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[Herald Review] Dance fever continues at ‘Street Woman Fighter’ reunion concert

Eight female dancers from Mnet’s “Street Woman Fighter” perform on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
Eight female dancers from Mnet’s “Street Woman Fighter” perform on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
After seeing phenomenal success with Mnet’s dance survival show “Street Woman Fighter,” female dance crews from the program returned over the weekend with more powerful and dynamic performances for a reunion show at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park.

The two-day event “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” was a treat for the audience and also a chance for the eight top-tier dance crews -- YGX, Lachica, Want, WayB, Coca N Butter, Prowdmon, HolyBang and Hook -- from the program that aired in August last year to gather. It was the first time all teams took to the stage since their concert last November and December, as the government lifted all COVID-19 social distancing rules.

Frankly speaking, the reporter was unsure how they would handle the 150-minute show with dance performances only. But there was nothing to worry about. The Sunday concert, which was open to the press, was a whole package of explosive energy and mesmerizing gigs, once again living up to the buzz the veteran dancers had created last year.

As the clock struck 6 p.m., the eight teams -- a total of 50 dancers -- appeared on stage one by one to much fanfare. They were welcomed by about 3,000 screaming concertgoers who waved their light sticks in excitement.

Want performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
Want performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
The dancers kicked off the show with “Do The Dance,” the song which they had collaborated on with legendary soloist Lee Hyo-ri at the 2021 Mnet Asian Music Awards. Then each team took their turn in the spotlight. Crew members from Want went first, although team leader Hyojin Choi could not participate in some of the performances due to her ankle injury.

“Unlike the survivals we had (on the program), it feels like we’re finally at a festival venue. I’m so honored and grateful to be onstage with all the crews that I met through the dance battles,” the Want leader said. “Since I’m still injured, I had to let go of my greed. I’ll be back with the perfect performance later in the day.”

Decked out in all-black outfits, crew Prowdmon put on a performance of “Tell Me Now,” which the dancers created in the second season of Mnet’s popular competition program “Queendom.” WayB’s No:ze, who was recently embroiled in a controversy over sponsored posts on her Instagram account, also participated in the two-day concert.

HolyBang performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
HolyBang performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
One-on-one dance battles followed after each crew’s performance. Unlike the fierce dance battles that were shown on “Street Woman Fighter,“ the dancers seemed more relaxed during the reunion show. Concertgoers voted and selected the winners in the dance battles. Dancers’ autographed photo cards were hidden underneath the audience’s seats as a surprise gift.

Eight male dance crews -- 1Million, BIIB, Eo-ddae, JustJerk, Prime Kingz, We Dem Boyz, YGX, Mbitious -- who will appear as contestants in the upcoming dance competition program, “Street Man Fighter,” attended the concert and danced to a series of K-pop hits such as EXO-K’s “Overdose,” Big Bang’s “Bang Bang Bang,” Seventeen’s “Clap” and BTS’ “Fire.”

Hook performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
Hook performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
The “Street Woman Fighter” dancers also mixed up the teams for certain performances and wrapped up the event with some of their most well-known choreographies, such as “24K Magic,” “Hey Mama” and “Stay.”

Coca N Butter leader Ri.hey said, “Although it’s been a while since the program ended, I’d like to deeply thank those who came to see us. Because of all of you, I had a good memory.” Honey J, the leader of HolyBang, also mentioned that the dancers’ popularity was able to last this long thanks to the fans’ endless support.

Prowdmon performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
Prowdmon performs on stage at “Street Woman Fighter Reunion: The Next Era” held at the SK Olympic Handball Gymnasium at Seoul’s Olympic Park, Sunday. (Mnet)
No:ze, who did not speak about her recent controversy, burst into tears at one point. Moved by the audience’s cheers, she said, “I will probably live with this memory forever. ... I just want you to know that we are not the people who don’t make effort.” Hook’s leader Aiki lightened up the atmosphere by pretending to wipe the dancer’s tears with her tie, which drew the audience’s laughter.

By Jie Ye-eun (yeeun@heraldcorp.com)
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