Considered one of the biggest cases of wasted talent and potential in K-Pop, Pledis Entertainment’s girl group PRISTIN shook fandoms when they disbanded. But what are the former members doing now, just over a year since their disbandment?
Roa, Yuha, Eunwoo & Rena
If you were a PRISTIN fan while the group was still active, you likely already know that 4 of the 10 members formed their own group after PRISTIN’s disbandment: HINAPIA.
HINAPIA is comprised of Roa (now known as Minkyeung), Yuha (now known as Gyeongwon), Eunwoo, and Rena (now known as Yaebin). They also have a 5th member, Bada, who was a model before joining the group.
Back in November 2019, Minkyeung revealed that the HINAPIA members who were formerly part of PRISTIN were the only ones who wanted to promote as singers in the future.
They debuted with “Drip” in 2019, and they are expected to release a comeback sometime this year.
When PRISTIN disbanded in May 2019, Kyulkyung (who previously debuted in I.O.I as Pinky) was one of the few members who decided to stay under Pledis Entertainment. However, since then, she has become embroiled in a fierce legal battle with the company.
On September 10 2019, Kyulkyung (now commonly known by her Chinese name, Zhou Jieqiong) sent a proposal of contract termination to both Pledis Entertainment and her Chinese agency, XCSS Entertainment. But Pledis Entertainment was not willing to accept the “baseless” termination.
In a statement on May 25 2020, Pledis Entertainment argued that they had provided her with a lot of support as an artist, securing her a spot on Produce 101 where she then won her place in I.O.I as well as getting her drama roles. They alleged that Kyulkyung had since been appearing in TV shows and advertisements in China independently, violating her contract. As such, Pledis Entertainment said they would be taking legal action against Kyulkyung.
The next day, Kyulkyung issued her own statement. She revealed that her sent a termination notice due to “serious issues” with the company. She stated that she wanted things to be resolved legally without causing an inconvenience but was now willing to face and resolve the issue now.
Kyulkyung also thanked Pledis Entertainment for taking care of her in the past. Fans are still waiting for an update on the progress of the lawsuit.
Kyla had a tumultuous journey as part of PRISTIN. Long before the group disbanded in May 2019, Pledis Entertainment announced that Kyla would be taking a hiatus and returning to the United States due to health issues in October 2017.
Eventually, Kyla officially terminated her contract with the company when PRISTIN disbanded. In a Q&A a few months later, Kyla said she went on hiatus at the time due to an injury.
For a while, she was living a relatively normal life attending school in Santa Clarita, California. Fans got a scare when Kyla’s school fell victim to a shooting in November 2019, but thankfully, Kyla escaped safely.
The real good news came on June 5 this year, when Kyla revealed she’d be releasing a solo album. Watch Me Glow was released on June 13, and fans have since been showering her with praise for her bold move.
Like Kyulkyung, PRISTIN’s former leader Nayoung also shot to stardom as a member of I.O.I. After leaving Pledis Entertainment, Nayoung signed a contract with Sublime Artist Agency in June 2019.
Now, fans are finally getting to see her on screen. Last month, it was confirmed that Nayoung would be starting in tvN’s upcoming July drama, Flower of Evil.
Starring Lee Joon Gi and Moon Chae Won, the drama focuses on a man with a dark past and his detective wife, who begins investigating a cold case linked to him. In her first acting project, Nayoung will be playing the high school version of a serial killer’s daughter.
Fans worried a lot about Xiyeon after PRISTIN disbanded. She was with Pledis Entertainment for 11 years before leaving the company, which must have taken a toll on her.
Back in December, she uploaded a worrying post to Instagram, saying “Even if my lungs are being squeezed, I have to try breathing. I have to live. I have to try living.”
Thankfully, Xiyeon has since seemed much happier. And, last month, it was confirmed that she too will be making her acting debut. Xiyeon will be starring in an independent movie called Sillim Man & Woman, which was shot over the course of May 2020.
Yehana & Sungyeon
Since Kyulkyung’s termination, Yehana and Sungyeon are now the only PRISTIN members who are still signed to Pledis Entertainment. Given how the company treated PRISTIN, it’s not surprising that fans have heard little from the pair since the group disbanded.
Sungyeon, who now seems to be going by her English name Shannon Bae, uploaded a photo of herself in the studio last month, leading fans to believe that she may be getting the chance to debut solo.
As for Yehana, who was formerly PRISTIN’s main vocalist, fans have heard little from her in a long time. Fingers crossed she makes an appearance soon!