Who Is the Leader of NCT Dream?

SM Entertainment K-pop boy group NCT Dream was originally intended to capture the excitement and energy of youth, and as such, the group initially consisted of young members who were planned to “graduate” from the group at age 20. However, only one member, Mark, ever actually graduated from the group. Mark graduated in December 2018, much to fans’ chagrin, but then he subsequently returned to NCT Dream after SM announced in April 2020 that it would retire the graduation concept and make NCT Dream into a fixed seven-member group. Despite occasional lineup shuffles though, the group does have a defined leader these days. So among Mark, Renjun, Jeno, Haechan, Jaemin, Chenle, and Jisung, here is the full answer to who the leader of NCT Dream is.

Mark Is the Leader of NCT Dream

Mark is the leader of NCT Dream. During NCT Dream’s early years, a firm leadership role may not have been confirmed in the group, owing to the plan to continuously refresh the team lineup. Indeed, during the period in which Mark had left the group, it seemed that Jeno had unofficially stepped into a leadership role. However, since Mark returned to the group, his role as leader has become more concrete, and various news articles clearly describe him as the leader of the group.

Mark is a fascinating person in NCT Dream for various reasons. For starters, Mark is originally from Toronto, Canada and speaks native English (like P1Harmony’s leader, Keeho), but he also spent about five years coinciding with elementary school living in Queens in New York City. Mark likes to say he was “destined” to debut in NCT because the circumstances surrounding it were so extraordinary. By miraculous coincidence, when Mark was in 8th grade, his teachers went on strike for a period that overlapped with the exact weekday that SM was holding auditions in Vancouver. This strike allowed Mark to conveniently attend the SM audition that day (with his older brother, who was initially more into K-pop than Mark). Mark was in 9th grade when he actually moved to South Korea for training. Although, it is worth noting that, besides music, Mark’s original dream was to be a writer and write a book, and he still has passion for writing and a desire to write professionally.

Mark is the leader of NCT Dream at SM Entertainment K-pop
Mark is the leader of NCT Dream.

Mark was part of NCT from the group’s inception in 2016 and was part of the original NCT U unit, whose members regularly rotate according to concept, and then he debuted again as a fixed member of NCT 127 in July 2016 and another time as a member of NCT Dream in August 2016. (Then he debuted yet again on October 4, 2019 as a member of SM Entertainment supergroup SuperM.) So even if Mark were not the leader of NCT Dream, he would remain a very busy man in NCT because he remains a member of NCT 127!

However, Mark has spoken about his temporary graduation from NCT Dream before. In a Rolling Stone UK article published in April 2023, Mark described his graduation as “traumatic,” but he and the members “had to endure it and go on.” And when he returned, he was actually apprehensive about how everyone, including he himself, would react to the news. But he ultimately concluded that “it also meant we could do something as 7Dream that we’d always dreamed of. It felt like the destiny of NCT DREAM kinda, y’know, took a turn.”

In turn, in a British GQ interview publisher earlier in June 2022, Mark had described Hot Sauce, their first seven-member comeback album since his graduation, as his “favorite memory” with the group. It was because the group had felt the most connected it had ever been. He explained: “I learned, not just then, but every time I’m with the guys, that teamwork is the core to our success, and I believe there’s so much more we can achieve because we’re together. We need each other equally. We are still working with that mentality and energy together even now and will continue to keep this going in the future.”

In summary, Mark is the leader of NCT Dream, in addition to being a member of NCT 127, and he originally hails from Canada. He has a passion for not just music and performing but also for writing!

For more NCT, check out who the leaders of NCT 127, WayV, and NCT Wish are. And for more about NCT Dream specifically, check out how old the NCT Dream members currently are.

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