On April 24, on the “CHUANG 2021” finale stage, Bon Bon Girls 303 performed their latest single, “Slay And Play” live.
However, their performance caused controversy as netizens accused the girl group of plagiarising fellow C-pop girl group THE9’s dance choreography from their Youth With You 2 stage.
Other netizens also netizens pointed out that the “Slay and Play” look and styling was also similar to the concept of THE9 in the same stage.
The ‘plagiarised’ stage in question concerned that of a “Youth With You 2” stage from last year, for the performance “Non-Daily Revelry.” The stage was one where members of THE9 also wore ponytails, and it was considered a classic stage for “Youth With You 2”, which received high viewership from the audience.
As Bon Bon Girls is often compared against THE9, many felt that it was impossible for the management of Bon Bon Girls not to recognise the resemblance between the two stages.
In addition to the controversy over modelling and styling of Bon Bon Girls, their dance choreography was also said to be similar to that of Youth With You 2’s “Non-Daily Revelry” stage
The choreography steps in “Slay and Play” where the girl group entered the group formation in the middle of the song also similarly resembled that of the THE9 members’ performance in “Non-Daily Revelry”. Some dance steps also seemed to have been created in the “shadow” of the moves in “Non-Daily Revelry.”
As the controversy erupted, more netizens started to question whether the Bon Bon Girls were attempting to imitate THE9’s style and look. Though no official statement was released by the group to clear the air on the situation, netizens discovered that the girls had released a “secret poem” in the form of their combined Weibo post.
Bon Bon Girls Deny Plagiarism Rumours In A Cryptic Message
The girl group did not allow the controversy to continue unabated.
Each member took to social media to share what appeared to be a promotional post for their new song.
At first glance, it may have seemed like the Bon Bon Girls were just sharing messages of inspiration telling their fans to lover themselves better.
However upon closer inspection, netizens realized that the first word of each sentence made up a hidden poem in Chinese, “没参考，自成一派”. This message is roughly translated to mean, “[We] did not [refer to anyone], we have our own distinct styles.”
Some netizens discovered the message and found the girls witty in how they dispelled the plagarism rumours. Others however still felt that they did not adequately address the issue of plagiarism.
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Note: The previous version of this article falsely labelled the song as “Slay and pray”. The correct version is “Slay And Play” as mentioned throughout the article. Thank you for twitter user JinTinyyy3 for spotting the mistake.