On December 31, 2022, IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo's cover performance of IU's Strawberry Moon at the 2022 MBC Music Festival was released and fans were disappointed to find that the two were lip-syncing the track while seated.
Following the release of the performance, netizens had quite a few opinions about the situation.
An individual wrote:
"They are straight up dolls and nothing more"
While some expressed that lip-syncing is typical in K-pop due to the difficulty the accompanying choreography adds to the performance, individuals believed that IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo lip-syncing, while seated, defeated the whole point of a live performance and made it all the more unacceptable.
Naturally, fans also came to defend the artists, expressing how IVE's busy schedule probably did not give the members time to prepare for the performance.
Netizens fire up Twitter following the news of IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo lip-syncing at the 2022 MBC Music Festival
The 2022 MBC Music Festival, held on December 31, 2022, was one of the most awaited events of the year. The special performances and unique stages that K-pop idols prepare for music festivals make the end-of-the-year an exciting time for fans.
Ever since the announcement that IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo would be having a collab stage for the MBC Music Festival, fans were excited to see what the duo had in store for them. However, their lip-syncing let down many people and disappointed individuals who were looking forward to seeing the artists perform live. Fans also made it clear that their disappointment lies not in the act of lip-syncing itself.
Many people understand that it can be quite a difficult task to sing whilst performing a clearly complex choreography, therefore, lip-syncing makes sense unless there's an alternate showcase of their dance skills in the performance. What fans found difficult to accept was that IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo didn't have any choreography to roll out and were seated for the entirety of the performance.
Here, lip-syncing was unnecessary and raised concerns about their inability to showcase their live vocals. Naturally, netizens jumped on the issue, directing criticism toward the idols for not having the vocals to be confident enough to perform at a live music festival.
With a mountain of arguments raised against IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo, several fans defended the two artists as well. Many blamed the incident on their agency, Starship Entertainment, and claimed they most likely made them lip-sync regardless of the idols' interest. Fans added that the girls had quite a hectic schedule with seven performances to record, award shows to sing at, travel, and more.
The duo may not have been in the ideal state to pull off a live ballad performance and fans argue that even if they sang live under their given circumstances, IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo would be criticized regardless, for not being "good enough." The constant criticism of the fourth-gen K-pop girl group, IVE, makes fans lose patience when netizens choose to make scandals out of typical K-pop incidents only with regard to IVE.
Given that there are quite a handful of live performances to showcase that IVE Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo have definitely got the talent with vocals and dance skills, fans believe that netizens need to be more considerate of the girls given their circumstances.