Korean girl group Rania has added famed pop music manager Larry Rudolph to promote their US debut planned for this summer, according to a statement by their agency released Thursday.
Rania, a 5-girl group initially formed in 2011 with the ambition of entering the US music market, had already signed a distribution deal with Empire Records and a promotional deal with Fireworks Management which books performances for Chris Brown. Its US debut has been postponed repeatedly since then due to a long series of changes in members, producers and management. The group is currently planning to travel to the US in May to begin preparations and promotional activities as soon as they’re done with promotional activities in Korea for their latest single Just Go.
Rudolph is one of the US music scene’s most respected personal managers and producers, having worked off and on with Britney Spears for much of the past 14 years. He has also managed other entertainment figures like Miley Cyrus, Justin Timberlake, 98 Degrees, Nick Lachey, Backstreet Boys, Jessica Simpson, Toni Braxton and Lindsay Lohan. He is also a movie and TV producer through his own production company Reigndeer Entertainment.
The new deal between Rania and Rudolph appears to have been initiated by Rudolph himself, perhaps in light of Kpop’s new stature in the wake of Psy’s monster viral hit “Gangnam Style”.
“Larry Rudolph asked Fireworks about the group and then said he wants to be part of our management,” said Rania’s agency and production company DR Music. “It is the happiest news we can get, and we know this [management] combination doesn’t come easy.”
Rudolph is expected to work with Fireworks to book the group on a series of TV appearances and events in anticipation of their US debut which will include the release of an album containing “Just Go” and a number of older singles, including an English version of one of their recent singles. The group’s introduction to American audiences will also come in the form of an MTV documentary. The group will remain in the US throughout the second half of the year to focus on US promotions, according to DR Music.
Several Kpop acts, including Wonder Girls and Rain, have attempted to establish themselves in the US pop music scene with limited success. The only Korean act to enjoy genuine success so far with American fans is Psy who burst on the global music scene last summer through the unanticipated viral success of his “Gangnam Style” YouTube video.