Hwang In Youp recalls Pinoy friends who encouraged him to become an actor

Charmie Joy Pagulong - The Philippine Star
Hwang In Youp recalls Pinoy friends who encouraged him to become an actor
South Korean star Hwang In Youp is pictured during his first official fan meet in the Philippines mounted by Ovation Productions.

MANILA, Philippines — Hwang In Youp relived some of his fondest memories from when he lived and studied in Davao City during his fan meet at the New Frontier Theater in Quezon City on Saturday.

The South Korean star attended high school at the Philippine Nikkei Jin Kai International School and earned his Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, Major in Fashion Design, at the Philippine Women’s College of Davao.

He was “very happy” to be back in the Philippines, the last stop of his fan meeting tour in Asia.

Through event host and translator Sam Oh, he expressed his intention to visit Davao City again.

“I really, really want to go to Davao but the schedule can be a little tight. However, I plan that within the year, I will make a secret trip to Davao. Before the year ends… Every time I come here, I feel like I’m visiting my hometown,” he shared.

Moreover, the actor-model wants to play “someone like a royalty” in the future if ever given another historical-drama project, like the series The Tale of Nokdu (2019), where he essayed the role of a warrior.

He recalled, “When I was in the Philippines, the series Princess Hours (Goong) was a big hit back then. I want to play someone like royalty.”

In Youp added that when he was living in the country, he joined a competition where he made a barong and emerged as a top winner.

“I find it really beautiful,” he said of the traditional Filipino wear.

In Youp interacts and plays games with kilig fans. Left photo: Fans come in full force at the fan meet at the New Frontier Theater.
Photo courtesy of Jude Ng and Ovation Productions

When the South Korean series 18 Again (2020) was mentioned during the program, he quickly looked back on his days in Davao as a student. He portrayed the role of a basketball team captain in the series.

“I was not particularly a good student, I was average. I was quiet but I got along well with my friends. I like eating halo-halo back then. I would also go to Jollibee and eat there. I remember though that back in the day, my friends were really good at playing street basketball. They were the ones who actually taught me how to play basketball at that time,” he recalled.

Even before he became an actor, he had Filipino friends encouraging him to give acting a try. “When I was studying here, my friends would tell me, when you go back to Korea, maybe you would like to be an actor. I had friends like that,” he said.

“As I was making this project (True Beauty), I heard (it) was actually very popular in the Philippines. So, I remembered my friends and I was thinking and wondering if my friends are also watching the show. I am very, very happy, of course, that the show is doing so well and being received so well here in the Philippines. I am very, very thankful for that,” he said.

Aside from acting, singing and playing the guitar, the things he did for the Netflix fantasy music-drama The Sound of Magic (2022), In Youp said he is also interested in learning the piano and drums. He further revealed that his Filipino friends, who were members of a band, showed him how to play cajon beatbox.

When asked about having a crush on someone, In Youp admitted that he would be “very bold” to tell a girl about how he feels, much like his character in Why Her (2022) as Gong Chan. “I will tell her directly that ‘I like you.’”

In Youp sang a Korean track as his opening number and performed another song from The Sound of Magic as closing.

He also participated in the quiz segment, where he answered all the questions about Philippine history correctly.

He had a blast eating halo-halo on stage and reciting some Tagalog words, like “Mahal ko kayo,” “Ang ganda mo,” “Gusto kita,” and his sexy version of “Mahal kita,” which made the fans scream in excitement. Some lucky attendees got the chance to go on stage and play games with him.

In Youp took a brief pause off stage while a vlog he made himself was shown on screen about how he spends his day.

As the second part of the official fan meet resumed, In Youp walked around the audience in the theater. “I wanted to get some time being intimate and up close with all of you. That is why I did that round around the theater. I hope that you will take this as a really good memory from tonight,” he explained his act.

The program continued with him singing a live rendition of a track from Why Her, performing “okey-dokey dance” from True Beauty, making a traditional Korean paper fan and taking a group photo with fans.

“Thank you so much for welcoming me so warmly in your country and there’s one Filipina who started a fan club for me. I am very grateful for that. I love you. After my next project, I want to come back and I hope to make an event where each and everyone of you can take home something,” he concluded.

The fan meet was presented by Ovation Productions.

In Youp is currently working on a “secret project” and can’t divulge the details just yet.


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