K-pop sensation EXO won a top prize at the 23rd Seoul Music Awards on Thursday, outshining 12 competitors including SHINee, Cho Yong-pil and Girls’ Generation.
The idol group also earned awards for the main prize and Digital Song of the Year at the ceremony held at Jamsil Indoor Stadium in Seoul.
“EXO had a tense and difficult year in 2013, but we were happy that we could be with our fans,” said Sooho, team leader of the idol group, expressing his gratitude to his fans and colleagues at SM Entertainment, the group‘s agency.
Another popular K-pop boy band SHINee, which debuted in 2008, four years before EXO, lost the top prize, but won three awards for explosive popularity from fans and their special contribution to the hallyu boom, also known abroad as the Korean Wave.
Long-running star Cho Yong-pil, seen as EXO’s strongest rival in the competition, won the Record of the Year award for “Hello,” his 19th full-length album in 10 years, which was well received by fans of all ages.
EXO, a South Korean-Chinese boy band consisting of 12 members, has enjoyed growing popularity here and in China since making an official debut in early 2012.
Their first full-length album “EP Mama” and repackaged album “XOXO” has sold more than 1.4 million copies worldwide, according to the Gaon chart.
The idol band earned numerous honors in 2013-2014, including Album of the Year at the Mnet Asia Music Awards, song of the year at the Melon Music Awards for their song “Growl,” and top prize at the Golden Disk Awards.
By Ock Hyun-ju, Intern reporter (email@example.com