should we praise the other members or talk badly about them?
A: My first thought was “This is fun!” Compared to the loud and chaotic photoshoots with the members, shooting by myself was quite comfortable. But on the other hand, I began missing the loud chaos and the members quickly.

Q: What do you often observe and from what do you gain influence from?
A: I don’t discriminate; I take influence from a lot of things, even from simply passing by a river. Just now, when I was changing during the shoot, my mask fell, and I thought of a lot of things just from that. I take pride in the ideas that come to me when I listen to music or when I’m alone.

Q: You watch movies and read books often?
A: I mostly read fictional novels, not self-improvement books. They’re boring. I like the fun of imagining when reading fiction. You watch movies, you see the story and what’s visually pre-planned, but you can imagine while reading books. Even if the same characters are portrayed in a novel, I like that each reader sees a different image. I think that’s why I read a lot of books, especially mystery, fantasy, and image-stirring novels. I watch movies often, but not melodramas or romance genres.

Q: Is there a special reason (why can’t you watch melodramas)?
A: I can’t watch them. (Laughs) They’re boring. I get sleepy. But no matter what movie I watch, there’s something to be gained. When I look at clothes from medieval times, I relate it to my stage clothes, or when I see a character’s situation or setting, I gain influence in trying and making choreography (off from it).

Q: What about seasons and weather?(Is there any influence from those?)
A: There is. However, not too much of a difference, because I don’t typically have a huge emotional fluctuation from season to season or type of weather. Though, I like winter more than summer.

Q: Why do you like winter more?
A: I was born in January. Since Winter is cold, you layer on clothes. There’s that warm feeling. Warmth is different than what you feel in hot weather. I like seeing people on the streets dress warmly.

Q: Don’t people often tell you that you’re mature?
A: I hear that often. I like hanging out with friends my age. But that doesn’t mean that I’ll force my thoughts on them or have any reason to say “You have to do it this way” or “This is the right way.”

Q:But not everyone who lives a group life matures/grows up.
A: I was a very quiet kid. I didn’t speak much, but when I entered the company I became brighter. There were a lot of fun friends and people around me, so as I shared stories and talked with them to fit in, and my personality changed. Still, I’m very sensitive, feel guilty a lot, and think so much to the point that some days I can’t sleep.

Q: On what days can’t you sleep?
A: When I make choreographic mistakes at important events, I continuously blame myself/ feel guilty. At some point, I forget that and fall deep into thought, and say things like, “Why was I born?” In grade school, seeing the world through my eyes was fascinating. In middle school, I thought, “Out of many people, not this or that person, but why me?” or “Why am I seeing the world through these/ my eyes?” In high school, I thought, “Isn’t there a reason why I was born?” Now, I’m absorbed with thoughts of why I dance, why I sing. I think it’s these thoughts that bite my tail and keep me up at night.

Q: Is “you’re sexy” another thing you hear often?
A: Surprisingly, I actually hear people say that I’m bright and nice. Not because I’m actually nice, but rather because I look fierce and cold, but when they get to know me, I’m not like that. People don’t outright tell me I’m sexy, but I think it’s a good thing to hear.

Q: How alike and different is the image people see of you and the image you see of yourself?
A: Every person sees differently. It could be my dance, but some focus on my emotions, and some focus on my strength. I want to be the Kai that everyone thinks of. I want to freely leave the thoughts of the people who watch me.

Q: Is there something unexpected about you to share?
A: I’m shabby/lax. I often lose my belongings and when I eat, I spill food down my chin like there’s a hole. I also have an instinct for gag/to be funny. I make people laugh by forcefully putting words that don’t make sense in a ridiculous situation. It comes naturally with people I’m close to. I can’t do it when someone forces me to.

Q: If there’s something unexpected about you to share?
A: I get stressed, because I think about it too much. The more I think about it, the more unsatisfied I am and go astray. Then I tell myself not to worry and to dance and sing without any thoughts, and that “I can’t mess up.” While, I used to strictly pay attention to every little detail, now I don’t think and just have fun/ I think things work out better that way.

Q: Does the stage always feel new? Or is it a completely familiar place?
A: Both. Overall, I feel comfortable and free on stage. But moving my body is the comfortable part, and the emotions I feel are new every time. There’s choreography that I dance happily to and have fun and there’s choreography that I dance to relay a message/ feelings.

Q: Kai’s dance seems special, because it seems like there’s something you want to pass on (to the audience).
A: For concert performances, I consider the mood and lyrics of a song. For my solo stages, I put my own emotions. Title tracks have distinct choreography and pairing with another member. If there’s an importance to the lyrics, there are no limitations to solo stages. If it’s sad, the dance gets sad. If it’s sad, but you dance in a way that makes you feel good, then the people watching, receive the emotion and also feel good.

Q: It must be control/command of the stage.
A: Dance is fun, because it’s like the assembly of a well-put together puzzle. You don’t simply dance because you memorize the choreography but because there’s a reason behind every lift and drop of your arm. It’s probably because I think of it that way.

Q: Do you have the greed to learn/ know all types of dance?
A: I don’t want to dance with a heart of just gaining information. But, it’d be nice to be able to pull out bits of each (genre of dance) as a tool to use if there’s something I want to express.

Q: Do you also go to see other artists’ performances?
A:I don’t have much time. But when I was younger, I saw a lot of ballet performances.

Q: There’s Youtube.
A: Right! I watch on Youtube. I really go onto Youtube everyday. Not just dance videos, but a lot of funny videos too. I watch a huge amount of dance videos. Not just famous dancers, but even small performances, musicals, dance scenes from old movies, like ‘Singing in the Rain.’ I like videos of foreigners doing funny dances and singing videos.

Q: I’m curious of your song playlist.
A: I listen to EXO songs. Haha. Lately, I’ve been practicing singing a lot. In the past month, I have often been listening to songs of our land’s (Korean’s) musicians, like G. Soul, Na Yoon Kwon, and Kim Yeon Woo sunbaenims’ songs. I will always like John Legend, Travis Garland, and Boyz II Men.

Q: Is it a period where your interest in music over dance increases?
A: Recently, I bought audio cards and a mic at Nakwon Shopping District and now I’m recording using Logic (an audio recording/ editing software). I can’t make perfect songs yet. I just straighten out my voice to sound pretty (nice) and do volume checks. I’m having fun with it like it’s a game without getting stressed.

Q: Your birthday is on the 14th. Do you know what day it is?
A: Diary day? I had no idea. White day and what else? Valentine’s day. I’ve never done/ celebrated things like that. I’ve never tried.

Q: Do you tend to not celebrate important days/anniversaries?
A: If someone remembers my birthday, I try to look out for his. It’s okay if anyone cares for my birthday. I don’t really think it’s important.

Q: What do you do on your birthday?
A: After debuting, I’ve been working every single day. Haha

Q: As of late, where is the place you want to go?
A: Originally, I didn’t have schedules between August 1st – 11th, and I thought I would go to Poland. I realized all the famous dancers go there and perform. I thought I could learn from dance workshops, but I ended up unable to go.

Q: Would it be better to go (travel) with family or friends?
A: I like both. I think it’ll be fun with friends and comfortable with family. I think I’ll go on vacation spots with family and fun places with friends. It’d be nice/fun to go to a deserted house and have a scary experience.

Trans © aiolosh

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