For most of us who love almost everything about Korea, the extent of influence it has on us extended way beyond Korean food, language, culture, television dramas and K-Pop…it has delved deeper within us to the point that it has also become a part of our daily lives. Together with their citizens, we also hope for a peaceful reunification of North Korea and South Korea…for a One Korea.
Thus, in line with this, a global campaign to gain support for the reunification was started in 2015 by local NGOs. A campaign song entitled “One Dream, One Korea” was sung by various K-Pop singers and a reunification-themed concert was held at the Seoul World Cup Stadium in Sanggam, South Korea. This year, the global campaign started in the Philippines with the 2017 Global Peace Concert: One Korea in Manila at the Mall of Asia Arena on March 2 which featured PSY, SHINee, CNBLUE, B1A4, BAP, BTOB and AOA.
This is my first K-Pop concert for this year after a long hiatus since Big Bang MADE in Manila. I was really excited to take part in this event, not only because I was able to watch famous Korean artists, most notably my favorite band CNBLUE, but also because it is not just a typical K-Pop concert, it is for a good cause!
Before the concert started, an AVP of the Global Peace Foundation’s efforts for reunification and global peace was shown followed by Sam Oh introducing American songwriters and producers, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, as well as other international delegates while the audience shouted in unison, “One Dream. One Korea. One World.”
Seolhyun of AOA and Minho of SHINee hosted the concert. They are both my favorites among their group so it was really a feast for my eyes!
BAP started the concert and performed the songs Skydive, One Shot, and No Mercy. It is my second time watching them and their dance moves are still as powerful as the last time I saw them perform during Dream Kpop Fantasy Concert 2 (DKFC2) in 2014.
B1A4 performed What’s Happening? and Baby Goodnight. with their fun and youthful vibe. It was my first time watching them live and I really enjoyed their sprout dance in Beautiful Target because it was so cute!
Korean television dramas have many international followers including Filipinos so a special stage for popular Korean drama OST were performed by AOA’s Choa who sang You Are My Everything from Descendants of the Sun (starring Song Hae Kyo and Song Joong Ki), B1A4’s Sandeul sang Swallowing My Heart from Love in the Moonlight (starring Park Bogum and Kim Yoo-jung) and BAP’s Daehyun and Youngjae sang Paradise from Boys Over Flowers (starring Lee Minho, Ku Hye-sun, Kim Hyun-joong of SS501, Kim Bum, Kim Joon of T-Max).
AOA performed Excuse Me, Miniskirt, and Heart Attack. The girls interacted with the audience by doing aegyo (cute) and sexy poses. It was also my first time to watch them and I was really drawn by their graceful, cute and sexy moves. I was hoping they would perform Like a Cat which is my favorite, but still it was good to see these FNC angels in the flesh!
BTOB performed Pray (I’ll Be Your Man), Beep Beep and WOW. Third time to watch them perform live and I’m sooo happy to see them again. Of course their WoW hip moves made a lot of fan girls swoon including yours truly! Sungjae who is one of the most popular member of the group for appearing in various dramas such as School 2015, Plus Nine Boys, Guardian: The Lonely and Great God (a.k.a. Goblin) received the loudest screams from the audience when he said, “Magkita ta ugma!” At first, I thought he was just saying, Mahal Kita (I love you) but I later on learned it is a Visayan language which means, “Let’s see each other tomorrow.”
Eunkwang and Hyunsik also had their special stage and performed their own rendition of Anak by Freddie Aguilar.
Finally, the moment my friends and I have been waiting for! CNBLUE!!! The crowd chanted for them and screams got louder and my seatmates almost shattered my eardrums as soon as our favorite band appeared on stage! They sang Can’t Stop, Cinderella and You’re So Fine. It’s good to hear Jong Hyun’s voice and guitar, Jung Shin’s bass and Min Hyuk’s drums once again! Of course, their leader, Yong Hwa, never fails to be AWE-MAZING not only with his vocals, freestyle dance moves but also with his heartfelt fan service and cheesy yet witty lines! Before they sang, You’re So Fine, he got the mic from Minhyuk and said, “Manila, you’re so sweet like vanilla.” Waaaah!!!! The crowd went crazy including us! The other members were also caught off guard by his cringe-worthy line!
It was great to see them perform live again after our very memorable fangirling experience in MNET and Inkigayo last year for their Blueming album launch. Based on their reaction from the warm and loud welcome they received from their Filipino fans, it looks like we can look forward to another world tour in Manila if ever they have another one like Blue Moon and Can’t Stop. Let’s hope and pray for that fellow Boices!
Another most awaited group is SHINee! Second time to watch them but it is their first time to be performing for their Filipino fans as five. This time, Minho is with them! Yehey!!! They sang View, Everybody, 1 of 1 and An Encore.
Saving the best for last is the world known artist P.S.Y. who performed his hit songs Gentleman, Daddy, and his emotional song Father. Finally, the Filipinos were also able to dance to his worldwide hit song Gangnam Style live! He speaks English very well and was able to communicate with so much ease with his Filipino fans.
The idols performed the global peace song together as the finale. They all gathered in the stage together with the concert producers and song writers. Before leaving the stage, Yong Hwa moved closer towards the fans and motioned the other idols to move forward to the satellite stage and join him to bid a temporary farewell to their loyal Filipino fans. I cannot help but feel a deep surge of pride and admiration as I fall even deeper for him, he was really the master of fan service that night!
As all the other idols gathered together on the satellite stage, I also observed their camaraderie even though they belong from different groups and entertainment agencies, signifying once again what this concert was all about…that if music can make us one despite the language barrier, a peaceful reunification for One Korea and global peace is not too far-fetched after all.