Sunday, November 29, 2009

SS501 Persona Tour Shanghai - Sidelights

The last fangirl trip in Shanghai has tested my fangirl skills and maturity. One of the things that fangirls do is STALK.

When we arrived in Shanghai, stalking was not discussed as a must. We were happy to look at Hongkou Stadium ( by day. Even if we were not expecting to see the men rehearse, we still went to the stadium on Nov 13th just to find our way and not to get lost on concert day itself.

In the light (or gloom) of day, Hongkou was buzzing with activity. We were sidetracked a bit by the sidewalk sale going on. In a short span of time, Ems was able to buy a pair of boots, mittens and other pasalubong. Another thing that fangirls does is SHOP FOR MERCHANDISE . I was surprised that we did not do that right away but checked out what the local vendors were offering. Is that a sign of maturity? :)

One of the things that we were happy to see was the big concert billboard beside the stadium. We realized that we were looking at the ticket sales window. The I realized that we forgot to get our photo taken below this big billboard. Many overseas fans especially the Japanese were taking photos earlier. Are my fangirl skills in CAMWHORING getting stale? :(

During concert night, we were so happy that we were very close to the center stage and catwalk. Julie and I studied past Personas and realized that many of our fave songs especially the ballads were sung in the middle stage and catwalk so we bugged my brother-in-law Ramon to make sure we get seats near that area. Wasn't that a very skillful move? :)

And of course let us not forget what fangirl do all the time - BUY CONCERT MERCHANDISE! Surprisingly I kept to my budget. I only got the official photobook. Did I just become a mature fangirl? :)
Fangirls usually go crazy over unofficial merchandise. I actually only bought the ecobag, calendar and green light stick. The rest of the stuff in the photo below are gifts from Ssangchu Chinese fans who we bumped into after the concert. Is this another sign of maturity? :)

Or not? Because I couldn't resist buying the Boys Over Flower OST, Dong Bang Shin Ki's Rising Sun concert dvd and Close to you single (because Yunho is the featured member photo at the back cd cover). So I guess I am not yet as mature as I thought I would be? :)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

SS501 1st Asia Tour Persona in Shanghai 2009

Nothing beats a broken heart than a trip to Shanghai, China to watch the concert of my korean fandom flagbearers - SS501. Why I was broken hearted is another story though. It was basically the reason why I was not in the mood to post for quite a while.

Anyhow, last November 12th, I flew to Shanghai with fellow fangirls Julie and Ems. Our main objective was to watch the Persona Tour Shanghai stop of our favorite Korean group SS501. The 3 of us were adopted by my sister Teng and her husband Ramon.

As soon as we woke up the morning after we arrived, we embarked on our 1st adventure. Check out Hongkou Football Stadium, the venue of the concert. Despite this being my 3rd visit to Shanghai, it was my first time to take the Shanghai Metro. Nothing to it! We found the stadium without getting lost. :) We even had the time to shop for unofficial goods and crazy stuff like purple toilet seat covers (more on my next post). What we were not prepared for is the weather! 7 degC with high wind chill factor!!

So on concert day itself, Saturday, November 14th, we made sure that we were warmly dressed and ready for rain.

Hongkou Stadium at night is beautiful. The lights gave the place a commanding presence in the area with a capacity for around 30,000 people. Once inside the stadium, we were happy to see that our seats though not the most expensive, is the most strategic! We were near the center stage and catwalk! I couldn't contain my excitement because we will be able to see the boys without any difficulty.

Armed with our green light sticks, we braved the sea of chinese fans and found our seats. Our greatest discovery is that the chinese fans are so friendly and were surprised that foreign fans like us were in their midst. And they attempted to speak to us in English!

I have seen video clips of Persona from Seoul to Tokyo up to Taipei but nothing beats the feeling of seeing it live and in person. When the stage lit up with the opening number of Deja Vu, I couldn't help but scream by brains out. The boys, the boys are singing and dancing before my eyes. Well, almost before my eyes. Despite the welcoming smiles of the chinese fans, their concert viewing habits are not as welcoming. They were standing on the seats and we couldn't see the boys among the sea of light sticks, light boards and cameras.

We are not resilient Filipinos for nothing! With Julie's construction expertise, we put together a double-layer chair with yours truly precariously perched on top. I can now see everything!!!

I loved the numbers especially Four Chance and the tango arrangement of the song. I loved it that they sang half of their songs in the second stage and catwalk! They were so near!! And all of the boys were sooo pleasant and smiling. The energy level was so high even Kim Hyun Joong! :)

When Park Jung Min popped out from the riser at the edge of the catwalk, I screamed so loud that I think Jung Minnie heard it. He sang so well live especially the mandarin song wo de pengyou.

Another surprise was Heo Young Saeng. He exuded a quiet sexiness singing his solo song Nameless Memory. No wonder my other friend (and soon to be business colleague) Pin became enamored with his presence! :)

Of course maknae Kim Hyung Jun sings so well. He has the most distinct voice among the boys in my opinion. You will always know its him. He is still such a baby though even when he was trying to be manlier in his solo number.

My Kyu - my Kim Kyu Jong was the most hyper that night. Only later did we find out that he was sick. Way to go Kyu Jong! Among the 5 boys, Kyu is a "kyutie" that one will appreciate only when in person. His rapport with fans was so good. He seems to have lost weight but his solo number was still sexy. I can still remember his black wifebeater!

Of course the highlight for me was seeing with my own two eyes Kim Hyun Joong leader's solo Please Be Nice To Me. I did not expect him to show some skin but despite the freezing temperature and the plea of the chinese fans, he still did! That professionalism to stick to the show's flow despite the open air cold condition made me admire him more and made the trip so worth it.

The evening was even made more fun and memorable when the boys sang songs from their latest mini-album Rebirth. I was awed at the thought that I have seen them perform Love Like This live. Especially since the boys won their 1st Music Bank win for the song that day. We were screaming at the point of no return when the boys walked again to the center stage and sang Only One Day. They were soooo near!

My throat locked up when they even came nearer and sang Wang Du Ko. They were just a couple of meters away sitting on chairs that were slowly spinning for everyone to see them. Have you guys tried screaming with no sound coming out?! hahaha!

So when the encore part came and the boys came out in Persona in Shanghai t-shirts, I was dancing wildly in my chair - oops! I forgot I was perched on 2-levels. Without any care that my 43-year old body may fall anytime, I kept dancing to their classic hits Coward and Bye bye Baby Bye.

The memory of all of them running around near our area was so fresh still even after a week and now back to my daily life. Hyun Joong's pink ears was sooo cute, Kyu Jong's hyper dancing and running around with his Kyu's light board, Baby's funny animal headgear, Saengie in a red cap and Jung Min's bright smile, made me forget the chill of the Shanghai evening.

Congratulations to SS501 for a successful show. It made your 7,000 plus audience the happiest grean peas on earth. And it will surely make your TripleS grow and grow. Just keep being your happy and hard working selves and you'll go more places.

And I will most probably go with you..

Sunday, November 8, 2009

SS501 Event Survey

Did you guys watch Boys Over Flowers at ABS-CBN?

Did you like Jihoo sunbae? Jihoo sunbae is Kim Hyun Joong in real life.

Did you know that Hyun Joong is a multi-talented guy and that he belongs to this really cool group called SS501 (pronounced Double S 5-0-1)?

Did you know that SS501 is one of the most popular groups in Korea? And if you watched Boys Over Flowers, did you know they sang one of the most popular theme songs of the drama called Because I'm Stupid?

Did you know that the rest of SS501 are also multi-talented guys who does a variety of things like host a radio program, MC variety shows and are now venturing into acting? They are Kim Hyun Joong, Heo Young Saeng, Kim Kyu Jong, Park Jung Min and Kim Hyung Jun.

Did you know that currently SS501 is doing their 1st Asian Tour called Persona and have already performed concerts in Seoul, Tokyo, Taipei and this week in Shanghai and Hongkong in December?

The fans of these guys are wishing that they'd make Manila one of their stops. Do you want it to happen too?

Then please answer this survey to see if we really can make it happen. You do not need to fill up all information but we will appreciate it very much if you do. And what's in it for you if you do spend time to answer the survey? - You will be the first to know the details, the first to buy tickets and therefore choice seats. It is the organizer's way of showing their appreciation for the help.

So here is the link:

Please send the link to your friends who are not really online much but like to see the group as well.

Thank you and here is our battlecry:

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Growing Collection

It started with this...

And then these came along soon...

My collection is growing and growing. When I discovered SS501 earlier this year, I never thought I would be hooked as much as I was hooked with my other fandoms.

When the Solo collection cd came out, it was such good timing that Kai, one of my ohana was in Korea. Then my brother-in-law Ramon went to Korea during the time I was obsessing about Photo 501. UR Man was an additional blessing from him.

And then the Taiwan versions of older cds were released in the Philippines - all at the same time!

And the latest album, Rebirth just happened to arrive from Korea. I am waiting for the Taiwan version still. :)

The collection just keeps growing and growing...