Choi Soo-young (born February 10, 1990), most often credited as Sooyoung, is a South Korean singer and actress. She was a member of Korean-Japanese duo Route ฮธ and is a member of South Korean girl group Girls' Generation. Besides music activities, Sooyoung has also starred in various television dramas such as The 3rd Hospital (2012), Dating Agency: Cyrano (2013), My Spring Days (2014) and 38 Revenue Collection Unit (2016)

Life and career

1990โ€“2007: Early life and career beginnings

Choi Soo-young was born in Gwangju, Gyeonggi, South Korea on February 10, 1990.[2] She is the younger sister of Choi Soo-jin, who is a musical theatre actress.[3] Sooyoung was initially discovered through an S.M. Entertainment Open Audition when she was in fifth grade.[4] She later won first place at the 2002 Korea-Japan Ultra Idol Duo Audition and debuted in Japan as a member of the group Route ฮธ.[5] The group released three singles before disbanding in 2003.[7] Sooyoung returned to S.M. Entertainment and eventually debuted in South Korea as a member of the girl group Girls' Generation in August 2007. The group gained significant popularity with the release of their hit single "Gee" in 2009.[8] That same year, Sooyoung graduated from JeongShin Women's High School.[9] Soo-young has said in an interview that she was also interested in acting before debuting as a singer and had failed more than 70 auditions during her pre-debut days.[10]

2008โ€“present: Acting roles and lyrics writing

Aside from Girls' Generation's activities, Soo-young has participated in various music and acting projects. In the early days, her acting work mostly involved several small roles and guest appearancesโ€”these include KBS2's sitcom Unstoppable Marriage (2007),[11] romantic comedy film Hello, Schoolgirl (2008),[12] SBS's drama Oh! My Lady (2010),[13] SBS's Paradise Ranch (2011) and SBS's A Gentleman's Dignity (2012).[14][15] During this period, musically, she recorded two songsโ€”one trot song titled "KKok" with Girls' Generation member Yuri for the SBS's drama Working Mom, while the other one, "Feeling Only You", was a collaboration with Girls' Generation member Tiffany and South Korean duo The Blue.[16][17] Throughout her career, besides contributing her vocal to Girls' Generation's songs, Soo-young has explored into lyrics writing. She penned the lyrics for "How Great is Your Love" (2011),[18] co-wrote "Baby Maybe" (2013)[19] and also wrote "What Do I Do" (2016) for her fellow Girls' Generation member Tiffany's single.

In September 2012, she landed her first major acting role in tvN's drama The 3rd Hospital. She played a cute and innocent violinist named Lee Eui Jin, who falls in love with one of the male leads.[20] She was praised by both co-actors Oh Ji Ho and Kim Seung-woo and the viewers were drawn to her emotional scene due to her natural display of emotion.[3][3] In May 2013, Soo-young was cast in a lead role in tvN's drama, Dating Agency: Cyrano. It was a spin-off of the 2010 movie Cyrano Agency. She played a dating expert named Gong Min-young, who works at a dating agency helping people to find their love.[3] Park Ju-yeon from the Hankook Ilbo praised Soo-young for her lively character portrayal and said that there was not any "overdone emotions commonly appear in acting newcomers".[3]

In September 2014, Soo-young scored a lead role in MBC's drama, My Spring Days. Her character, Lee Bom, is a terminally ill patient who gets a heart transplant; she meets her donor's husband, played by Kam Woo-sung, a widow with two kids who lost his wife in an accident.[3] This was a breakthrough performance for Soo-young as she won the "Best Actress in a Miniseries" award at the 2014 MBC Drama Awards and the "Excellence Award for Actress" at the 2015 Korea Drama Awards.[27][28] She also sang a song for the soundtrack of the drama, titled "Wind Flower".[3] In 2015, she was cast as the female lead in KBS2's special drama Perfect Sense. It was produced by Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance to help raise public understanding of the disabled. Soo-young played a teacher named Ayeon, who is visually impaired.[3] In 2016, she was cast as the female lead alongside Ma Dong-seok and Seo In-guk in the drama 38 Police Squad.[3]

Personal life

In January 2014, it was confirmed that Soo-young is in a relationship with actor Jung Kyung-ho.[4]

Soo-young's father suffers from retinitis pigmentosa.[4] Since 2015, she has held a charity auction event called "Beaming Effect" to raise money for finding a cure for the disease.[4][4]

On February 15, 2016, she graduated from Chung-Ang University with a bachelor's degree in theater and film. At the graduation ceremony, she received a Lifetime Achievement Award as Honorary Ambassador of the school. Her fellow Girls' Generation member Kwon Yuri also attended the same university.[4]



2002Start"Start"03:23Duet with Malina Takahashi

as Route ฮธ

"Kimi Ni Ae Ta Kara... (ๅ›ใซไผšใˆใŸใ‹ใ‚‰โ€ฆ)"04:40
Waku Waku It's Love"Waku Waku It's Love (ใƒฏใ‚ฏใƒฏใ‚ฏ)"03:23
"Go Go Happy (ๆ˜Žๆ—ฅใฏใ‚ใ—ใŸใฎ้ขจใŒๅนใ)"03:58
"Onna No Ko Magic (ๅฅณใฎๅญใƒžใ‚ธใƒƒใ‚ฏ)"04:30
2005InuYasha"I Am" (Korean Version)01:24Solo
2008SBS Working Mom"KKok (๊ผญ)"03:24Duet with Kwon Yuri
2009The First Memories"Feeling Only You (๋„ˆ๋งŒ์„ ๋Š๋ผ๋ฉฐ)"03:26With Tiffany and The Blue
2014My Spring Days"Wind Flower (๋ฐ”๋žŒ๊ฝƒ)"03:29Solo



YearTitleRoleOther notes
2008Hello, SchoolgirlJeong Da-jeongSupporting role
2012I AM.HerselfBiographical film of SM Town[4]
2015SMTown The StageHerselfDocumentary film of SM Town[4]

Television dramas

2008Unstoppable MarriageChoi Soo-youngSupporting roleKBS
2010Oh! My LadyHerselfCameo appearance (Episode 7)SBS
2011Paradise RanchMiss SooCameo appearance (Episode 3)
2012A Gentleman's DignityHerselfCameo appearance (Episode 5)
The 3rd HospitalLee Eui-jinLead roletvN
2013Dating Agency: CyranoGong Min-youngLead role
2014My Spring DaysLee Bom-yiLead roleMBC
2016Drama Special: Perfect SenseEun-sooLead roleKBS
38 Revenue Collection UnitCheon Sung-heeLead roleOCN

Variety shows

2009Fantastic DuoPresenterMBC
2012Quiz on KoreaPresenterKBS1
2012โ€“2014TV Entertainment TonightPresenterSBS
2015Running ManGuestSBS

Radio show

2005M.Net Hello Chat!VJ alongside with Kangin
2007โ€“2008DMB ChunBangJiChuk Radio (Hangul: ์ฒœ๋ฐฉ์ง€์ถ• ๋ผ๋””์˜ค; lit. Reckless Radio)Co-DJ along with Sungmin

Awards and nominations

2012Mnet 20's Choice AwardsBest 20's StyleN/ANominated
KBS Music AwardsBest Female Group MemberN/ANominated
20136th Korea Drama AwardsBest New ActressDating Agency: CyranoNominated
6th Style Icon AwardsBest K-Style AwardHerselfWon[4]
SBS Entertainment AwardsNew Rookie Award (MC Category)TV Entertainment TonightWon[4]
2014MBC Drama AwardsExcellence Award, Actress in a MiniseriesMy Spring DaysWon[27]
Best Couple AwardNominated[4]
20158th Korea Drama AwardsExcellence Award, ActressWon[28]