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) is a music genre originating in South Korea, characterized by a wide variety of audiovisual elements.
Although it includes all genres of "popular music" within South Korea, the term is often used in a narrower sense to describe a modern form of South Korean pop music drawing inspiration on a range of styles and genres incorporated from the rest of the world such as Western pop music, rock, experimental, jazz, gospel, Latin, hip hop, R&B, reggae, electronic dance, folk, country and classical on top of its uniquely traditional Korean music roots.
Trainees live together in a regulated environment and spend many hours a day learning music, dance, foreign languages and other skills in preparation for their debut.
This "robotic" system of training is often criticized by Western media outlets.
Korean cinema also began to develop and Korean musicians began performing to wider audiences.
The South Korean government has acknowledged benefits to the country's export sector as a result of the Korean Wave (it was estimated in 2011 that a US0 increase in the export of cultural products resulted in a US2 increase in exports of other consumer goods including food, clothes, cosmetics and IT products Government initiatives to expand the popularity of K-pop are mostly undertaken by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, which is responsible for the worldwide establishment of Korean Cultural Centers.
However, the use of English has not guaranteed the popularity of K-pop in the North American market.
For some commentators, the reason for this is because the genre can be seen as a distilled version of Western music, making it difficult for K-pop to find acceptance in these markets. When combining multiple singers, the singers often switch their positions while singing and dancing by making prompt movements in synchrony, a strategy called "formation changing" (Korean: 자리바꿈, Jaribaggum).
The first talent contest for rock bands in Seoul was organized in 1968. Some Korean singers gained international popularity. The Kim Sisters, Yoon Bok-hee and Patti Kim were the first singers to debut in such countries as Vietnam and United States.
The Kim Sisters became the first Korean group to release an album in the United States, performing in Las Vegas and appearing several times on Ed Sullivan's TV show.
South Korean embassies and consulates have also organized K-pop concerts outside the country, The history of Korean popular music can be traced back to 1885 when an American missionary, Henry Appenzeller, began teaching American and British folk songs at a school.