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BoA's "bad" English


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#1 Kudaranai

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 06:25 PM

70% of the responses I've seen about BoA debuting in America is something along the line of "she won't make it, her English is bad." I personally don't think her English is bad at all. Her recent English songs are pretty much clear and perfectly understandable. Then, a few days ago I came across a video (from BoAnoss) of BoA's interview on AIUEO where she spoke some English. I was very impressed. She sounds better than some Asians who LIVE in America.



The beginning: "Hello, I'm BoA. You're watching AIUEO"
Around 2:19 and on. (PS: lol she was so cute \o/)
4:38 "But I'm gonna try it"

That last one caught me off-guard. I went "Whoa" out loud.

Do you guys really think BoA's English is that bad? I mean, that interview was 2 years ago and she did really well. I know it wasn't a full-English interview, but it's enough to convince me that BoA's English is not as bad as most people think.

#2 pupluvgurl

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 06:36 PM

I remember that interview, she spoke alot of english because she could only communicate with Edison Chan so she had some good practice but at the XMAS Live her english during Santa Baby wasn't that great but the last one at 4:38 was very good.

#3 EndimioN

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 06:47 PM

actually... she preonnounces AIUEO.. in spanish XD

#4 Cori

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 06:59 PM

Its not that her pronounciation is bad, its how much she knows. Her pronounciation is really good, she has an accent like Se7en does and hes becoming really good. Just the last time I heard her talk a lot was during the Canes festival. But its still not enough. Also, her interview on CNN was mostly spoken in Korean with an english interviewer. I saw this on my own TV and my mom said she should have spoken in english more. Its great that she can understand english, but she still has some trouble making english sentences. My Korean is the same, I can speak the accent really well, say little things, and understand but I draw a blank while making sentences. Its understandable, its something that studying and learning can help.

#5 s2_angel

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 07:22 PM

a bit off topic.. but that video was sooo cute !! ^^

back on topic, i dont think her english is that bad either. i remember i have a video of boa and edison when they were advertising the levi jeans. and she was asked a question in chinese regarding edison, and she answered in english. it was pretty fluent too, imo.



this video is slightly different, but i has what i'm talking about in it. i think this video was taken in 2006.. so yeah, you'd think her english has improved since then.

#6 -nothing-

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 07:29 PM

I dun think her english is bad either... I remember when she's speak english in MAA 2004. Her english is fluent in that show.

#7 c_e31

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 07:55 PM

SINGAPORE~! THEY MENTIONED SINGAPORE~! Haha. xD

This interview is SO adorable! Thanks for sharing.

And back on topic, I think her English isn't all that bad. But she still has that really thick accent - albeit it being understandable.

#8 volia

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 08:08 PM

Noooooooo I don't her english is considered bad. I mean get someone to learn how to speak english / chinese / japanese / korean language and maybe more, it's amazing enough from the video on how she speaks english and mandarin. For being able to speak so many different languages, she is sooo great!!

No one is perfect anyway so even if there are some flaws or mispronunciation in her english, she is still like 80-90% accurate? I think she will do well for the US debut =)

#9 sweetrockinlemonmud

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 09:57 PM

she's definitely gotten better ^^

i guess she'll just have to surprise us ^-^

#10 Alicks

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 09:59 PM

you have to keep in mind that the interviews you see are usually very controlled...
by that, i mean BoA usually knows the questions that will be asked, so she is able to prepare answers often. so i don't think these interviews are valid ways of judging her skill in speaking and understanding the english language.
i love her to death, but i do not think her english is "good enough." yes, it's okay... but i don't think it's quite good enough. people say her pronunciation is good, but is it really? i have to be honest, and it could use a lot of work.
asian artists have tried to succeed in the US market and failed, often not even because of their accents or grasp of the english language, but just BECAUSE they were asian, i'm guessing. it seems like americans aren't able to take asian artists seriously in the music industry. it's sad, but true... and i think BoA will be fighting an uphill battle & her average english skills won't be helping her. :)
anyway! i will be supporting her 100% in whatever she does, and i really REALLY hope she can break the trend and make it big here in the US, paving the way for other asian artists just as she did for koreans in japan. n___n

Edited by Alicks, 05 September 2008 - 10:02 PM.


#11 hinachan

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 10:03 PM

I think it's because she's out of practice now, but her English was much better before than it is now. If you listen to, say, Don't Start Now or Lights Of Seoul in English, compared to Key Of Heart or Last Christmas in English, you can hear how her English pronunciation has just gone into the toilet.

A language isn't like riding a bicycle...you have to keep working with it. Lee Soo Man had her studying Chinese (an exercise in futility) instead of keeping up with her English and improving it, which was a very, very stupid move.

I just hope the people at SM USA will be actual Americans who know bad English pronunciation when they hear it--not just Koreans who only speak "Engrish". BoA needs to brush up on her English--fast--or she'll be a laughingstock. An accent is charming; mispronouncing words is embarrassing.

They'd better make damned sure BoA is really ready for singing and doing interviews in English, or else she'll join the list of Korean artists who couldn't quite make it here in the USA.

@Alicks:
I think another thing Koreans have going against them right now is that Americans are getting so sick of jobs being shipped to China, unsafe Chinese imports, and even the Olympics cheating surrounding those little girls posing as Chinese "women" gymnasts, that it gives all Asians a bad name in this country. When emotions run so high, thinking gets clouded pretty badly. :)

I really wish they'd had BoA debut here when she was still a teenager...there wasn't so much animosity towards China, plus kids and teens would be far less apt to let these things influence their thinking, and her audience could have grown up with her. But debuting as an adult performer means that people will expect adult-level professionalism. Yes, BoA can dance and sing, etc., but unless her English is damned good, she won't be taken seriously as a world-class performer.

Please, please let SM be having BoA work as hard on her English, as they had her work on her Japanese before her Japanese debut...!

Edited by hinachan, 05 September 2008 - 10:11 PM.


#12 Spark

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 11:14 PM

I don't think it's that bad... We all seen her improved over the years, and debuting means that she must have gone through more intensive training and practices = ready for the American Stage. I hope that is what SM has prepared her for...

Edited by Spark, 05 September 2008 - 11:16 PM.


#13 survivor

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 12:08 AM

i think her english really improve on THE FACE album compare to the previous albums but still she should learn more.

#14 kuity

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 01:28 AM

"I think it's because she's out of practice now, but her English was much better before than it is now. If you listen to, say, Don't Start Now or Lights Of Seoul in English, compared to Key Of Heart or Last Christmas in English, you can hear how her English pronunciation has just gone into the toilet."

Uh not sure about Key Of Heart, but I think BoA's English on "Last Christmas" was very good(I only can't make out some parts like the "blabla soul of ice" part), better than in "Lights of Seoul". I think she'll be fine with some practice. Languages tend to degen if you don't practice xD. Like how I learned German for four years but don't get any chance to use it at all..

#15 V-ni@star

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 02:13 AM

i think her english is not that bad..
as long asa she keep practicing she will get better..
i think she is improving




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