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Day6: Defying Gravity

WITH AT least two of Korea’s rock bands currently on hiatus, there is a clamor for musicians to fill the void. The members of CNBLUE and FTIsland are serving the military and audiences worldwide are craving for more talents to step up to the plate and provide the kind of music that these two established bands are known for.

Getting into GOT7

WHEN GOT7 visited Manila for the first time in December 2014, the group was still “newly minted,” having been launched only a few months earlier by JYP Entertainment.

Klook x K-pop

A TIE-UP between Klook and Korean pop may appear like an unlikely partnership. One is an online provider of various in-destination services while K-pop is the entertainment genre that has captured the fancy of audiences worldwide.

Where The BOYZ are

THERE are basically two types of Korean pop events held regularly in Manila — concerts and fan meetings. Presumably to get the best of both worlds, the 12-member group The Boyz combined the two concepts to come up with a “fan-con” tour in Asia dubbed as The Castle.

Boyzone, signing off

FANS OF 1990s boy bands died a little inside when Boyzone finally said goodbye after more than 25 years of performing and touring. But the group was not about to go out without a bang and delivered what was arguably a fitting finale show where they sang all their greatest hits, leading the entire SM Mall of Asia Arena to reminisce on the period that was.

TWICE the excitement, double the fun

EVEN WITH the deluge of Korean boy bands holding concerts and fan meetings in Manila, there is a dearth of K-pop girl groups performing in some of the biggest venues in the country. The last all-ladies team to stage a concert at the SM MOA Arena was the now-defunct 2NE1, with Sandara Park, in May 2014. Early this year, Momoland had a fan meeting at the Smart Araneta Coliseum while six-member GFRIEND opted for the more intimate New Frontier Theater for its own concert in August 2018.

Enjoying a festival of friendship

AS THE Philippines and Korea commemorated the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations, yet another festival was held recently to celebrate the close ties between the two countries.

The wide awakening

Insofar as weird concert titles go, Dreamcatcher’s Invitation from Nightmare City is one of the most unusual. A play of words inspired by the K-pop group’s debut album, Nightmare, and the resulting trilogy following the “dream” concept, the concert series was hardly horrific but was a pleasant showcase of the talent of the all-girl band.

Winner takes it all

TELEVISION TALENT contests may be either a boon or a bane for budding Korean artists. While many proceed to make a name for themselves after the competition, some have fallen into oblivion after their 15 minutes of fame.

A new look at Beethoven

FOR ITS past few concerts, the Manila Symphony Orchestra (MSO) has been focusing on very popular music: Rockestra 2018 mixed classical and rock music, playing “orchestra-fied” works of Metallica and AC/DC, while Silver Screen Symphonies featured music from beloved movies like Star Wars and The Lion King.

Singing along with Per Sorensen

WE WERE ON EDSA some time in the 1990s when dad played the album Fra Lippo Lippi’s The Virgin Years: Greatest Hits (1997) on the car’s stereo system, the New Wave music filling the space as we made our way home. That is how I was introduced to the unique sound of the Norwegian duo whose group name I did not know then — not until I found the old album hidden deep in a shelf in my early teens.

Iconic iKON

UNLIKE IN beauty pageants, the “spare tire” principle does not apply to reality shows. The winner usually proceeds to sign the hefty, multi-year, exclusive contract, receive all the accolades, and, for all intents and purposes, makes the runner-up eat dust.

Championing K-pop

AS THE dispute with Beijing over the deployment of a US anti-missile system in South Korea is still unresolved, the Korean music industry is constantly looking to expand its market to countries outside China. The two-year security-related spat has resulted not only in the dwindling of Chinese tourists going to Seoul but also in China effectively banning Korean artists and producers of Korean dramas and films from its territory. To fill the void, K-pop producers have trained their sights on Southeast Asian countries to sell their talents.

An Ideal Cut above the rest

SOME KOREAN pop groups — no matter how popular — have performed in the Philippines only once and without an insistent demand, they never managed to return. Not so in the case of the 13-member group, Seventeen, which can now boast of a three-sold-out-concert streak in Manila, a feat that only equally phenomenal bands such as BTS, EXO, and Super Junior have managed.

The orchestra goes to the movies

ANYBODY who is into movies would appreciate Silver Screen Symphonies, performed by the Manila Symphony Orchestra (MSO) at the Theatre at Solaire.

Once with Wanna One

KOREAN SURVIVAL reality shows have spawned a new breed of K-pop idols — the kind that has a limited “shelf life.”

Korean greats amidst the chaos

THE FRENZY that accompanied the visit of K-pop group, MOMOLAND, to the Philippines over the weekend overshadowed the arrival of three of Korea’s best singers.

Rockin’ the orchestra

ROCKESTRA 2018, performed at The Theatre at Solaire was a historic moment for the Manila Symphony Orchestra (MSO) as it was their first attempt to play a full concert dedicated to rock-classical fusion music.

Loving Celine Dion even more

IT WAS a weekend morning in the late 1990s when a familiar piano introduction (in C major) blared into the room and woke this writer (who was then probably in kindergarten) from her sleep. “I know this song. I’ve heard it before,” I thought. I got up and hurried to the shelf beside the stereo system (where Dad would usually place his newly purchased CDs) and saw an album cover with a woman wearing a white shirt and denim pants, her hair in a pixie cut. The singer’s voice was captivating. From then on, I continued to listen to her songs — playing them loud and singing along as if it were a live concert.

Seungri goes solo

THE PECULIARITY with male Korean pop groups is that at some point in their career, the band will go on hiatus. By force of circumstances — or more aptly, due to the mandatory military service required of able-bodied adult male Koreans — groups either go on an involuntary 24-month respite or perform as an incomplete unit or members pursue solo careers while waiting for their band to regroup.

John Legend’s night of love

By Michelle Anne P. Soliman Concert Review Darkness and Light Asia John Legend AS THE seats continued to be filled with guests, the lights dimmed at half past...