In the midst of the fan craze around BTS’ North American debut at the American Music Awards, there was another K-pop star on the AMA red carpet who a) got a little lost and b) one hundo p deserves a mention. Because Jackson Wang’s boyish good looks—and that chic Dior Homme Spring 2018 black suit!—should be the very definition of “hard to miss.”
So, who is Jackson Wang? He’s one of the seven members of Got7, a K-pop boy group formed by JYP Entertainment in 2014. Alongside his bandmates JB, Jinyoung, Mark Youngjae, BamBam and Yugyeom, he never fails to produce super-catchy hits like “Just Right,” “If You Do,” “Fly” and their latest, “You Are.” (Go ahead and add those to your playlist, we’ll wait right here.)
Wang is one of the most active members of the group, thanks to his solo efforts in both South Korea and China, and with 7.6 million Instagram followers and counting, he’s the most visible, too—which means if he’s not on your radar yet, he should be. So, here are the five things you need to know about Jackson Wang.
He’s the rapper and dancer of Got7
Roles may be more and more ambiguous as times goes by, but when the K-pop boy group first debuted in January 2014, Wang was known as the rapper and dancer of the group. And with the help of his entertainment company, JYP, Wang recently formed his own agency, Team Wang, to exclusively help with his solo activities in China, including the release of his first single “Papillon.”
He can speak multiple languages
Born and raised in Hong Kong, Wang is actually of Chinese descent and attended the American International School, a private school in Hong Kong, prior to moving to South Korea to be K-pop trainee. He’s fluent in English, Cantonese, Mandarin, Shanghainese, Japanese and Korean.
He turned down a Stanford fencing scholarship to chase his dreams
Following in his father’s footsteps (Papa Wang was a former member of China’s national fencing team and an Asian Games medalist), Wang started fencing at the age of 10. He went on to win multiple awards as part of the Hong Kong national fencing team, including first place at the 2011 Asian Junior and Cadet Fencing Championship. However, he turned down a scholarship for Stanford University and a chance to join Hong Kong’s national team for the 2012 London Olympics in favour of pursuing his dream of being a K-pop star.
He and his parents are super tight
Wang made the brave decision to move to South Korea solo, but he has been open about how much he missed his parents back in Hong Kong. The K-pop star has often said that being far away from his parents was one of the hardest parts of his trainee days. Nowadays, his parents are often seen at Got7’s concerts and the fam spends tons of quality time together whenever he’s back in his home city. You can see the loving support via Wang’s mom’s Instagram account.
He’s a variety star and his following in China is HUGE
Aside from performing as a group with fellow Got7 members, Wang does a lot of solo stuff—and not only in South Korea, but also in China. His work ethic and bubbly personality have helped him nab many hosting duties on variety shows, as well as coveted ambassador roles. Case in point: Alibaba (China’s biggest e-commerce company) recently named him as the Alibaba TMall ambassador, which is why he walked the 2017 AMAs red carpet.