Lines of fans snaked around the stadium under a clear sky as the speakers repeatedly played announcements in four different languages, welcoming international fans. Some came all the way to Seoul just for a rare chance to see so many big-time K-pop singers on one stage.
|JYP Nation poses with fans during its concert on Saturday. (JYP Entertainment)|
Park Jin-young, also known as JYP and the head of JYP Entertainment, opened with his all-time favorite song “Don’t Leave Me.” After Park’s melodic tune, boy groups 2PM, GOT7, 2AM and yet-to-debut Bernard Park appeared to loud cheers from the audience. The group excited the crowd of mostly girls, before Miss A,15& and three soloists ― Baek Ah-yeon, Sunmi and Ye-eun ― joined them.
JYP warmed up the stage with two of his hits, “Only You” and “Honey,” showing off his vocals honed over 22 years, and the 28 artists followed up with “Come Back When You Hear This Song.” JYP then passed the baton to Bernard Park, the winner of singing audition program “K-pop Star 3.” Park sang “The Last Time” flawlessly in his official stage debut. Miss A’s Suzy then joined Park on the second song, “Breakup In Daylight,” in which Park stumbled through in the beginning, but managed to save through harmonizing with Suzy.
When the mood began to turn upbeat with an array of songs by Baek and GOT7, the crowd grew louder. The seven-member group jumped around, belting out their songs “A,” “Girls Girls Girls” and “Follow Me” and then had the girls screaming at their sweet dance to “A Good Boy.” They continued, collaborating with new singer Park Ji-min of 15&, who flaunted her famously powerful yet captivating vocals with GOT7’s Youngjae.
The united concert raced to its climax when the K-pop stars rolled out to perform as a group. The four members of Miss A finally sang and danced together, setting aside their individual activities. From its latest track “Hush” to debut song “Bad Girl Good Girl,” Miss A showed off that they are still talented.
Finally 2PM, the eldest boy band at JYP, seized the stage with “HOT” and “I’ll Be Back,” as fans joined in on the choruses. The group then collaborated on “Game Over” with GOT7 and “A.D.T.O.Y” with the JYP girls, and promised to show more the next time
Sexy solo act Sunmi kept the stage alive with her recent hits “Full Moon” and “24 Hours,” together with fellow divas, Suzy, Fei, Jia and Min of Miss A and Baek Ah-yeon. The sexy concept peaked as Fei and 2PM’s Chansung performed the 90s’ favorite “Coming-of-age Ceremony,” with the tune shifting from a graceful waltz to pop and then eventually to a passionate paso doble.
2AM’s Jo Kwon revealed his six-pack in a sparkly bolero and a pair of high-heels and performed “Telephone,” originally sung by pop divas Lady GaGa and Beyonce.
With 2PM back on stage singing hits “Heartbeat” and “Again&Again,” the concert entered its finale. To the boy group’s songs “10 Out Of 10” and “Hands Up,” all 28 artists said goodbye by running into the audience.
“We will come back with better stages in 2015 so please stay tuned for news of all our artists and thank you so much,” JYP said, with all the artists standing by.
JYP Nation will head to Hong Kong on Aug. 30 after a second concert in Seoul. The “2014 One Mic” tour is to end with a series of concerts on Sept. 5-7 at Yoyogi Gymnasium in Japan.
By Ha Ji-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)