KBS New York Korean Festival 2011
Thousands of Kpop fans from the east coast of USA(some, even from the west coast) gathered at the New Overpeck Park at Ridgefield Park , New Jersey on 9 October as KBS and Christine J Productions brought the New York Korean Festival 2011 to the Garden State.
Fans arrived as early as 5am just to reserve good seats to see their favorite Kpop idols. Rehearsals started at 10am while Korean food concessionaires fed the attendees.
(The audience, waiting for the concert to start)
Excitement rose up when Sistar, 4minute and G.na went up the stage to rehearse their collaboration stage “Single Ladies”.
(4minute, Sistar and G.na rehearsing)
Their rehearsal were followed by SHINee, Beast and TVXQ.
With the sun setting, attendees flock back to their seats and got ready with the concert. The concert opened with speeches from different Korean-American organizations as well as local government officials.
(The Village People)
The speeches were followed by a lively performance from the Village People. Attendees danced on their seats as they sang “Macho Man” and “In the Navy”.
The “Single Ladies” collaboration stage came up next, which gathered screams from the venue. The hosts, SHINee’s Minho, together with Hwang SooKyung, then greeted the fans and introduced his own group, SHINee. SHINee performed “Ring Ding Dong” and “Lucifer”.
When the ladies screamed for SHINee, the guys howled when 4minute went on the stage to perform “Mirror Mirror” and “Hot Issue”.
(4minute performing Mirror Mirror and Hot Issue)
To change the mood a bit, Maya sang her classic hit “Azalea”, which awed the audience because of her husky but powerful voice.
(Maya soulfully singing “Azalea”)
Although member Kikwang was not present in the event, BEAST delighted the fans with “Fiction” and “Beautiful”. Dongwoon then greeted the audience in English and thanked them for their continuous support.
(Beast performing on stage)
The hype of the audience continued as Insooni performed “Dear Friend”. Audience of all ages danced while staying glued on their seats. Screams were heard as the veteran singer swayed her hips like that of a teenage Kpop idol. The overall mood of the concert changed when Insooni sang her all-time hit ballad “I Have a Dream”. Tears were seen from some of the audience members as they truly felt the power of Insooni’s song.
Classic singer Jang Sa-ik followed Insooni with his songs that put smiles on the elderly audience’s faces. G.o.d. member Kim Taewoo followed and performed “Love Rain” and covered Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind”.
Opera singer, Hye KyungHong, pansori singer Kim YoungIm and baritone Ryeo HyungGoo came next and wowed both the old and young fans with their powerful voices. Trot singer Tae Jinah was also present at the concert.
After the classical performances, youthful screams were heard again when Sistar came back to the stage to perform “So Cool”, “How Dare You” and “Ma Boy”.
G.na entered the stage and energetically danced and sang “Top Girl”
When G.na’s stage ended, the crowed went crazy as TVXQ, 2PM, Beast and SHINee all went up the stage to joyfully sing “New York New York”.
(TVXQ, 2PM, Beast & SHINee)
As if the audience cannot get crazier, 2PM stayed on stage and performed “Hands Up”, which the audience followed and raised their hands up. “10 out of 10” followed.
At this point, the security had to double their effort to control the roaring crowd, especially when the lights turned red and TVXQ came up the stage. Deafening screams were heard and tears of joy were seen from fans when TVXQ starting dancing their sexy R&B song “Before U Go”. They followed it up with “Keep Your Head Down” and their classic hit song “Rising Sun”.
The last performer was veteran singer Patty Kim. After her performance, fans ran near the stage to catch a closer look at their idol as the idols and veteran singers joined in one stage to sing a final tribute song.
Despite the intense heat of the sun and long hours of waiting, the attendees all went home happy and satisfied as the 2011 KBS New York Korean Festival ended successfully.
Written by Tintin @ Korea.com
Photos by Chai and Lovely Lopez