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Acrush redefines gender norms

Meet+the+members+of+Acrush%2C+comprised+of+five+non-gender+conforming+artists%2C+who+are+taking+the+International+stage.+Peng+Xichen%2C+Lin+Fan%2C+Lu+Keran%2C+Min+Junqian+and+An+Junxi+have+amassed+a+following+of+900%2C000+fans+-+giving+them+a+massive+social+media+following%2C+ensuring+their+prominence+on+the+music+scene.
Meet the members of Acrush, comprised of five non-gender conforming artists, who are taking the International stage. Peng Xichen, Lin Fan, Lu Keran, Min Junqian and An Junxi have amassed a following of 900,000 fans - giving them a massive social media following, ensuring their prominence on the music scene.

Meet the members of Acrush, comprised of five non-gender conforming artists, who are taking the International stage. Peng Xichen, Lin Fan, Lu Keran, Min Junqian and An Junxi have amassed a following of 900,000 fans - giving them a massive social media following, ensuring their prominence on the music scene.

Photo from Acrush’s Twitter @FFC_Acrush

Photo from Acrush’s Twitter @FFC_Acrush

Meet the members of Acrush, comprised of five non-gender conforming artists, who are taking the International stage. Peng Xichen, Lin Fan, Lu Keran, Min Junqian and An Junxi have amassed a following of 900,000 fans - giving them a massive social media following, ensuring their prominence on the music scene.

Kendell Critchett, Staff Writer

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Over the decades, a plethora of pop bands have dominated the music scene here in America and abroad. From N’SYNC to the Spice girls, the one thing that has bonded these groups is their exclusivity among their gender conforming same-sex make up. That was until the Chinese pop band “ACRUSH”, made up of five androgynous female members, broke onto the scene in early 2017, amassing hundreds of thousands of fans before even releasing a single. Their popularity grew thanks to the Chinese social networking site “Weibo”, basically like the Chinese Twitter, with over 900k followers – propelling them onto the international stage.

Their notoriety in the states is due to their androgynous style and the growing trend among youth to refrain from constructs placed upon them by society. This message resonates in China and around the globe. ACRUSH gets their name from “A”donnis, the Greek god known for his beauty and “crush”, in reference to their desire to be the crush of many fans around the globe, both male and female. The message of inclusion is put on full display by not limiting individuals and giving a new age description of what it means to be boy or girl. “We’re a girl band. But we look more like beautiful young men, not young girls,” member Min Junquian said (CNN.com). Representation has proven to be vital in establishing healthy relationships with minority groups such as the LGBTQ community, and building those bridges that forever connect the sides.

This all seems reminiscent of Peking Opera, a form of Chinese opera that came about due to restrictions placed on citizens limiting men and women from sharing a stage, similar measures were taken during Kabuki shows in Japan and plays put on by William Shakespeare at the Globe Theatre in England. Chinese history is steeped in even more androgynous figures, one most notably being Hua Mulan, a mythic woman who disguised herself as a man and joined the army fighting off foreign invaders. That made popular by the Disney movie “Mulan.”

“We’re just tapping into the unique beauty of gender neutral” – Wang Tianhai Acrush General Manager

Korean pop has played a major role in birthing new ideas of gender conformity, like pop star G-Dragon from BIGBANG, known for his mixing and matching of women’s and men’s fashion. South Korea has been on the forefront of pushing social norms in terms of makeup, clothing, and hair. Leaving those that don’t understand this growing genre to make the same criticism once used in the past, about hippies in the 60s, Disco in the 70s, and glam rock of the 80s.

The music of ACRUSH is surprisingly progressive considering the region of the globe it originates from. It could easily be compared to a dance track produced by any Western producer or current artist. The image that ACRUSH portrays is one that isn’t synonymous with China, and their stance on the LGBTQ community. “We’re just tapping into the unique beauty of gender neutral,” said Wang Tianhai (reported by CNN.com), echoing the sentiment that one’s identity doesn’t have to be so easily defined and put into a box. Her statement gives millions of people around the world someone to look to for reassurance, and it ultimately inspires a whole new generation free of such archaic social confines.

Some may feel this is just a publicity stunt, however many of the members identify and dress as they do now on stage, expressing their comfort in clothes usually marketed for men. Regardless, the message this is sending is one that is sure to be received well across the globe.

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Acrush redefines gender norms