The reigning Miss Spring 2019, Manipur and a passionate K-Popper since her childhood days, 19-year-old Chanchui Khayi took the Indian K-Pop fandom by storm this year with her mellifluent performance and won the First-ever Virtual Solo K-Pop Contest 2020!


Bagging the Winning title in the vocal category from among thousands of performers from all over India, Chanchui Khayi from Manipur’s Ukhrul district sat down with KHIGH to share her passion and appreciation for the music genre that not only got her this title but also graced her life with its beautiful hues 🙂



KHIGH: Since when did you start singing? Also, what got you into the K-Pop world?

Chanchui: From when I was 6 years old, I always loved doing things that had to do with performative art such as singing, dancing, acting, and catwalks. I just did it for fun all the time😄!

Korean culture was quite prominent around me, when since I was a kid growing up but I got into K-pop only after my sister introduced me to SES, 2NE1, BigBang, SNSD (also known as Girls’ Generation) from 2007 on.


“Honestly, there are just so many groups I genuinely support. So I would happily call myself a ‘MULTI-STAN’ 😊 because from being a SHAWOL, I’ve grown to be inspired as a SONE, Say A, BLACKJACK, VIP, ARMY, REVELUV, BLINK, Uaena and by listening to various other artists like AKMU, Sam Kim, Zion -T, Dean, all from the K-pop industry! I really appreciate all artists because they all have their own unique colors and music to share.”



KHIGH: You won the first-ever virtual solo K-Pop Contest 2020 held in India, how real does that feel ;)?

Chanchui: It’s amazing as it happens only once in a lifetime and I couldn’t be happier 🤭! I’m still just letting it sink in and just processing it all for now.



KHIGH: We remember seeing your charming performance at Changwon K-Pop World Festival 2018 – Manipur Round with a girl-group, how was that experience like? How do you think you have grown since that time, 2 years ago?

Chanchui: Flipping back to that year, I remember it being my first time taking part. I had no idea how things worked in the contest but I gladly had my friends with me who backed me up every time and we supported each other along the way. We had to travel to Manipur just for the competition. Thankfully, it turned out well and we won the regionals with the support of all the judges and the people there and hence represented the Manipur region as Finalists in the Grand finale. I was definitely motivated to do better and try my very best from then on! 

One of the areas of improvement I can see from then to now is that I’m definitely more confident with my choice of songs along with my overall pronunciation.



KHIGH: Any special reason why you choose to compete in the vocals category, this time around?

Chanchui: I just thought that choosing the Vocal Category would be better for me personally as I was more comfortable in it 😄.



KHIGH: Why did you choose the track, Eight by IU (ft. Suga) for your performance?

Chanchui: I watched the song Eight by IU as soon as it came out and I just loved the melody and the beautiful message behind the song. So, I decided to sing that.



KHIGH: What motivated you throughout this journey, from taking part in the prelims till keeping a check on your nerves while performing for the finals?

Chanchui: Motivation for me throughout this competition came from the idea “If not now then when?”. 

Kpop had driven me from a young age since I was around 7 years old, and for ample reasons, I felt like time was running out. 

I had to bet on winning this year as my last try and didn’t want to feel the pain of regret for not taking the chance and opportunity that was placed right in front of me. Hopefully it’ll now take me even further to reaching all my goals 😄



KHIGH: You seem to be a well-rounded artist who can sing, rap and even dance, are you aiming to be a K-Pop Idol?

Chanchui: I definitely wouldn’t mind trying it out if there is an open door for me in that field. I believe it’s important to – TRY AND FAIL BUT NEVER FAIL TO TRY!




KHIGH: Any special message for the Indian K-Poppers who supported you and who, maybe aspire to participate and win this contest next year like you?

Chanchui: Firstly I’d like to say Thank You so much everyone for sending in so much love. I honestly did not expect it and I’m really humbled and blessed to have all of your support 🤗

And for all those K-Poppers who plan on participating in the contest, I want to convey that at the end of the day your efforts and hard work, practice, patience, and dedication will always be rewarded someday. So Keep Fighting✊🏻✊🏻!!



Many cheers for this beautiful and inspiring journey of Miss Chanchui Khayi whose ‘Never Give Up’ attitude brought her this far and will carry her much farther and higher too. Your voice will surely stir many of the desi K-Poppers to pursue their own dreams as you have. KHigh will always cheer you on Chanchui!