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Who was the first K-pop idol to attend the Met Gala?

Which K-pop idols have attended the Met Gala? (Images via YG Entertainment and SM Entertainment)
Which K-pop idols have attended the Met Gala? (Images via YG Entertainment and SM Entertainment)

The Met Gala has a history of inviting K-pop stars to grace their program, but who was the very first act to represent the South Korean pop-music industry on the big stage?

Psy and Super Junior's Choi Siwon opened the doors for their juniors to make their own mark at the prestigious Met Gala. The two were dressed to their very best which left a lasting impression on many. This year's attendees also featured a couple more K-pop stars who made history with their presence.


History of K-pop idols at the Met Gala

The "first" K-pop act to attend the Met Gala was in fact not just one, but two. Choi Siwon from SM Entertainment's Super Junior and (at the time) YG Entertainment's Psy both made their appearances at the 2013 Met Gala fundraiser.

They were the first K-pop acts to officially grace the event. Choi Siwon, in turn, is technically the first K-pop group member to attend, and Psy is said to be the first K-pop solo act. The theme for that year was Punk: Chaos to Couture.

While there was no immediate uptake in the rate of K-pop stars invited, doors were opened and their fellow industry peers were soon gracing the platform.

In 2015, solo K-pop artist Rain graced the event, dressed for the theme of China: Through the Looking Glass.

The next K-pop star appearance was in 2019, when Lay from EXO (under SM Entertainment) attended the Camp: Notes on Fashion themed Gala.

This year, the Met Gala (Theme: In America: A Lexicon of Fashion) was attended by not one, but two history-makers. 2NE1 member CL, under her own label "Very Cherry," made her entrance at the ball.

The other stunning appearance was Rosé, from the YG Entertainment girl group Blackpink. Donning Yves Saint Laurent (of whom she is a global ambassador), she swayed into the room accompanied by the creative director of the brand, Anthony Vaccarello.

Together, CL and Rosé are the very first female K-pop acts to grace the Met Gala.


With the K-pop industry becoming increasingly globalized and international with every passing year, the world is ready to see more and more K-pop acts at Western-dominated events.

Earlier, the K-pop industry saw a huge shift in international coverage with the attendance of BTS at various Western-based awards shows, including the prestigious Grammys.

Other K-pop acts have begun to take over the scene as well. The possibilities are endless for K-pop stars, a prospect which excites many.

Edited by Sijo Samuel Paul
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