110302 Kim Junsu “Acting Has Its Own Charm But It’s Still Difficult.”
“It’s such a sad love story. If I really get into the scene and my role, I find myself unable to hold back the tears that stream down my face.”
TVXQ’s Xiah Junsu has transformed into the musical actor Kim Junsu, and is experiencing explosive popularity.
With soaring popularity, Kim Junsu is currently playing the lead role of Jun in the large-scale musical production ‘Tears of Heaven’ as a man wrought by a sorrowed love. Kim Junsu said, “During my first performance on February 1st, I really got into the scene and my role, and I found myself unable to hold back the tears that were streaming down my face. I see a lot of the audience members wiping tears away at the end of each performance,” and “During the musical, I start crying every time I enact the scene of Jun parting with his loved one.”
When asked whether acting or singing is harder, Kim Junsu confessed that he struggled with the difficulties of acting as he said, “Though singing is quite tough, acting is even harder. And even harder than that is singing and acting at the same time and it’s something that requires a lot of effort. It’s really difficult to express detailed emotions and I think it’s only possible when you fully understand and can embody your character.”
Kim Junsu boasts the greatest ticket power in the nation’s musical industry and he has proved this countless times by selling out all his performances in mere minutes.
Kim Junsu’s role in ‘Tears of Heaven’ is split between three people including Kim Junsu himself; he plays the role of Jun for 17 performances out of 53. Fans who were anxious to see Xiah Junsu’s performance could do nothing but turn to expensive scalper’s tickets. When Kim Junsu heard that expensive scalper’s tickets were being sold for his performances, he said, “It is an unfortunate event that pains my heart. All I can say to my fans is that I’m sorry. I should be lessening the discomforts of my fans who wish to see me on stage a couple more times, but it’s hard to do that in real life.”
He explained the reasoning behind his decisions as he said, “Musicals are a tiring event that combine singing and acting. I’m not pushing myself too hard because musicals require actors to preserve their voices in top conditions. Because I need to make sure my voice is in its best state, I’ve decided not to stand on stage too often.” Kim Junsu expressed his apologies as he said, “It was a choice I had to make in order to keep my voice in its best state. I really can say nothing to my fans other than that I’m sorry.” A representative of the production team stated, “We’ve seen a trend of fans coming to watch ‘Tears of Heaven’ starring one of the other actors, and then deciding to watch the show again to see Kim Junsu perform.” But tickets for Kim Junsu’s performances have already been sold out.
‘Tears of Heaven’ was created by a combination of individuals considered at the top of their game.
Kim Junsu showed pride in his work as he said, “The musical ‘Mozart!’ that I performed in last year had already been established as an extremely popular production overseas, but ‘Tears of Heaven’ was more fun because we were able to go through the process of adding countless changes to the scenario and the work as a whole. It felt like I was creating the musical.” He continued to say, “When I first starting preparing for ‘Mozart!’, it was extremely hard because it was much different from performing as a singer. So I started learning as I performed on stage and I took time to correct any faults,” and “It may be because I have some experience under my belt, but I feel more relaxed and comfortable performing in ‘Tears of Heaven’.”
Brad Little, a top Broadway actor who works alongside Kim Junsu did not hold back on praise for Kim Junsu as he said, “Kim Junsu is a natural actor and has the ability to communicate with the audience.”
Kim Junsu is not an actor. He is not a musical actor. But many say that his charm that captivates the audience and his ability to learn new things surpasses that of any actor in the industry. That is the raw talent that Kim Junsu possesses.
Producer and CEO Kim Kwang Su didn’t hold back on his praise for Kim Junsu either as he said, “Xiah Junsu is magnificent as a musical actor. People don’t come just to see his face. They come to watch the musical that showcases his acting and singing. When the performance ends, audience members are seen busily wiping tears away with their handkerchiefs. That proves that Kim Junsu’s acting is stable and that his singing is of a superb quality.”
‘Tears of Heaven’ is a large-scale romantic musical that depcits the grandeur of the love of one man that overcomes fate. Kim Junsu showcases charismatic acting and singing as he plays the lead role of ‘Jun’, a Korean soldier in Vietnam who falls in love with a Vietnamese woman he happens to meet and gives his all to a love that seems to overcome fate. His partner is played by Davichi’s Lee Haeri and the musical star Yoon Gong Ju.
Kim Junsu shares a sweet kiss with Davicihi’s Lee Haeri (and Yoon Gong Ju at times) during the performance. During the first couple of rehearsals, Kim Junsu was extremely embarrassed to act out his kiss scene with Lee Haeri. Regarding the kiss scene, Kim Junsu said, “I had about four kiss scenes in my first musical ‘Mozart!’. In ‘Tears of Heaven’, I have about two or three. It’s true that I didn’t not have regrets about the scenes in ‘Mozart!'” He continued to smile brashly and say, “At first I wondered if the kiss scene would work out well because I was worrying about the reaction from fans, but the kiss feels natural if I really get into my role; I stop thinking of it as a simple kiss scene. I feel bad for my partner sometimes.”
At Kim Junsu’s embarrassment, Brad LIttle aroused laughter from those around them as he said, “Practice makes perfect.”
When asked, ‘Isn’t it hard to communicate with Brad Little? Do you understand English to a certain extent?’, Kim Junsu said, “I can’t speak English that well so a translator helps us out. There are times when we don’t really need to communicate with words. Because we act and sing during the performance, our emotions are delivered to each other. At first I worried a lot about English, but the staff told me, ‘Because you’re a soldier in Vietnam, it’ll be more realistic for you to use Konglish. Konglish makes it more realisitic. I’m kind of glad that I don’t have to use English.”
Regarding Brad Little, Kim Junsu said, “Though he’s the world’s best musical actor, he gets along so well with the Korean actors and works hard to communicate with and learn something from the younger actors. I want to be like him when I age.”
When asked about the series of events that followed after leaving TVXQ, Kim Junsu showed a strong determination as he said, “I went through a lot. Everyone has happy memories and hard times. I had a crisis in my life. It was last year and the year before that,” and “Though they were really tough times, those years helped me learn more about life. I know I will be happier in the future and I will work hard to walk on a happy road.”
With tears in his eyes, Kim Junsu also said, “After that ordeal, I’ve lost so much. I’ve lost a lot of people around me,” and “But I’ve also gained people who have stayed by my side through the whole thing.”
In the musical, Kim Junsu plays the role of a man who gives his all to the one woman he loves.
When asked about his experience in love, Kim Junsu said, “Even in real life, I never think of love as a light subject,” and “What is most important is being sincere.” He confessed that, “In the past, there was a celebrity who expressed that she liked me though she never actually asked me out. There was even a member of a girl group who said she liked me, but it never developed into a relationship.” He also garnered great attention when he said, “There was a female celebrity who I really liked but we never dated. I believe a person’s personality, as well as her looks, is important.”
Currently, Kim Junsu is performing under the name JYJ, not TVXQ, with Kim Jaejoong and Park Yoochun.
‘Tears of Heaven’ will continue to play at the National Theater until the 19th of March.
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