Choi Seung-hyun( Hangul : 최승현; born November 4, 1987),better known by his stage nameT.O.P, is a South Korean rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer and actor. T.O.P rose to fame in the mid-2000s as one of two rappers in the hip hop boy band Big Bang under South Korean record label YG Entertainment . The group became one of the best-selling groups of all-time in Asia and one of the best-selling boy bands in the world.In 2010, while the group was on hiatus, T.O.P and G-Dragon collaborated to release the album,GD & TOP. As a solo rapper, he has released two digital singles, " Turn It Up " (2010) and " Doom Dada " (2013), which has peaked at number two and four, respectively, on the Gaon Digital Chart .T.O.P ventured into acting at the advice of Yang Hyun-suk , beginning with the TV seriesI Am Sam(2007),Iris(2009), and the TV movieNineteen(2009). He made his film debut with71: Into the Fire(2010), for which he received praise, and won multiple accolades including Best New Actor at the 2010 Blue Dragon Film Awards and the 2011 Baeksang Arts Awards . Subsequently, he garnered lead roles in the filmsCommitment(2013), for which he was awarded New Asian Actor of the Year at the Busan International Film Festival , andTazza: The Hidden Card(2014).

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 T.O.P's Life and career

2005–2006: Career beginnings and debut with Big Bangedit

Big Bang at MTV Fast Forward, Thailand, December 2007

He subsequently recorded several demos with G-Dragon and sent them to Yang Hyun-suk , CEO of YG Entertainment, who later asked Choi to audition.Choi was initially rejected by the record label, which deemed him too "chubby" to fit the "idealistic version" of an idol.He later "went home and exercised really hard because I wanted to join YG Entertainment,"losing 20 kg in 40 days.Six months later, Choi returned for another audition and was signed.

Big Bang Vol. 1 ,received lukewarm receptions,and included T.O.P.'s first solo song "Big Boy". The group achieved mainstream success with the release of the song " Lies " (Korean: 거짓말; Revised Romanization :Geojitmal) from the extended playAlways(2007), which topped several charts upon its release. The singles, " Last Farewell " (Korean: 마지막 인사; Revised Romanization:Majimak Insa) fromHot Issue(2008) and " Day by Day " (Korean: 하루하루; Revised Romanization:Haru Haru) fromStand Up(2008), became chart-toppers as well.

2007–2010: Solo career development, move into acting, andGD & TOPedit

T.O.P posing for an LG Phone commercial in 2009

He became the first member of Big Bang to venture into acting, starring in the KBS2 dramaI Am Sam ,portraying the school's top fighter, Chae Musin. Despite wanting to use his stage name when acting, believing it reflects his professional side more, he is often billed with his real name, with his stage name included in parenthesis.He also became a host of MBC 's music programMusic Core.

Korean television dramaIris(2009).He also recorded the song "Hallelujah" for the drama's soundtrack with Taeyang and G-Dragon. FollowingIris, T.O.P. starred in the suspense film19-Nineteenalong with fellow member Seungri .The duo released the single "Because" for the movie's soundtrack.

T.O.P performing with G-Dragon in 2011

Released as a digital single, it peaked at number two,and sold over 1.3 million downloads by the end of 2010.

while "Oh Yeah" and "High High" both peaked at number two and number three respectively.The album was released on Christmas Eve, and debuted at number onewith pre-orders of 200,000 copies.

2011–2016: Focus on acting and other venturesedit

T.O.P in 2012

T.O.P first became attached to the role because he "felt sympathy for the main character, Lee Myung Hoon."While filming a combat scene for the movie, he injured the back of his hand on a glass fragment and was later admitted to the hospital for surgery. For his role, he won the Rookie Award at the Asia Star Awards, held during the Busan International Film Festival .

"Doom Dada" earned the #1 position onDazedmagazine's Top 10 K-Pop tracks of 2013, where it was called "inviting and alienating... it's K-Pop but sly, frenetic and slippery."He later featured on English artist Pixie Lott 's Japanese album alongside G-Dragon for the song " Dancing on My Own ".

he was awarded the Visual Culture Award at the Prudential Eye Awards.Later that year, he starred in CJ E&M's web dramaThe Secret Messagealongside Japanese actress Juri Ueno . Despite being a rapper, he sang on the single "Hi Haruka" as part of the drama's soundtrack.

alongside Hong Kong actress Cecilia Cheung . The movie is scheduled for release in China.He also curated a collection of contemporary art as part of Sotheby's special charity auction #TTTOP in Hong Kong, displaying a mix of Asian and Western artists, with a portion of proceeds donated to the Asian Cultural Council (ACC) to support emerging Asian artists.

2017–present: Military service and controversyedit

and was hospitalized.On June 8, T.O.P’s mother confirmed that he regained consciousness and was recovering.

The time T.O.P had been dismissed from duty during his prosecution will not count towards his total service.

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 T.O.P's Legacy

Adrienne Stanley ofKpop Starzalso praised the rapper for his "speed and accuracy" when delivering bars.Both his solo releases – "Turn It Up" and "Doom Dada" – are hip hop influenced,with the latter drawing critical acclaim for its "lyrical rhythms [that] are both inviting and alienating" fromDazedmagazine, that declared that T.O.P was leading the evolution of K-Pop.Additionally,Billboardnoted how the song's melody "is magnetizing with its whirring synths, tribal beats, and chanting, all of which pale in comparison to the rapper’s aggressive, multi-tonal delivery of his verses," affirming that T.O.P "revealed his true artistry" with the song.

noting how "[y]ou don't divide pop music by who's doing it. We don't say, for instance, 'white pop' when white people make music."

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 T.O.P's Discography

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 T.O.P's Filmography


Story of Men 2008 Himself Cameo
Nineteen 2009 Seo Jeong-hun Lead role
71: Into the Fire 2010 Oh Jang-beom Lead role
Iris the Movie 2011 Vick Film adaption ofIrisfor Japan
Commitment 2013 Lee Myeong-hoon / Kang Dae-ho Lead role
Tazza: The Hidden Card 2014 Ham Dae-gil Lead role
Big Bang Made 2016 Himself Documentary
Out of Control 2018 Tom Young Lead role

Television drama

I Am Sam 2007 Chae Mu-sin KBS2
Iris 2009 Vick KBS2
Haru 2010 T.O.P
2015 Woo-hyun CJ E&M

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 T.O.P's Awards and nominations

YearAwardCategoryNominated workResult
2009 23rd KBS Drama Awards IrisNominated
201047th Grand Bell Awards 71: Into the FireWon
8th Korean Film Awards Nominated
Style Icon Awards Won
31st Blue Dragon Film Awards Won
Max Movie Award Won
5th Asian Film Awards Nominated
201147th Baeksang Arts Awards Won
2013 17th BIFF Asia Star Awards CommitmentWon
2014 50th Baeksang Arts Awards Popularity AwardNominated
Singapore Entertainment Awards Most Popular K-pop Music Video " Doom Dada "Nominated
2015 Prudential Eye Awards Visual Culture Award HimselfWon
52nd Grand Bell Awards Popularity AwardTazza: The Hidden CardNominated

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 T.O.P's References

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