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The Untamed’s young star Wang Yibo: an all-round entertainer

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The Untamed’s Wang Yibo – his singing, dancing, and acting career, and pro motorbike racing sideline

  • Wang, who found fame in recent Chinese drama The Untamed, has been working in show business for years
  • From dancing in a boy band to hosting a TV show to racing a motorbike, Wang is a versatile performer

Wang Yibo is a multitalented performer as well as a motorbike racer.

https://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/entertainment/article/3089757/untameds-wang-yibo-his-singing-dancing-and-acting-career

 by Celia Ong

 

Wang Yibo achieved international fame almost overnight last year through his role in smash-hit Chinese period drama The Untamed, but the 23-year-old’s journey to stardom began many years ago.

Wang first emerged in 2014 as the main dancer in the Korean-Chinese boy group Uniq, but has long since transcended his role as a pop idol. Today, as a singer, actor, dancer, host and, most surprising of all, a professional motorcycle racer, Wang has clearly grown into himself, performing each of his roles with inimitable ease.

His career in show business started conventionally enough. At the age of 14, he was already taken with street dance, and took part in the I’m the Best Dancer national dancing competition, where he placed in the top 16 in the hip-hop category.

Subsequently, Wang joined Yuehua Entertainment – home to K-pop group Cosmic Girls and ex-  – and in 2014, he made his debut as the youngest member of Uniq, a group collaboratively trained by Yuehua and South Korean agency YG Entertainment. Wang went on to promote with the group in both China and South Korea.

Although his acting career began in 2017 with the Chinese drama series When We Were Young and Gank Your Heart, Wang’s fame spread internationally after his role as the poker-faced but passionate Lan Wangji in The Untamed, alongside co-star Xiao Zhan.

 
 

He will next be seen in dramas such as The Legend of Fei, Being A Hero and Super Talent.

 

Wang has been criticised for his hosting abilities.

 

Apart from his talents as a singer and actor, Wang is also a professional motorcycle racer signed to the Chinese MLT Yamaha team. He only rode a motorcycle for the first time in 2017 and is continuing with the sport despite sustaining numerous injuries.

 

“I like riding because of the exhilaration that comes with the speed,” he said during an interview with Bazaar Men. In 2019, he won the D Category championship at the Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) held at the Zhuhai International Circuit.

 

Wang races for the Chinese MLT Yamaha team.

 

“As long as there’s a competition, I have to participate. I can’t stop participating just because I’ve failed previously. I just have to adjust my current state and carry on,” he said during the documentary Wang Yibo’s B-side Life. “I will prove to them with my abilities that I’m not just eye candy.”

 

Wang’s journey has not been without its hardships. After he became one of the co-hosts of the popular variety show Day Day Up in 2016, some internet users questioned his credentials for the role and his hosting abilities. And because of his quiet and straightforward personality – a stark deviation from the warm, extroverted manner expected of celebrities – viewers have sometimes noted his lack of interaction with co-hosts.

 

But Wang continues to prove the haters wrong. For example, as one of the dance mentors on the Chinese version of South Korea’s popular reality pop show Produce 101, he showed off his cute and personable side as he danced to songs by girl groups and interacted warmly with the participants.

 

“I hope they [the participants] approve of my skills,” Wang said on the show. “I also hope they won’t just treat me as their teacher. I hope they hold the perspective that we can learn and improve together.”

Wang has had problems with obsessive fans.

 

However, fame comes at a price. Like most celebrities, Wang has had to endure incessant attention from fans which sometimes borders on harassment. But unlike many others, he has not remained silent on the issue.

 
In May this year, he posted an emotionally charged post on   criticising fans who go overboard. “For a long time, there have been strangers knocking on my hotel room door in the middle of the night, GPS devices installed on vehicles, and wherever I go, people follow incessantly … I don’t get it any more!”

When asked about how satisfied he is with his current state in a recent Day Day Up segment, Wang replies in his usual, nonchalant manner, “Of course there are more disturbances now, compared to the past. I can’t even leave the house.”

“There are both good and bad things,” Wang adds. “Even though there may be more eyes on me now, I’m still myself. I’m still doing the same things.”

 

 

 

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