Sana (singer)

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180717 열린음악회 트와이스 (2) (cropped).jpg
Sana in July 2018
Background information
Native name
Birth nameSana Minatozaki
Born (1996-12-29) December 29, 1996 (age 22)
Tennōji-ku, Osaka, Japan
Years active2015–present
Associated acts
Japanese name
Korean stage name

Sana Minatozaki (湊崎紗夏, Minatozaki Sana, born December 29, 1996),[1] commonly known by the mononym Sana (Korean사나), is a Japanese singer currently based in South Korea. She debuted in 2015 as a member of South Korean girl group Twice under JYP Entertainment.[2] In Gallup Korea's annual music poll for 2018, Sana was voted the 17th most popular idol in South Korea, and the highest-ranked Japanese.[3]

Early life[edit]

Sana was born on December 29, 1996 in Tennōji-ku, Osaka, Japan.[4] During her middle school years, she was scouted by JYP Entertainment employee at the shopping mall and was invited to participate in the annual JYP Japan audition held the following day.[5] She joined the JYPE trainee program in South Korea in April 2012.[6]


In 2015, Sana participated in the girl group television survival show Sixteen.[7] Out of 16 contestants, Sana was selected as one of the nine members of the girl group Twice.[8] She debuted with Twice in October 2015 with the title song "Like Ooh-Ahh" from their debut extended play The Story Begins.[9]

On the eve of Japan's transition from the Heisei era to Reiwa on 1 May 2019, Sana posted a message[10] on Twice's Instagram account bidding goodbye to the era in which she was born, and welcoming the next:

As a person born in the era, I feel somewhat sad that the Heisei Era is ending, but I want to say ‘otsukare-sama’ (Good work) to the era!!![11]

Because Japanese eras are named for the reigning emperor, Sana's comments drew some online criticism from those who saw them as lacking in sensitivity toward her adopted home,[12] as the idea of Japanese emperors, called "kings" by Koreans, remains inseparable in some minds from imperial Japan and the history of the Japanese colonial rule of Korea.[12] On the other hand, most fans defended her as someone commenting on current events, making no reference to the contentious past.[11]


Songwriting credits[edit]

Year Song Album With
2018 "Shot Thru the Heart"[13] Summer Nights Momo, Mina
2019 "Turn It Up"[14] Fancy You Earattack


Television shows[edit]

Year Title Network Role Ref.
2015 Sixteen Mnet Contestant [7]
2016 Idol Star Athletics Championships MBC Host [15]
2017 KBS Song Festival KBS Host [16]
2019 Idol Star Athletics Championships MBC Host


  1. ^ "K-POPの最注目新人「TWICE」の日本人メンバーが可愛くて美しい<プロフィール>". Model Press (in Japanese). Retrieved November 11, 2016.
  2. ^ "트와이스 "뽑힐 때 아무 생각이 없었다" ①". Star News (in Korean). Retrieved November 11, 2016.
  3. ^ "2018년 올해를 빛낸 가수와 가요 - 최근 12년간 추이 포함" (in Korean). Gallup Korea. November 30, 2018.
  4. ^ "TWICE (Profile)". JYP Entertainment – Twice. JYP Entertainment. Retrieved October 26, 2015.
  5. ^ Jung, Chul-hwan (February 21, 2018). "3 Japanese Girls at the Top of K-Pop: Taking off to K-Pop Land". Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  6. ^ "[네이버 연예] 아이엠그라운드, 트와이스 소개 하기!". Naver (in Korean). Naver Corp. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  7. ^ a b Won, Ho-jung (April 29, 2015). "'Sixteen' compete for spot in JYP's next girl group". Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  8. ^ "'식스틴' JYP의 미래 짊어질 9인, 걸그룹 트와이스 탄생[종합]". (in Korean). July 8, 2015. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  9. ^ Park, Jin-hai (May 3, 2019). "TWICE 'Like OOH-AHH' MV hits 300 mil. views". Korea Times. Retrieved July 24, 2019.
  10. ^ Minatozaki, Sana. "twicetagram". Instagram. Retrieved 19 June 2019.
  11. ^ a b Kamiya, Takeshi (May 2, 2019). "Member of K-pop idol group draws flak for post about Heisei Era". The Asahi Shimbun. Retrieved June 13, 2019.
  12. ^ a b Oh, Young-jin (2019-05-01). "Korean fans slam TWICE member for comments on Japanese reign changeover". Korea Times. Retrieved 2019-06-13.
  13. ^ "TWICE THE 2ND SPECIAL ALBUM Summer Nights TRACK LIST". TWICE JYPE. June 30, 2018. Retrieved 21 July 2019.
  14. ^ "TWICE THE 7TH MINI ALBUM 'FANCY YOU'". TWICE JYPE. April 11, 2019. Retrieved 21 July 2019.
  15. ^ "Twice′s Sana Selected as Exclusive MC for ′Idol Star Athletic Championships′". Toggle.
  16. ^ "BTS Performs Rock Remixes of 'DNA' & 'Not Today' at 2017 KBS Song Festival".

External links[edit]