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..


Anonymous said...

im with you too ate gi! :)
not only did the boys conquered shanghai... but i think we did too as well!
so till our next double s adventure?! hwaiting!!!

Anonymous said...

7,000+ audience? Does that heard the arena was largely empty for the concert? Because, I heard the arena was 80% filled and ticket vendors were selling tickets at the last minute for a cheaper price. Is it true?

marge0256 said...

OMCHEE. I was happy to read this. Seriously. I almost cried ate Gi. Actually I cried. Nag sisink in na sa akin. Na I'm seeing them in person na talaga. For real too. Haha.

Cheers for Dabal Es conquering asia, and Cheers to all of you conquering it as well :)

Take care!

GIGI said...

Hey JULE! Yep, until our next double S adventure. Hwaiting! Let's conquer another city. :)

GIGI said...

Hi Anonymous! The stadium is huge. They only set up on half of the stadium. Then 1/3 of the set-up cannot have audience because of the stage. So that leaves about 10,000 seats. The expensive tickets near the stage is filled. The stands are not as filled up. If we estimate that's roughly 7,000+ people. I think the scalpers bought the tickets hoping to make a profit. Good for the fans if the tickets were sold cheaper. More opportunity to watch.

GIGI said...

Hi MARGE! Thanks for dropping by. And i'm happy that you will see them soon. Don't lose your wits kasi baka malimutan mong huminga! hahaha! Take care!

Karren168 said...

Hi Gigi! Karren here, we met at TripleS Ph meet-up at Congo Grille... i soo love your blog site... not just your entries re our SS501 MEN, but also your travel blogs...

Just reading your blog re Persona Shanghai makes me feel so excited... feeling ko i was also there... so wish i can also watch Persona & see the Men in person...

Thanks for sharing & take care :)

GIGI said...

Hi Karren! Of course I remember you. Thanks for dropping by my blog and liking my travel blogs. Of course we all know who our common loves are *winks* Keep coming back. :)

naomz said...

wow awesome! i'm happy for you! sayang at nakalimutan mo bumili ng bunny ears! but that's one helluvan experience! =)

GIGI said...

Hi NAOMZ! I actually did not forget to buy the bunny ears..hehehe... hindi na bagay saken! :)

marge0256 said...

Ate GIGI! Binasa ko yung latest post mo, and itong post mo na to. Feel ko nagmature ka in a way, kahit di ako ganun kafamiliar sa buhay fangirl na pinagdaanan mo. :)

Nakakexcite nga. Pero di ako too excited. Siguro kasi di pa super nagsisink in. HAHA! Baka magkasakit ako, at mag LBM sa excitement pag nagkataon. Kailangan ko nga maalala huminga for sure. Kasi habang papalapit na. nafeefeel ko na "THIS IS IT!". haha! See you tom, if ever!

GIGI said...

MARGE, almost a year too late na etong reply ko sa comment mo but I just wanted to say that thank you. Ang dami na nating pinagdaanan. In fact, reason why I have not blogged in a long time kasi puro sakit ang nadaan ko sa k-pop which I have never felt in my j-pop and c-pop fandom. Pero fighting! Tuloy ang buhay fangirl.:D