Popular girl group 2NE1 was in Singapore for their “2NE1 World Tour – All or Nothing” held on June 28.
Hours before the concert was scheduled to start, the four members -- CL, Minzy, Dara and Bom -- made an appearance at an open press conference held at Square 2 mall in Novena, reports Soompi and The Straits Times.
Close to 3,000 Ardent fans came with banners and posters. One fan was seen holding the sign asking CL to marry him while others screamed and shouted their names in a bid to get their attention.
The fans were screaming so loudly that members of the media, the host and even 2NE1 themselves were struggling to hear the questions and answers during the press conference.
Minzy couldn’t eat much before the concert as their costumes were belly-revealing. A tired Bom went without any makeup and had her shades on throughout the conference. Dara, on the other hand, was full of smiles for the fans and media.
The group members said they were happy to be making their second visit to Singapore and thanked their fans for their warm welcome.
"Our fans in Singapore are really passionate, and were running after us last night at the airport. Thank you so much for your warm welcome. We love Singapore!" said Dara, who also thanked group member CL, who produced a few songs on their latest album Crush.
"I am happy to have a new producer. We love her songs and she brings out the best in us," she said.
Hundreds of fans had already formed a line outside the mall at 9am in the hopes of getting close to their favourite band.
Ms Yi Ru, 16, was one of the early morning fans who had queued outside the mall since 9am. When the press conference started at 1.30pm, she had not had anything to eat nor taken a toilet break in order to hold her plum spot by the stage.
"It is worth it because I love them and I love all their songs. I cant wait to see them in concert," she said.
During the concert
Powering through a 21-song setlist, the quintet sang about female empowerment in upbeat song Go Away, oozed confidence in catchy dance number I Am The Best and boosted self-esteem among the audience with the heartfelt song Ugly.
Before launching into the fist-pumping track Ugly, member Dara sent out an encouraging message to the audience in English: "Sometimes you might feel ugly -- inside and outside. But don't worry we all feel like that sometimes."
As the face of the group, it's hard to imagine when the doe-eyed beauty would feel ugly.
A more blatant showcase of their female prowess was displayed in the midst of the hit song I Love You, when four Singaporean men picked from the audience were escorted onstage.
The women took control of their "hostages", sat them on chairs and proceeded to give the awkward men, who sat ramrod straight in their seats, lap dances. The daring moves ranged from Dara straddling the guy to CL hooking her leg onto another fan's shoulder.
Some naysayers argue that the bold, feminist image is a manufactured product straight out of a K-pop star making factory. But it works and appeals to men and women fans alike. Women fans outnumbered the men in the 7,500-strong crowd at the stadium.
As there was no guest star, audiences were kept entertained with videos projected on the big screen. One of them was a lengthy video that replayed concert scenes from other stops.
But the point of a concert is to see live action onstage. So perhaps the regal queens of K-pop could command their distractingly good-looking all-male dance crew to fill in for them next time.