List of Artists Already Debuted Before Beginning Activities With Their Current Group, From JJ Project To Lee Gi-kwang

Co-Ed School


Just like its name, Coed School was a ten-member group consisting of mixed boys and girls. There were four girls: Soomi, Hyoyoung, Hyewon, and Chanmi; and six boys: Taewoon, Sungmin, Jungwoo, Kwanghaeng, Kangho, and Noori. They debuted on September 27th, 2010, under Core Content Media (now known as MBK Entertainment) and released their first single “Too Late.” Later, they released their second single “Bbiribbom Berribbom” in less than three weeks after their debut. The music video features T-ara’s Eunjung and was released on October 18th, along with a second music video for the ballad “Nae Simjangeul Ttwige Haneun Mar” (I Love You A Thousand Times).

They released their first mini-album Something That Is Cheerful and Fresh on October 28th. The album was such a huge success that the agency had received 50,000 pre-orders (when it was limited to 20,000) and increased the production. The album roughly sold about 47,000 copies.

Subunits: F-ve Dolls and SPEED

At the end of 2010, the agency announced that the group would be divided into subunits. The female members plus one added member, Eunkyo, officially debuted on February 16th, 2011, and released their first mini-album Charming Five Girls. Previously, they had released two promotional videos featuring Jay Park in “Lip Stains” and “I Mean You” (or “It’s You”).

In 2012, Soomi and Chanmi left the group and they were replaced by new members Nayeon and Shannon followed by Jihyun who joined the next year. Later, they changed the name to F-ve Dolls. However, out of the newly-added members, only Nayeon stayed and they added two new members in replacement, Seunghee and Yeonkyung (The SeeYa’s member).

Meanwhile, the six male members were supposed to debut in the second subunit. However, Kangho chose to pursue an acting career and departed from the group in November 2011, making Superstar K3 contestant Shin Jong-kook take his place. In January 2012, the agency announced that the upcoming subunit was named SPEED. SPEED officially debuted on February 14th by releasing their first mini-album Hommage to Lovey-Dovey with the title track “Lovey-Dovey-Plus,” a remake version of T-ara’s “Lovey-Dovey.” Days after their debut, Sejun was added to the unit. Later, in September, Kwanghaen and Noori left the group and they were replaced by Yuhwan and Taeha in October.

Making Independent Units and Disbandment

In the middle of 2013, the agency stated in an interview that they had no plans for Co-Ed School to reform again as its subunits have grown and changed its members. In addition, both subunits had become independent groups. Later, both groups continued with their activities and released albums independently.

In November 2014, it was reported that F-ve Dolls had been disbanded after the agency changed their name to MBK Entertainment followed by its removal from the official agency website. The F-ve Dolls disbandment was confirmed on March 10th, 2015.

On the other hand, they previously announced that SPEED would have two added members in January and would have a comeback in summer. In March, Taewoon left the group before having a comeback, making the group contain wight members including the additional ones. The first new member revealed was KI-O but the second one was never revealed. In November 2015, the group’s profile had been removed and considered disbanded even though the agency didn’t give any official statement. Starting from January 2016, the remaining members have gone their separate ways.


Following F-ve Dolls’ disbandment, Seunghee made her way to re-debut as a DIA member but left the group the following year. Meanwhile, after their contract had expired, most SPEED members went to pursue an acting career and Taeha made his solo debut as IONE in June 2016.


PRISTIN is a girl group of ten members: Nayoung, Roa, Yuha, Eunwoo, Kyulkung, Rena, Xiyeon, Yehana, Kyla, and Sungyeon under Pledis Entertainment from 2017 until 2019. They were known for writing and composing their own songs.


The seven members Nayoung, Roa, Yuha, Eunwoo, Kyulkung, Rena, and Xiyeon competed in Mnet’s survival program Produce 101 from January to April 2016. Nayoung and Kyulkung made their way to the final and got their spot in the group project I.O.I which made their debut on May 4th with the single “Dream Girls.”

On March 26th, 2016, Pledis announced a group named as Pledis Girlz. They held a series of concerts from May 14th to September 10th where the members performed weekly with the absence of Nayoung and Kyulkung who were still promoting as I.O.I at the time. They released the promotional song “We” written by Roa, Eunwoo, Sungyeon, and Xiyeon on June 27th along with the music video. Later, in January 2017, they held their last concert as Pledis Girlz and changed their name to PRISTIN.


On March 2nd, 2017, they dropped their debut teaser images. They officially debuted on March 21st with the release of their first mini-album Hi! Pristin with the title track “Wee Woo.” They released their second mini-album Schxxl Out in August along with the single “We Like.” The next year, PRISTIN’s subunit PRISTIN V debuted on May 28th, 2018. The subunit consisted of five members: Nayoung, Roa, Eunwoo, Rena, and Kyulkyung.


A piece of shocking news came from the agency in the middle of this year. Pledis released an official statement that PRISTIN has officially been disbanded. Kyulkyung, Yehana, and Sungyeon decided to stay with the agency while the other members decided to leave. | |

There are many honorable mentions of the artists who had made their debut before debuting with the current or the latest group they are in. For example, HyunA from Wonder Girls to 4Minute, Mino from ballad group BoM to WINNER, JYJ who debuted again after leaving TVXQ and SM Entertainment, and many more. Did we miss anyone here? Do you think their second debut was better than their first? Kindly share your thoughts in the comment section below!