K-Pop Comeback: AleXa on Her Big Year of Releasing Another Mini Album, Touring, and Winning the Inaugural American Song Contest

Photo courtesy of ZB Label

Korean-American K-pop star AleXa is fierce. And she’s only just getting started. We spoke to the megastar as she reflected back on her big career year. She debuted only a few years ago, but already her unique music blend and fresh performance style is hitting a nerve. She is making her statement to the world through her music videos, like mini movies that take you into the world of AleXa for a few minutes. She just had a powerful comeback with her new EP Girls Gone Vogue - and if this is how things are going out of the gate, our next question is, what’s coming next?


It can be hard to imagine a K-Pop singer getting her start in Oklahoma. But as it turns out, it’s been the perfect place for AleXa to hone her skills and launch from. She was born Alexandra Christine Schneiderman in Tulsa in 1996, her father Russian American and her mother South Korean. From an early age she was big into all kinds of dance styles, taking lessons in hip hop, tap, jazz, and ballet—a diverse combination that would help her in the future.

Then, in high school she participated in show choirs that competed nationally, then in community college she took part in theatre. Meanwhile, she was a big K-pop fan, covering songs on Instagram and Snapchat. There was a big world out there, and she was ready for it.

Back-to-back, AleXa competed for two years in the Rising Legends online audition run by Soompi. In 2016, she won first place in the dance category, and in 2017 she was the overall winner thanks to nearly 1 million fan votes. For whatever reason, she didn’t make it into either of the companies’ trainee programs. But what she did next launched her into stardom.


She signed with ZB Label, aka ZANYBROS, and was soon after chosen to participate in Mnet’s “PRODUCE 48,” a competitive audition show in Korea. Turns out, what she learned back in Oklahoma plus her natural talent was a hit with viewers.

In 2019, AleXa released her debut single “Bomb.” The official music video received 1 million views in just one day and over 5 million views in under 10 days. It showcases a post-apocalyptic world that’s gritty and metallic, but the AleXa character is up to the task of fighting her way through it. 

Overall, the K-pop scene has a catchy, dramatic quality that has taken the world by storm as it blurs the lines of language and culture. AleXa’s sounds mix the classic K-pop style with its influence of hip-hop, electronic, rock, and other genres. Perhaps because it fits into so many people’s playlists is why it’s caught on so quickly.

Photo courtesy of ZB Label


2022 proved to be a big year for AleXa in so many ways. Single album Tattoo released early that year. Soon after, she competed in the inaugural American Song Contest representing her home state of Oklahoma with the song “Wonderland.” American Song Contest is an American music reality competition television series based on the Eurovision Song Contest. 

“I was hesitant and scared going into it,” she said. “There was a big name attached to it. Going in, I was not just as a K-pop artist, but one of the only Asian-Americans there. I felt the pressure, I have to do well for myself and the community. I wanted to get our name out there and show that we can pursue things in a creative field, we don’t have to be stereotyped into certain boxes.”

Her team from Korea and her team on the show worked hard day and night upping the ante for each stage performance. It was a grueling process, AleXa recalled. The creative process of collaborating with the production team helped to elevate the stage production and choreography.

“What if we threw this in? What if we did this? We mixed everybody’s ideas into a pot. We gave each other our opinions and feedback and blended our brains together, if you will.” As a result, every stage and costume and performance was more amazing than the last.

Judges scores and viewer votes combined for a total that brought AleXa to the top of the leader board and the winner of the first ever season of the show.

“Winning was not something I had on the bingo card. The fact that it happened, I think back on that moment a lot.

Photo courtesy of ZB Label

Finally, the cloud of COVID-19 had mostly lifted and going on tour was a go. She held concerts in eight U.S. cities in October. Going on tour wasn’t something she had on her bingo card for this year, but she’s so grateful that they could pull it off.

“I had the time of my life. It was crazy flying from city to city. It was hectic. The energy down in Puerto Rico was insane and reception back in my hometown, Oklahoma, was fantastic. That was a heartwarming, fun experience. I’ll keep it in my heart. I’m very glad that artists like myself can tour and have in-person interactions.”

To finish out the year, she released her third mini album, Girls Gone Vogue, in November. This album has a different flavor than her previous. Less gritty and more feminine, she explained.  

“This whole album was definitely a process. We strayed away from cyber, techno warrior that we did with the debut. This one is more mature, chic, femme. It all somehow tied in to the AleXa universe. We definitely wanted to shift focus on what the audience knows about Alexa –power, strength, etc.”

The lead song, “Back in Vogue,” was an instant hit netting over 12 million views on the music video to date. Its glitter and glam style are a different side of her, kind of like she stepped into a portal from the “Tattoo” music video and entered a whole new world. Still very much K-pop, and lots of fun to see her dancing with other stars on her Instagram.

Photo courtesy of ZB Label

“It was really fun to film this one. Usually, we have set locations or have sets built. But this one was mostly green screen. The editing and CGI team did so much work.”

Besides an amazing music career so far, AleXa has dipped her toes into acting and podcasting, both of which she hopes to do more of in the coming years. But as for now, she’s reflecting on an amazing year—and career—so far, and hopes to keep producing bigger and better music in the years to come.