Baro who was born in 1992 confessed that he has nearly no memories of the 90’s. The big Sampoong mall collapse, or the Seongsu bridge collapse too, don’t exist in his memories. They are stories he’s heard from his parents’ mouths. 20 years ago. Not long after he was born, he plays an already 20 year old, young man and is acting out the events of that time, and helped him realize the time that has gone by.
B1A4 has an upcoming comeback in January of the new year. Today’s interview, in the middle of drama filming, and preparing for a new album, to say it simply he’s so busy he has no time to blink. We grabbed a busy Baro to talk a little, and even in his busy schedule without rest, he tried to say exactly what he felt and express himself. And when we asked, ‘Aren’t you tired?’ he said against what was expected, the truth about the work he had piled all around him, but also said, ‘The staff are even more tired than I am. I can still sleep, but the staff, even if they’re sick, they have to keep filming.’
If he had been in the spotlight since a young age it would have handicapped him, but before looking after himself, he looks at his surrondings, showing Baro’s maturity so much that he could be referred to as mature beyond his age. His own self has matured and the him from 1994 up to 2013, he has been able to guess the length of time that has passed by.
Q. Because you were born in 1992, in 1994 where the drama takes place you weren’t even three. Do you have an memories of the 90’s?
Baro: In 1999 I entered elemantary school, so what I remember of the 90’s is only through a picture diary. I really liked that, so I lloked up a lot of people who would have been in their twenties during that time. So things like what they had, the Sampoong mall incident, or the bridge that collapsed. (Q. Whoa! That means you don’t know about the Seongsu Bridge accident!!) That’s right. My mom has told me about some things that happened around then. I even found and started listening to music from then too. The time I started listening to music was when god was at its peak. I liked H.O.T. and S.E.S. too, but by that time the 1st generation of idols had already passed. That was when I listened to DBSK sunbaes a lot.
Q. You’re almost doing a historical drama now (laugh). Do you feel the generation gap from people who lived through the 90’s?
Baro: Hahaha. Right a historical drama! Um, with the sunbaes and producers who had lived through the 90’s, even with regular things I feel the difference. Even though culture in general changes quickly as time goes by and what we think is different from what the sunbaes think, what the adults are saying isn’t wrong, so I listen carefully.
Q. Right, by the way when was your mother born?
Baro: My mother was born in 1966. My mom’s a Trash hyung fan. When she says, ‘Yup, you’re playing Binggeurae well. Just keep doing what you’re doing,’ usually right after that she goes, ‘Omo, what to do with Trash oppa.’ (laugh) She says she’ll come to our filming site, but I said, ‘No! Don’t think about it.’
Q. But because of the drama it seems that your fan base has gone up a level.
Baro: I noticed that noonas in their mid-twenties and men too liked it. The problems Baro faces they can identify with and say, ‘In that time, my situation was similar. Binggeura, you suffered like I did. Right now Binggeurae doesn’t know what he wants to do and is struggling, and the people of the same age and the people who are working right now, but don’t like it and are forcing themselves to do it, can relate to Binggeurae. That’s why I want the problems that Binggeurae is facing now, to be solved in a positive way. It’s because I want to have a character who gives strength to others. Besides his dreams, I hope the episode with his family will be solved positively as well.
Q. Then I’m curious about what you, yourself, understand about Binggeurae’s struggle, if you have any similar experiences.
Baro: If I was Binggeurae, I wouldn’t have even gone to medical school from the beginning. I would have been willing to run away. However from the time I was little, my parents always supported me in whatever I wanted to do and were willing to accept that. They always said, ‘You can do what you want, do it without regrets.’ So I never went through what Binggeurae went through, but if I did I would have done what I wanted until the end. Though when I look at Binggeurae, he likes music, but because of his shyness he hesitates to make a decision on his college’s festival. Right now Binggeurae really does not know what he likes, or what he likes to do.
Q. When you were just a little boy, when did you firmly start dreaming about becoming an artist?
Baro: The moment when I came up to Seoul and passed my audition. That was when I was in my 2nd year of high school (t/n: High school is three years in Korea, so the equivalent would be 11th grade). I thought, ‘Ah, through music I’ll fire up my dreams and passion.’ Up until then, honestly I wasn’t sure if I would be able to live off music. I liked hip hop, but it’s not like there were academies where you could learn that kind of thing, but you couldn’t just enjoy it as a hobby and pass. It’s just that then, during our school festival, I participated in a play, and it was then that my parents became serious if I should enter a good university as an acting major. That was my first goal. But right when I started study, my friend suggested that I audition and I passed. I told my parents, that before I hadn’t had a chance with music, though I had some confidence and passion, but now with the chance I was given I could try.
Q. If you look by the results, you did end up doing the acting that you had originally wanted to do.
Baro: So I really like it. While we were filming I felt that I had really good luck, and that there were no bad people around me. They’re all good people. I do try hard, but the people around me watch and help me out a lot. For example my parents, they helped me go on this road, although there are many families that would be against, but thanks to my parents they helped me go along this path clearer. In my school days, my teachers said too, ‘Do you want to participate in the festival? Do you want to try?’ and they gave me lots of suggestions. My company and members are good and the fans are nice. There’s nothing, but good people. The people I’ve met from filming too, the producers, the actor hyungs, they’re all nice. It’s an environment where I just have to do well too. That’s why recently, whatever chance I get, I don’t think about anything else, but doing all I can. That way around me, it can be happier and be better.
Q. I think the bigger environment of the drama has helped your individual growth. But there must have been times where it was hard.
Baro: Of course there are times where I was sad or tired. In those times my mind has no freedom and my sight narrows. If there’s anything that’s different now, it would be that I can see further ahead. So I can see the different roads ahead of me. I think my sight has gotten wider. I can think more carefully now too. Before I used to throw tantrums or act without maturity. Ah, I really feel like I’ve learned a lot this year. If feels like as if from debut until now I’ve acted without maturity, but with this drama, I’ve not only experienced the drama. Through other experiences I’ve met many people and thought many different things. But there will definitely be a time, as life goes on, where I’ll think the me now isn’t mature (laugh). Just like how the me right now looks back at the me in my memories as immature.
Q. While doing the drama, have there been thoughts about yourself that have changed?
Baro: Honestly while doing this drama, I thought of this thing called Baro is really not much. I met a lot of awesome sunbaes, so I think that’s why. I thought that so I can go forward, so that more people will know me, I’ll work really hard. So I’m trying to improve myself. A big worry I have is to make sure to not bother anyone. So after the drama, I became more careful. How much I talk too, has reduced. Whatever I do, before that I think carefully about it. Even if it’s just posting a picture on SNS. So there are things that worry me, just in case my intentions with this chance isn’t like that, if people think ‘I changed.’ I tried hard so that people wouldn’t think I had gotten cocky. I’ve talked recently with one of our members, Sandeul, about it too. But even if I didn’t say it, my members already knew my troubles and understood me. My members of course knew that before you undergo something, you get sharper, and although it isn’t shown on the outside, they understand everything already. So it makes me sorry, but I’m also grateful.
Q. It feels like you’ve changed a lot. You’re more mature than your age, and your expression shows that.
Baro: Originally I wasn’t very good at talking about these things (laugh). I hear that I’m more mature than my age, nowadays a lot.
Q. I’m curious about something, but in the drama the boarding house mother always puts out lots and lots of food. How do you deal with all that food?
Baro: Ah, everybody was really curious about that. They make it all on set and everybody eats with that. And there’s a scene where I eat really well, but that’s not to have a food broadcast. It’s really because it’s so delicious. And also because the amount is so larger, when we’re going scene to scene we don’t want it to go down to a normal amount due to scene continuity so we pretend to eat too. But no matter how much we eat there’s always still food. But really, it’s so delicious. The clams, the jeons, the fried eggs, and above all the kimchi is art! Except for the soy sauce crabs, it was a little salty because it needed to ferment some more. Oh right, the bean noodles were really delicious too. Sob.
Q. Right if you were a college student in the 90’s what would be the thing you want to to do the most?
I would want to go to the Rock Cafe (laugh).
Q. For the end, your comeback is coming in January, so could you hint as to what you guys are preparing?
Baro: If it’s January, it’s going to be the winter. Right now we’re deciding the concept, creating the jacket cover, and in the middle of preparation. Honestly in the beginning I had to completely focus on ‘Reply 1994.’ It was tiring doing the two things at once. But now my mind feels freer and I’m doing both things. So in the beginning there were things that I was sorry for, for my members. Um, the album that will come out in January fits really with the season, and it also is filled with the stories we want to say. As much as the time has passed, we think we will be able to show a side on a higher level.
[TRANS/INT] 131124 #B1A4 Baro, “The ending of ‘Reply 1994’ that I’m hoping for?” (part 1/2) http://tmblr.co/Zp5BUx1BoJ1WY
source: ten asia (1); (2) / trans cr: afterJJyoung @ AVIATEB1A4 / Take out with full credit to the sources and translator
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