Korean entertainment company JJJ Studio recently launched a contest inviting expats and foreign nationals to sing the Korean National Anthem in their languages. Participants from more than 20 countries applied in the competition with only 12 selected in the final round.
Korean-Pakistani Sungmin Siddiqi reached the final round with his Urdu rendition of the Korean national anthem (Aegukga) and ended up bagging the second place in the competition and winning 500, 000 Korean Won (approx. 68, 000 PKR).
Siddiqi is half-Korean, half-Pakistani, with his father hailing from Pakistan and mother from Korea. He was born and raised in Pakistan and later moved to Korea. A model and content creator by profession, the 26-year-old also sings and plays guitar. In an introduction video, he shares how he has also worked on a rock-qawali fusion as well.
At the awards ceremony, Siddiqi’s win made his mother emotional who was happy to see him sing the Aegukga in Urdu.
Previously, JJJ Studio made a buzz in Pakistan when they released a Korean cover of the Coke Studio hit Sammi Meri Waar by Umair Jaswal and Quratulain Baloch. Siddiqi also directed and starred in the ‘Sammi Meri Waar’ cover video.
Specializing in such cross-cultural collaborations and giving Asian and Middle Eastern folk a Korean flavor, a representative from JJJ Studio said they are also planning to cover Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s qawwali next.