TWICE is a South Korean girl group formed by JYP Entertainment in 2015 through the reality show Sixteen. The group is composed of 9 members – Jihyo, Nayeon, Jeongyeon, Momo, Sana, Mina, Dahyun, Chaeyoung, and Tzuyu – and officially debuted on October 20, 2015 with the extended play (EP) The Story Begins.
TWICE rose to prominence in 2016 with their single “Cheer Up”, which charted number 1 on the Gaon Digital Chart and became the best-performing single of the year. The song gave TWICE two major wins at the Melon Music Awards and Mnet Asian Music Awards that year. Following the success of “Cheer Up”, the group made another hit with the song “TT”.
Within 19 months after their debut, TWICE has sold more than 1.2 million copies of all four EPs and special album they have so far released.
2013 to 2015: Formation and Official Debut
JYP Entertainment (JYPE) first announced their plans of debuting a new girl group on December 19, 2013. The group was to be launched in the first half of 2014, the first girl group to debut from the company since Miss A in 2010.
On February 27, 2014, JYPE trainees Lena and Cecilia were the first two members confirmed for the group, which was then called “6mix”. Other rumored members included the two’s fellow trainees Nayeon, Jeongyeon, Jihyo (formerly Jisoo), and Minyoung. When Cecilia left the company, she was replaced by Sana. However, just when 6mix was about to debut, Lena left the company, consequently canceling their debut.
Fast forward to February 11, 2015, Park Jin-young (JYPE founder and CEO), announced that the lineup for the label’s new 7-member girl group will be decided through the competition survival show, Sixteen, set to air on Mnet later that year.
Sixteen began on May 5 and ended with Nayeon, Jeongyeon, Sana, Jihyo, Mina, Dahyun, and Chaeyoung as the seven members of the group, which was to be named “TWICE”.
Before the debut of then 7-member TWICE, Park announced that he will be increasing the number of members to nine, adding Tzuyu, the “audience’s pick” and most popular contestant on Sixteen, and Momo, who was personally added by Park saying he felt the group needed someone with Momo’s performance skills. The addition of Tzuyu and Momo to the group became controversial among loyal viewers of the show complaining about the inclusion of eliminated contestants to the group.
On October 7, 2015, JYPE launched the group’s official website and announced through SNS that the group will be debuting with the EP, The Story Begins. The EP will be promoted with the lead single “Like Ooh-Ahh” and is composed by a team including Black Eyed Pilseung, who was also behind miss A’s “Only You”.
The Story Begins and the music video for “Like Ooh-Ahh” were simultaneously released on October 20. On the same day, TWICE held a live showcase performing all the tracks from their EP. The music video for “Like Ooh-Ahh” hit 50 million views on YouTube within 5 months of the group’s debut and became one of the most-viewed debut music videos for a K-pop group.
On December 27, the group performed a remix version of “Like Ooh-Ahh” at SBS Gayo Daejeon, their first attendance on a year-end music program.
2016: Page Two, Music show wins, and rise in popularity
On April 25, 2016, TWICE released their second EP, Page Two, which includes the title track “Cheer Up”, a remake of “Precious Love” and “I’m Gonna Be A Star” by Park Ji Yoon, which was the theme song used for Sixteen. They held their comeback showcase on the same day at the Yes24 Live Hall in Seoul, South Korea.
On May 5, 2016, the group won their first ever music show win with “Cheer Up” on M Countdown, one year after the initial airing of Sixteen. It was followed by more wins on Music Bank and Inkigayo.
By August, Page Two has reportedly sold more than 150,000 copies, making TWICE the first girl group to have sold more than 100,000 album units in 2016.
TWICE announced their official fandom colors – Apricot and Neon Magenta – and their official fandom name, “Once”, on September 23.
The following month, JYPE released a time table for the group’s third EP, Twicecoaster: Lane 1, beginning with promotions from October 10 until the day of the EP’s release on October 24.
Few days before the release of Twicecoaster: Lane 1, TWICE released their official light stick, called the “Candy Bong”, which was inspired by their song “Candy Boy”.
On October 20, the group celebrated their first anniversary since debut through a live broadcast on Naver V Live where they revealed their new song “One in a Million”.
On the day of Twicecoaster: Lane 1’s release on October 24, TWICE also released the music video for the pop dance song “TT”. The group held another showcase on the same day where they performed “One in a Million”, “Jelly Jelly”, and “TT” for the first time.
On November 11, the group achieved another career milestone when the music video for their song “Like Ooh-Ahh” reached 100 million views on YouTube, making them the fourth K-pop girl group to achieve the feat and the first K-pop group to do so with a debut music video. Six days later, the music video for “Cheer Up” also recorded 100 million views. “Cheer Up” eventually won Song of the Year at the Melon Music Awards on November 19 and at the 18th Mnet Asian Music Awards on December 2.
On December 19, TWICE released a Christmas edition of Twicecoaster: Lane 1.
2017: Record-breaking success, first solo concert tour, and Signal
TWICE opened 2017 with a bang as the music video for their song “TT” hit 100 million views on January 3, the fastest K-pop group music video to do so. The feat also broke the group’s previous record set by “Cheer Up”. Later in the year, “TT” would also become the first video from a female K-pop group to surpass 200 million views.
A week later, JYPE announced TWICE’s first solo concert tour less than two years after their debut. Dubbed as “Twice 1st Tour: Twiceland – The Opening”, the tour started with a sold-out three-day concert at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium on February 17 to 19, followed by shows in Thailand and Singapore.
A day after the conclusion of their concert tour in Korea, TWICE released their special album, Twicecoaster: Lane 2, a reissue of Twicecoaster: Lane 1, with the lead single “Knock Knock”. The album sold a total of 266,645 copies in February 2017 alone.
Earlier in the month, TWICE launched their official Japanese website and social media channels as a lead-up to their February 24 announcement of a Japanese debut and compilation album set for release in June.
On May 1, TWICE released their fourth EP, Signal, shortly before they headed to Japan. The lead single of the same title was produced by Park Jin Young, the group and the JYPE boss’ first collaboration. Both the EP and the music video for the title track were released on May 15. Signal contains 6 tracks, including “Eye Eye Eyes” written by members Jihyo and Chaeyoung, and “Only You” written by former Wonder Girls’ member Ha:tfelt.
To drum up their upcoming Japanese debut, the group digitally released a Japanese version of their song “Signal”, along with a short version of its music video. The following week, they released a full music video of the Japanese version of “TT”.
On June 28, TWICE officially debuted in Japan with the release of their album #Twice under Warner Music Japan. The album consists of ten songs – Korean and Japanese language versions of the group’s first five singles. It debuted at number 2 on the Oricon Albums Chart with 136,157 copies sold within seven days of release, the highest first week album sales for a K-pop act in Japan in two years.
They held a two-part debut showcase titled Touchdown at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium on July 2 with a total of 15,000 fans in attendance.
On October 6, TWICE released the music video to their first Japanese single, “One More Time”, followed by the single’s official release on October 18. It achieved the biggest first-day sales and became the fastest-selling album of any K-pop girl group in Japan. #Twice and “One More Time” were both awarded Platinum certification by the Recording Industry Association of Japan.
After their successful Japanese debut, TWICE released their first full-length Korean album, Twicetagram, on October 30 along with its lead single “Likey”, composed by Black Eyed Pilseung and Jeon Gun. The music video for “Like” was filmed in Canada in early September.
Aside from Black Eyed Pilseung and Jeon Gun, several other composers also participated in the album including former Wonder Girls’ member Hyerim for “Look at Me” as well as the Korean members of TWICE.
Twicetagram and “Likey” debuted on top of Billboard’s World Albums and World Digital Song Sales, respectively, the first number 1 for TWICE and also the first time for a female K-pop act to top both charts. The album also charted number 10 on Heatseekers Albums, higher than Signal’s peak position at number 11. On Decemebr 11, they released a Christmas-inspired reissue of the Twicetagram, called Merry & Happy, along with the lead single “Heartshaker”.
At a press conference in Tokyo, it was announced that TWICE would debut on the 68th Kōhaku Uta Gassen, the top-rated year-end music show in Japan produced by NHK. The event was held at the NHK Hall on December 31, where the group performed “TT (Japanese version)”. TWICE’s appearance at the show marks the first time a Korean artist attended the event in the last six years. They were the fourth K-pop group to grace the event after TVXQ, Kara, and Girls’ Generation.
2018: “Candy Pop” and Japan concert tour
On January 12, 2018, TWICE pre-released their second Japanese maxi single, “Candy Pop”, with the CD single scheduled for official release on February 7.
The group is also set to hold their first Japan concert tour titled TWICE Showcase Live Tour 2018 “Candy Pop”, starting on January 19 in Aichi Prefecture.