Key (singer)

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This is a Korean name; the family name is Kim.
Key at the fansign of Toheart in Yeouido 01.jpg
Key at the fansign of Toheart in Yeouido on March 2014 .
Native name 김기범
Born Kim Ki-bum
(1991-09-23) September 23, 1991 (age 23)
Daegu, South Korea[1]
Residence Seoul, South Korea
Musical career
Instruments Vocal
Years active 2008–present
Labels SM Entertainment
Associated acts
Stage name
Revised Romanization Ki
McCune–Reischauer K'i
Birth name
Hangul 김기범
Revised Romanization Gim Gi-beom
McCune–Reischauer Kim Ki-bŏm

Kim Ki-bum (born September 23, 1991[2]), better known by his stage name Key, is a South Korean singer and actor. He is a member of both the South Korean boy group Shinee and the South Korean duo Toheart.



Key was a varsity water-skier in Dae Gu Yeong Shin Middle School.[3] He has also appeared in Super Junior's Wonder Boy music video as an extra dancer and is known for his multilingual talents since he spent six weeks on an exchange in America.


Main article: Shinee

Key was discovered at the 2006 S.M. National Tour Audition Casting. In 2008, he was chosen as a member of the group Shinee.[4]


Main article: Toheart (band)

In 2014 Key formed a duo with Woohyun from Infinite. It is a collaboration between S. M. Entertainment and Woollim Entertainment.[5] According to the members it was their idea to form a duo since they are close friends but they weren't thinking of a musical collaboration, instead thinking of photoshoots and similar.[6]


Key was featured in label-mate Xiah's solo performance of "Xiahtic" in TVXQ's concert, 2009: The 3rd Asia Tour Mirotic, in Seoul.[7] In 2010 He was featured in the song "치유 (Healing)" on TRAX's mini album "Trax Mini Album Volume 1".[8]

Later, it was also announced that Key would have a part in Girls' Generation's song "Hwaseongin Virus (Boys & Girls)" (Korean: "화성인 바이러스 (Boys & Girls)") on their second studio album Oh!.[9] Key featured in Girls' Generation's first live album The 1st Asia Tour: Into The New World Album in the song "Barbie Girl" with Girls' Generation's Jessica Jung. He also was featured in Im Yoona's solo performance in Girls' Generation 1st Asia Tour: Into the New World in Shanghai with the song "If You Find A Cool Guy, Please Introduce Me." Also sings many American songs, like 'Firework' by Katy Perry, 'Take a Bow' by Rihanna, 'Judas' and 'Hair' by Lady Gaga, 'TiK ToK' by Ke$ha, and 'My First Kiss' by 3OH!3 with f(x)'s Krystal and Shinee's own Taemin.

Key collaborated with Leeteuk of Super Junior on a song called "Bravo" for drama History of a Salaryman. He also had a rap part in EXO's song "Two Moons" on their debut mini album MAMA[10] and BoA's song "One Dream" as the theme song for SBS 'Kpop Star with labelmate Henry of Super Junior-M.[11]


Key was cast as Frank Abagnale Jr., rotating with Um Ki-joon, Kim Jeong-hoon, Park Gwang-hyun and label-mates Super Junior's Kyuhyun with SNSD's Sunny and CSJH The Grace's Dana, in the Korean production of Broadway musical Catch Me If You Can, marking his theatrical debut. The musical ran from March 28 to June 10 at the Blue Square, Samsung Card Hall, in Hannam-dong, Seoul. On October 24, 2012 it was announced that Key would be participating in the return of the Korean adaption of the broadway musical Catch Me If You Can. The production started on December 14, 2012 and continued until February 9, 2013 at the Opera House in the Seongnam Arts Center.[12]

Key will perform in the musical Chess from June 19 to July 19, 2015 at the Sejong Center[13][14]

Key also did a cameo in SBS Sitcom "Salamander Guru and The Shadows" in episode 4.[15]

On July 18, 2013, it was announced that Key would be cast as Clyde in the Korean production of the broadway musical "Bonnie & Clyde", alongside the cast Kim Min-jong, Um Ki-joon, Dana of CSJH The Grace, and Hyungsik of ZE:A. The performance will be open at the Chungmu Art Hall in Seoul on the 4th of September until the 27th of October.[16]

Not long after, on October the 22nd 2013, it was announced that he would be cast in another Korean adaptation of the broadway musical "The Three Musketeers" as D'Artagnan. Joining Key on rotation for the role of D'Artagnan are Uhm Kijoon, 2PM's Jun.K, ZE:A's Park Hyungshik and Super Junior's Sungmin, as well as Park Jinwoo and FT Island's Song Seunghyun as special actors for the role. "The Three Musketeers" will be staged from December 13 this year to February 2 next year at Seongnam Arts Centre Opera House.[17]

According to SM Entertainment on 15 July 2014, Key has been cast as the lead role for new musical "Zorro" and he will be sharing the main role with singer Wheesung and Beast's Yoseob. "Zorro" will begin its run from August 27 till October 26 at the Chungmu Art Hall in Seoul.[18]

Television shows[edit]

Key has appeared on television shows such as Idol Maknae Rebellion as a guest star alongside his Shinee group mates Taemin, Onew, and Jonghyun, in two episodes. Together with other idol group members: Dongho from U-KISS, Shorry J from Mighty Mouth, Jinwoon from 2AM, Yunhwa from T-Max, Seunghyun from F.T. Island and in the later part, Mir from MBLAQ. Key was part of the cast of the show Raising Idol; the show was also known as 'Keydol' by his fans.

In April, Key participated in the MBC show "We Got Married Global Edition". His virtual wife was Arisa Yagi, a Japanese model.[19]

As of March 19, 2015, M Countdown, a 90-minute music television program broadcast by Mnet that airs live every Thursday 6:00 to 7:30PM-KST, is hosted by Key and CNBLUE's Lee Jung-shin.[20]

Key will also have his own show entitled "Key's Know How" produced by Mnet.[21]

Personal life[edit]

Key was raised by his grandmother from birth. His mother was sick after giving birth and his father was busy with work.[22] On October 10, 2014 Kibum announced on his Instagram account that his grandmother died on September 23, 2014. Furthermore, he stated that he wanted to announce it on his own because it didn't feel right for him to announce it through his company.[23]


Main article: Shinee discography

Collaborations and soundtrack contributions[edit]

Year Album Song Duration Artist
2010 TRAX Mini Album Volume Up "Healing" with TRAX
2010 Oh! "Boys & Girls" with Girls' Generation
2010 1st Asia Tour "Into The New World" "Barbie Girl" Duet with Jessica
2011 History of Salary Man OST "Bravo" 03:12 Duet with Leeteuk
2012 One Dream (Single) "One Dream" 02:29 with BoA & Henry
2012 MAMA "Two Moons" 02:59 with EXO
2012 Only One "One Dream" 02:29 with BoA & Henry
2014 Toheart "Delicious" Duet with Woohyun from Infinite
2014 Toheart "Tell Me Why" Duet with Woohyun from Infinite


Television dramas[edit]

Year Channel Title Role
2011 Mnet Moon Night 90 Lee Hyun Do
2012 SBS Salamander Guru and The Shadows cameo appearance

Variety shows[edit]

Year Channel Show Note
2014 MBC Star Gazing Regular Cast
2014 MBC We Got Married Global Edition With Arisa Yagi
2015 MBC Sistar Showtime Himself (Guest)

Musical theatre[edit]

Date Title Role Note
(March 28, 2012 – June 10, 2012) &
(December 14, 2012 – February 9, 2013)
Catch Me If You Can Frank Abagnale, Jr. Korean Ver.
September 5, 2013 - Ongoing Bonnie and Clyde Clyde Chestnut Barrow Korean Ver.
December 3, 2013 - February 2, 2014 The Three Musketeers D'Artagnan Korean Ver.
August 27, 2014 - October 26, 2014 Zorro Zorro Korean Ver.
January 14, 2015 - School Oz David
June 19, 2015 - July 19, 2015 Chess Anatoly

Music video appearances[edit]

Year Song Title Artist Role
2007 Attack on the Pin-Up Boys Super Junior Extra dancer


  1. ^ "Key(김기범) 가수". Naver Profiles (in Korean). March 2, 2011. Retrieved August 7, 2011. 
  2. ^ Mark Russell (29 April 2014). K-Pop Now!: The Korean Music Revolution. Tuttle Publishing. p. 67. ISBN 978-1-4629-1411-1. 
  3. ^ 샤이니 키, 中시절 수상스키 선수로 전국 대회 출전. Seoul Newspaper (in Korean). September 26, 2008. Retrieved January 19, 2009. 
  4. ^ "Shinee's iple profile" (in Korean). Retrieved November 11, 2010. 
  5. ^ 투하트 :: 네이버 인물검색 (in Korean). naver. Retrieved 24 March 2014. 
  6. ^ Na Ji Yeon; Kim Hye Won. "[STARCAST] Everyone is curious about 'Toheart, right?'…Woo-hyunXKey, unit talk". star.naver. Retrieved 25 March 2014. 
  7. ^ 동방신기,中 난징서 2만팬 열광시켜..위조티켓도 등장. CC. Today (in Korean). April 5, 2009. Retrieved April 20, 2009. 
  8. ^ 트랙스, 첫 미니앨범 ‘가슴이 차가운 남자’ 22일 ‘뮤직뱅크’ 깜짝공개. CC. Toda (in Korean). January 1, 2010. Retrieved February 3, 2010. 
  9. ^ (Korean) 소녀시대 ‘Oh!(오)’, 네티즌 “빨리 무대 보고싶어” (Girls' Generation's "Oh!", Netizens "Really Want to See the Performance"). Today Korea. January 27, 2010. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
  10. ^ "Exo - Mama". Naver. Retrieved July 18, 2013. 
  11. ^ Kim, Ji-yeon (March 17, 2012). "Boa Sings ′One Dream′ for 『K-Pop Star』". CJ E&M enewsWorld. Retrieved February 20, 2013. 
  12. ^ Sunwoo, Carla "Three join ‘Catch Me if You Can’" Joongang Daily. February 2, 2012. Retrieved March 27, 2012
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ "Cameo of Key" SBS News. June 2, 2012. Retrieved February 6, 2012 16:05
  16. ^ "SHINee’s Key to star in the musical ‘Bonnie and Clyde’" Nate News. July 18, 2013.
  17. ^ "SHINee’s Key, BEAST’s Yoseob, AOA’s Choa, and More Set to Star in Zorro: The Musical" Soompi. July 15, 2014.
  18. ^ "Key to star as "Zorro" in a new musical" Naver News. July 15, 2014.
  19. ^ Hong, Grace Danbi. "SHINee’s Key to Join We Got Married Global Edition". Retrieved 10 February 2014. 
  20. ^ "키 이정신 '엠카' 새 MC 전격발탁…특별무대 첫선". Retrieved 19 March 2015. 
  21. ^ "Key to star in his own reality TV show". Retrieved 22 June 2015. 
  22. ^ Key's tearful Confession Newsen. September 8, 2010. Retrieved September 8, 2010
  23. ^ Key's tearful Confession Instagram. October 10, 2014. Retrieved December 29, 2014

External links[edit]