AOA’s Unique Debut Story
1. AOA’s Story in 2012
The eight members were introduced individually through teaser photos from July 16 to 23 (in order: Seolhyun, Choa, Hyejeong, Chanmi, Yuna, Mina, Jimin, & Youkyoung).
AOA started off as a ‘transformer’ concept, which would alternate between appearing as a band (with members playing instruments) or a dance group. Explaining the concept of their debut, FNC revealed that seven members are “full angels”: Seolhyun, (Choa), Hyejeong, , Chanmi, Yuna, Mina, and leader Jimin, while Youkyoung (or “Y”) is listed as a “half-angel/half-mortal” as she is only a member when the group is acting as a band.
This is why AOA call themselves a “7+1” group. “Angel’s Story” was leaked on July 28, two days before the official release. The music video for the title track “Elvis” was released on July 30. AOA had their stage debut on August 9 on M Countdown, and then on Music Bank on August 10. The track was not a success, however.
FNC confirmed that the group would be making a comeback with a second single album “Wanna Be” on October 10. The album cover was released along with the announcement; it depicted the eight members as different fictional characters. In the later half of 2012, it was confirmed that a five-member band unit, AOA Black would perform on stage in the first week of promotions for “Get Out”
2. AOA’s Story in 2013
On July 11, it was announced that AOA Black would be making a comeback with their third single album, with the title song “MOYA.” The third single album and the “MOYA” music video were released on July 26, and AOA Black had their first stage comeback on KBS Music Bank on the same day.
3. AOA’s Story in 2014
On January 16, AOA came back with another sexy concept, and released their fifth single album (along with a music video) entitled “Miniskirt”. It was produced by Brave Brothers, ElephantKingdom, and Galactika. With this hit track, AOA achieved immense success. On February 9, AOA celebrated their first music show win with “Miniskirt” on Inkigayo.
AOA released their title song “Short Hair” on their first mini album on June 19. The album ranked No. 1 on different charts, and also topped the M Countdown chart in July. The music video for “Short Hair” ranked eighth on Billboard’s “Most Viewed K-pop Videos Around the World” for June.
4. AOA’s Story in 2015 and 2016
AOA released a Japanese version of Like a Cat on February 25, 2015; the single also came with the Japanese versions of “Elvis” and “Just the Two of Us”. On February 2, FNC released the short version music video for “Like a Cat”, and it ranked No. 1 on Gayp! views daily and weekly ranking. Like a Cat ranked #6 on the Oricon Daily Chart, and ranked #1 on Tower Records Shibuya on the first day of its release; it also eventually ranked No. 3 as their peak on the Oricon Daily Chart.
On January 27, 2016, FNC said in interview that “Chanmi, Hyejeong, and Yuna will perform as a unit group. They are planning to release a new song in February. We ask for a lot of anticipation.” On January 31st, they announced that the new sub-unit was called AOA Cream, and that they would make their debut on 12 February. The next day, they released the teasers on their official page. The title track “I’m Jelly Baby” was composed by Black Eyed Pilseung.
5. AOA’s Story in 2017
AOA released their first Korean studio album entitled Angel’s Knock with their double titled tracks Excuse Me and Bing Bing on January 2, 2017 through digital and physical platforms, which came more than four years after the group’s debut back in July 2012. Various teasers were revealed from December 21, 2016 to January 1, 2017 through a special web page designed for the group, as well as various social media networks.
On June 22, Choa announced her departure from the group. FNC Entertainment later denied the statement. On June 30, they confirmed that Choa had left the group.
In November, AOA attended an event in Icheon, where they were appointed goodwill ambassadors for the 2018 Winter Olympics.