The start of ones K-Pop career is their audition for a company. Everyone wants to put their best foot forward, and that includes picking the right song to sing.

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BLACKPINK’s Jisoo during her audition for YG Entertainment | BLACKPINK: Light Up The Sky

YouTube channel AYO invited two idol trainers to answer the questions of K-Pop aspirants. Former idol Lee Yoonji from Playback is the principal of idol training school Making Academy while her interview partner Kim Se Yeon trained aspirants through one-on-one vocal lessons for 10 years and counting.

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Kim Se Yeon (Left) and Lee Yoonji (Right) | AYO/YouTube

One of the most interesting things they were asked was, “Recommended audition list. What do I have to pick? Please help me, teacher.”

audition list

They suggested singing a K-Pop song and not a ballad even if they want to show off their vocal prowess. After all, they’re auditioning to become idols in the future.

It’s better if you can sing idol songs well. You’re not trying to be a ballad singer. So the first thing [to do] is to sing idol songs well rather than only singing ballads well. A lot of idol songs are rhythmical so it’s nice if you can show your sense of rhythm. A lot of people think they get bored if you sing something too famous. That’s actually not true. You just have to sing what you’re good at.

— Kim Se Yeon

To make their auditions go infinitely smoother, Lee Yoonji proposed that they avoid songs from the company they’re trying out for. The ones who pick those who pass the round will likely be more critical of a song that they know well.

It’s better to avoid the song of that agency. For example, SM Entertainment knows about this song so well, and if you sing it, you’ll get compared to the original.

— Lee Yoonji

The tracks that the AYO netizen suggested were not in line with their own recommendations: “I can see that they picked these difficult songs not to be compared. Still, you have to pick a song with mass appeal.”

To end, Kim Se Yeon went a step further by naming specific songs that are great bets during auditions. They were melodic pop songs and ballads by top artists Taeyeon and I.O.I from Produce 101 Season 1.

My personal recommendation is I.O.I’s ‘Downpour’ and Taeyeon’s ‘Rain.’

— Kim Se Yeon

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To know more words of wisdom from the two trainers, check out the full video below!