Jung Yun-ho (Korean정윤호; Hanja鄭允浩; born February 6, 1986), also known by his stage name U-Know Yunho (유노윤호) or simply U-Know, is a South Korean singer-songwriter, actor, and a member of the pop duo TVXQ. Born and raised in Gwangju, South Korea, Yunho started his musical training under the talent agency S.M. Entertainment in 2001 and joined TVXQ in 2003 as the band's leader.[1] Fluent in Korean and Japanese, Yunho has released chart-topping albums throughout Asia as a member of TVXQ. He has made occasional acting appearances in television dramas.

Yunho at Gimpo International Airport in January 2019 03.png
Yunho at Gimpo International Airport in January 2019
Jung Yun-ho

(1986-02-06) February 6, 1986 (age 36)
Gwangsan, Gwangju, South Korea
Other names
  • U-Know
  • U-Know Yunho
EducationMyongji University
Chungwoon University
  • Singer-songwriter
  • dancer
  • actor
Years active2003–present
Musical career
  • Vocals
Member of
Korean name
Revised RomanizationJeong Yun-ho
McCune–ReischauerChŏng Yunho
Stage name
Revised RomanizationYu-no Yun-ho
McCune–ReischauerYuno Yunho
Yunho's Signature.png

Early lifeEdit

Yunho was born and raised in Gwangju, South Korea. He has one younger sister. Several members of Yunho's family worked in the legal industry, and Yunho's own childhood dream was to be a prosecutor.[2]

When he was in middle school, he and a few other friends formed the dance team A+, and they competed in various dance competitions around the country.[citation needed] After winning a prize at the 1st Annual SM Best Competition in 1999, Yunho signed with S.M. Entertainment and officially started his training in 2001.[citation needed]

His family, who suffered greatly from the 1997 Asian financial crisis, were initially against his decision to become a singer.[citation needed] To provide for himself while he trained in Seoul, Yunho took up various part-time jobs in the city, such as doing snow removal in the morning and working as a waiter at night.[citation needed] He spent most of his high school vacations in Seoul training and only returned to Gwangju for school.[citation needed] Sometime later, Yunho suffered a hormonal imbalance in his throat and underwent surgery, which affected his vocal cords. After losing his voice, Yunho considered giving up his training.[3]

Throughout his years as a trainee, Yunho was put in four temporary groups - all of which later disbanded. In late 2001, at the age of fifteen, Yunho was featured as a rapper and backup dancer in Dana's debut single "Diamond", and briefly toured with her.[4]

In 2002, Yunho was selected to be a backup dancer for Shinhwa and was chosen to be part of the project boy band Four Seasons, which consisted of fellow trainees Kim Jae-joong, Kim Hee-chul, and Kangin.[citation needed] The project group was dropped when Yunho and Jaejoong joined TVXQ in early 2003.[citation needed]

Yunho's stage name "U-Know", a nickname he has been using since high school, reflected Yunho's position as the leader, who was always trying to understand others.[5]

Music careerEdit


The final line-up of TVXQ consisted of Yunho, Max Changmin, Jaejoong, Park Yoo-chun, and Kim Jun-su. The group officially debuted on December 26, 2003 during a BoA and Britney Spears showcase. They performed their debut single "Hug", which became a hit in South Korea. TVXQ have been releasing number one albums in Korea since their second studio album Rising Sun (2005), which was also the album that gave the group their first Daesang (대상), or Grand Award, at the Mnet KM Music Festival. Their fourth Korean album Mirotic (2008) was the Album of the Year at the 2008 Mnet KM Music Festival and the 2008 Golden Disc Awards. The album features the group's most well-known and best-selling single, "Mirotic".

In 2005, TVXQ made their Japanese debut with the single "Stay with Me Tonight", debuting at number 37 on the Oricon Singles Chart. They grabbed their first number-one single in Japan with "Purple Line" (2008). Their fourth Japanese album The Secret Code spawned two platinum-selling singles "Dōshite Kimi o Suki ni Natte Shimattandarō?" and Share the World" (2009), with the latter being a theme song for the anime One Piece.

TVXQ was plunged into legal turmoil when members Jaejoong, Yoochun, and Junsu filed an injunction against their Korean agency in July 2009. This led to their much-publicized departure from the group in 2010. A year later, Yunho and Changmin returned as a duo, releasing albums in both Korean and Japanese. As a duo, TVXQ set sales records and concert attendance records in Japan, becoming the country's best-selling and highest-grossing foreign music act.

Solo careerEdit

On May 25, 2015, it was announced that Yunho would release his first Japanese solo extended play U Know Y.[6] Consisting of seven tracks, the mini album includes five songs that were previously performed by Yunho during TVXQ's concerts and solo events in Japan. The new track "Burning Down" was selected to be the album's lead single. Bundled with a DVD that includes a music video and behind-the-scenes footage, U Know Y received a limited release, and was only made available for purchase to members of TVXQ's Japanese fanclub, Bigeast. The mini album was released on July 8, 2015.[7]

On May 3, 2019, Yunho announced plans to release his first solo Korean-language album. Yunho's debut extended play, True Colors, was announced on May 28 and was released on June 12 alongside its lead single "Follow".[8]

On December 17, 2020, Yunho announced that he would make his comeback in January 2021.[9] Yunho's second extended play, Noir, was released on January 18, 2021 alongside its lead single "Thank U".[10]

On February 9, 2022, Yunho released his second Japanese extended play You Go Ahead.[11]

Acting careerEdit

Yunho had brief acting cameos on the first few years of his career. He appeared in the MBC sitcom Nonstop 4, and participated in the television drama Vacation and movie Dating on Earth starring all of the members of TVXQ.[12]

Yunho made his official acting debut in 2009, playing the male lead in romantic comedy series Heading to the Ground.[13][14] However, the series was a commercial flop and sparked criticism from netizens for his lack of acting skills.[12]

From September to December 2010, Yunho starred in his first musical, a remake of the South Korean television drama Goong.[15] From November 2012 to January 2013, Yunho starred in his second musical Gwanghwamun Sonata, a story set in South Korea during the democratic movement in the 1980s.[16]

In 2012, Yunho starred in melodrama King of Ambition, playing a wealthy heir with ice hockey skills.[17] His performance earned him a People's Choice award at the 2013 Seoul International Drama Awards.[18]

In 2014, Yunho starred in the historical action drama Diary of a Night Watchman, playing a swordsman.[19][20] Yunho was widely praised for his acting, managing fierce action scenes and effectively portraying the delicate emotions of his character.[21]

For his last project before enlistment, Yunho chose to star in the web series I Order You, playing a chef.[22] The series premiered on Naver TVcast in July 2015.[23]

In May 2017, Yunho was confirmed to star in Orion Cinema Network's upcoming romantic mystery drama, Meloholic.[24]


Yunho has been given the name "K-pop's dancing king" by critics.[25] He was also the only Asian performer invited to Michael Jackson's tribute concert This Is It, and performed in the Korean leg. He trained in Los Angeles and Las Vegas with Genevieve Gleary, Morris Pleasure, and others who once worked closely with Jackson.[26]


In 2014, Yunho was named honorary ambassador of National Assembly Library.[27]

Personal lifeEdit

Besides his native Korean, Yunho is fluent in Japanese. He graduated from Myongji University in 2011.[28] He has pursued a master's degree at Chungwoon University.[citation needed]

On March 12, 2021, Yunho violated COVID-19 restrictions when he visited a bar with friends in Gangnam after 10pm. He posted a public apology on his Instagram. [29] On September 2, 2021, Yunho was cleared of criminal charges and paid a small fine for his curfew violation.

Cyanoacrylate drink poisoningEdit

While TVXQ was filming a variety show on October 14, 2006, Yunho was rushed to the hospital after drinking a beverage laced with super glue, given to him by an anti-fan.[30] The female suspect, whose surname is Ko, was apprehended on October 16. She was a member of an anti-TVXQ website for over two years.[31]

Yunho contacted the police and requested to not press charges against Ko in spite of the potentially severe consequences of what she did. Ko was the same age as Yunho's younger sister, and Yunho stated that the entire event "affected [him] more mentally than physically" while he was recovering from the shock.[32][33] Circumstances were unclear as to how the culprit managed to enter the set of the variety show.[34]

Military serviceEdit

Yunho was inducted into the Republic of Korea Armed Forces on July 21, 2015.[35] He received five weeks of basic training at Yangju, Gyeonggi Province, and was the leader of his squad. A completion ceremony for the recruits was held on August 27, and Yunho was awarded with the "Best Recruit" honor.[36] Yunho officially joined the military band for the 26th Mechanized Infantry Division on August 31.[37] He was honored as a Special Warrior on May 9, 2016.[38] Yunho was honorably discharged from service on April 20, 2017.[39][40]


On March 7, 2022, Yunho donated 50 million won to the Community Chest of Korea for Fruit of Love to help the victims of the massive wildfire that started in Uljin, Gyeongbuk and has spread to Samcheok, Gangwon.[41]


Title Details Peak chart positions Sales
True Colors
Track listing
  1. "Follow"
  2. "Blue Jeans"
  3. "Swing" (feat. BoA)
  4. "Hit Me Up" (불러) (feat. Giriboy)
  5. "Why" (왜)
  6. "Change the World"
  • Released: January 18, 2021
  • Label: SM Entertainment
  • Format: CD, digital download, streaming
Track listing
  1. "Time Machine"
  2. "Thank U"
  3. "Eeny Meeny"
  4. "Loco (House Party)"
  5. "Need You Right Now"
  6. "La Rosa" (불면) (feat. Shin Ye-eun)
U Know Y
  • Released: July 8, 2015 (limited)
  • Label: Avex Trax
  • Format: CD+DVD
Track listing


  1. "Burning Down"
  2. "Tattoos & High Heels"
  3. "Bang!" (Japanese ver.)
  4. "Tsunagareta Hune" (繋がれた舟) (Tethered Boat)
  5. "T-Style"
  6. "Honey Funny Bunny" (Japanese ver.)
  7. "Santa Revolution" (Japanese ver.)


  1. "Burning Down" (Video clip)
  2. Jacket Making Movie
  3. Off Shot Movie
  4. mini AL music introduction
Kimi wa Saki e Iku
  • Released: February 9, 2022
  • Label: Avex Trax
  • Format: CD+DVD
Track listing


  1. "Kimi wa Saki e Iku" (君は先へ行く) (You Go Ahead)
  2. "Refill"
  3. "Naifu" (ナイフ) (Knife)
  4. "Shake It Like This"
  5. "Easy to Know"
  6. "Sairen" (サイレン) (Siren)
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that region.

Songwriting creditsEdit

Title Year Artist(s) Album Credits
"넌 언제나 (You Always)" 2004 TVXQ Tri-Angle Co-writer (rap)
"Love After Love" 2005 Rising Sun
"태양은 가득히 (Red Sun)" 2006 SM Town 2006 Summer SMTown
"Sky" Tohoshinki Five in the Black
"Snow Dream" SM Town 2006 Winter SMTown – Snow Dream
"Summer Dream" 2007 Tohoshinki T
"Spokesman" Yunho featuring Donghae The 2nd Asia Tour Concert "O" Co-writer (music, lyrics)
"Wrong Number" 2008 TVXQ Mirotic Co-writer (rap)
"사랑 안녕 사랑 (Love Bye Love)"
"이별…넌 쉽니 (Heartquake)" 2009 Super Junior
featuring U-Know Yunho and Micky Yoochun
Sorry, Sorry
"Checkmate" Yunho Co-writer (music, lyrics)
"Santa Revolution" 2013 U KNOW Y Co-writer, co-producer
"뒷모습 (Steppin')" 2014 TVXQ Tense Co-writer (rap)
"11월...그리고 (November With Love)" Yunho Spellbound Co-writer (music, lyrics)
"Shout Out!"
"Bang!" U KNOW Y



Film Year Role Notes
Dating on Earth 2009 Yunho Direct-to-video
Haru: An Unforgettable Day in Korea 2010 Stunt actor Television film for Korean Tourism[47]
Chorus City Yunho Short film for Shanghai Expo[48]
I AM. 2012 Himself Documentary film
Make Your Move 2013 U-Know Cameo
Ode to My Father 2014 Nam Jin Cameo[49]
SMTOWN The Stage 2015 Himself Documentary film

Television seriesEdit

Title Year Role Notes
Banjun Theater 2005 U-Know Yunho
Nonstop 4 2006 Yunho Guest role (Episodes 62, 64)
Vacation U-Know Yunho Episode: "Cassiopeia"
Heading to the Ground 2009 Cha Bong-Goon
Poseidon 2011 Kang Eun-chul Guest role[50]
Living Among the Rich Himself Cameo (Episode 1)[51]
Welcome to the Show Himself Cameo (Episode 1)
King of Ambition 2013 Baek Do-hoon
Saki Cafe customer Cameo (Episode 11)
Diary of a Night Watchman 2014 Kang Moo-seok
I Order You 2015 Yeo Gook-dae Web series
Meloholic 2017 Yoo Eun-ho
Confession Couple Salesman Cameo (Episode 2) [52]
Tensai Bakabon 3 2018 Yunho Cameo

Variety showEdit

Title Year Notes Ref.
Kim Yuna's Kiss & Cry 2011 Contestant [53]
Dunia: Into a New World 2018 Cast member [54]
2020 KBS Song Festival 2020 Host with Cha Eun-woo and Shin Ye-eun [55][56]

Other showsEdit

Title Year Role Notes
Analog Trip 2019 Himself [57]
Book This Out 2021 Cast Member with Changmin[58]

Musical theatreEdit

Year Title Role Notes
2010 Goong: Musical Crown Prince Lee Shin Theatre Yong (September 8 – October 24, 2010)
2012–13 Gwanghwamun Sonata (Japan) Sang-hoon Also known as Gwanghwamun Love Song
Osaka, Shin Kabukiza Theatre (November 20 – 21, 2012)
Tokyo, Meijiza Theater (January 26, 2013)

Selected awardsEdit

Name of the award ceremony, year presented, award category, recipient of the award and the result of the nomination
Award Year Category Recipient Result
Baeksang Arts Awards 2010 Most Popular Actor Heading to the Ground Nominated
2013 King of Ambition Nominated
Seoul International Drama Awards 2013 Most Popular Actor – South Korea Won
MBC Drama Awards 2014 Excellence Award, Actor in a Special Project Drama Diary of a Night Watchman Nominated
Presidential Commendation 2020 National Day of Finance - Savings Day Jung Yunho Won
Brand Customer Loyalty Awards[59] 2021 Best Male Solo Artist Nominated


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External linksEdit