Date: August 17, 2018
Venue: Staples Center
Organized By: CJ E&M
Saturday, August 17, 2019, embarked KCON LA’s first night concert with guest line up AB6IX, ATEEZ, IZ*ONE, LOONA, MOMOLAND, SF9 and NU’EST.
Danny Lim was this year’s pre-show host who introduced to the fans the first opening performance for that night. Each year KCON LA brings K-pop dance cover groups together to compete in a dance cover contest. The winning dance group will be able to perform during pre-show in front of all the fans attending both nights. This year dance cover group “SEOULA” which consist of 8 dancers; Nicole Chun, Jadyne Dela Vega, Jorge Kcomt, Natalie Ceciliano, Ria Julian, Matthew King, Tia McArtis, and Karen Zheng won first place and performed a fantastic cover of rookie group ATEEZ’s “Hala Hala”. Their powerful movements and stage presence was truly felt and gained a massive reaction from the entire audience! You can definitely tell that this group came to prove that they deserved the KCON stage. For more K-pop covers of SEOULA check out their Youtube Channel here.
Check out their dance cover of ATEEZ “Hala Hala” below.
Next up was a soon-to-debut group from a global idol project named “World Klass” consisting of 20 members. In the end only 10 final members will make the cut to debut and be officially named “TOO(Ten Oriented Orchestra)”. The word “TOO” carries the meaning of 10 boys’ aspiration to implement the orient values into western music. Splitting up into two groups, World Team (Red) performed “Bad Guy” by Billie Ellish and Klass Team (Blue) performed “What do you mean?” by Justin Bieber. At the end of their performances Vlive opened up a voting poll to see who was the best performer, only attendees who came to Saturday night’s KCON was eligible to vote for their favorite group. The group who scored the highest had a better chance of making it into the final line up.
With Danny Kim wrapping up his final MC notes of how tonight’s KCON was going to be nothing but spectacular, the lights dimmed as a video played overhead about KCON’s main theme this year which was “Dream.”
To start the night away, we went back in time to relive one of South Korea’s hottest performances. ATEEZ came out to rile up the audience with head banger “Very Good” by Block B. Not just anyone can cover Block B’s music, but ATEEZ has proven themselves worthy! LOONA came to power up the stage with “Not Today” by BTS. Once again, not a performance anyone can pull off with the intense choreography, but these ladies definitely killed it!
First song performance of tonight’s line up was “Breathe” by none other than rising rookie group of 2019 AB6IX. Members Woojin and Daehwi, former members of popular boy group Wanna One from Produce 101 Season 2. Youngmin and Donghyun, a former duo group named MXM, and Woong who has been known for his trainee days at YG Entertainment graced the stage with their music. Rapper Woojin’s wasn’t able to stand on stage along with his fellow members; he was on sitting on stage with a stool as he recovers from an ankle injury. Of course, that definitely did not stop him from dancing the moves in his chair and spitting out his lyrics when it was his turn showing his professionalism throughout the entire performance. Next up was “Shining Stars” which matched perfectly with the night’s theme of “Dream” and followed by their debut song “Hollywood”.
Every year KCON presents a special stage for their night’s theme. This year’s stage was given to IZ*ONE as main vocalists Chaewon and Yuri appeared on stage for a beautiful rendition of “Love Will Show You Everything” by Jennifer Love Hewitt. Each bringing their own voice of color to the song and joining the center stage together at the end, their blend of vocals together was something that fans didn’t know they needed to hear from the vocal line.
Moving right onto the next set of artists, Momoland’s Hyebin, Jane, Nayun, JooE, Ahin, and Nancy returns to the LA stage once again this year for KCON with “I’m So Hot” that had yet again gained many attention for its addictive sound. Unfortunately, members Daisy, Taeha, Yeonwoo weren’t able to make it this year due to health and personal reasons, but hopefully their Merry-G0-Round’s (Fandom Name) will be able to see them next time. As each member did their absolute best to cover for the missing members, JooE did an exceptional job when it came to Daisy’s rap parts. Up next was “Baam” which made fans want to get out of their seats to do the shuffle dance in the open and to finish up their performance, they did an all-time fan favorite “Bboom Bboom”, this was the kind of song you can never get tired of with it’s simple dance steps and putting your thumps up to the sky with the words cherry words “GREAT” along with it.
Next up on the setlist was another rising rookie that has takes the U.S by storm, ATEEZ, consisting of members Hongjoong, Seonghwa, Yunho, Yeosang, San, Mingi, Wooyoung, and Jongho. Rocking out to their latest title track “Wave” in complete white attire suites, ATEEZ gained their first music win with this song. They moved right along with “Say My Name” which definitely got everyone repeating “Say My Name, Say My Name”. You can automatically tell these rookies are pouring our their passion and hard work on stage with how hardcore they were getting into their dances. They definitely showed that the stage was theirs as they continued with “Dancing like Butterfly Wings” and wildly ended their performance with fan favorite “Hala Hala” for their ATINY’s (Fandom Name). They definitely earn a round of applause and a standing ovation from the crowd as everyone got up from their seat to cheer for ATEEZ’s passionate stage.
Taking it to a higher level, the 12 member girl group, LOONA started off their stage with members HeeJin, HyunJin, HaSeul, YeoJin, ViVi, Kim Lip, JinSoul, Choerry, Yves, Chuu, Go Won and Olivia placed around the entire stage for a small introduction before moving into their first song “Butterfly”, whose choreography itself creates a majestic butterfly with both hands as you sing the words “butterfly”. Black is just one of those colors you can’t ever go bad with, as every girl was covered with black from head to toe, giving of an elegant but sexy and chic vibe to them. Heading right into their next song “Hi High” which gave off a complete different feel from “Butterfly”. “Hi High” was a very bright and bubbly song; this was also their long await debut single as a full group that Orbit’s (Fandom Name) was waiting for since their pre-debut project which took a little over 18 months before officially debuting with 12 members.
SF9, officially took the stage over next with “RPM(Revolutions Per Minute)” as their first performance for the night. The 8 members, Youngbin, Jaeyoon, Dawon, Zuho, Rowoon, Taeyang, Hwiyoung and Chani were dress in black and white, a chic and classic color which matched them perfectly for their chosen songs. Unfortunately, their main vocalist Inseong had fractured his sternum and would be resting in South Korea until he was fully recovered; we hope he would be able to come along with the members of SF9 to visit their FANTASY’s (Fandom Name) next time here in the States. They then switched it up with a darker song “Now or Never” and followed by “O Sole Mio” that gave the fans a taste of Latin pop music and ending their breathtaking performance and upbeat dances with “Play Hard”.
Next to blow us away with their beauty was 12 member girl group IZ*ONE, consisting of Jang Wonyoung, Miyawaki Sakura, Jo Yuri, Choi Yena, Ahn Yujin, Yabuki Nako, Kwon Eunbi, Kang Hyewon, Honda Hitomi, Kim Chaewon, Kim Minjoo, and Lee Chaeyeon, came on and filled up the entire stage with “Violeta” dressed in Red and White. You could instantly hear the difference between the female and male fans. The male fans definitely dominated the audience now as the girls showing nothing but bright smiles and love for their WIZ*ONE (Fandom Name). They moved right along into their debut song “La Vie En Rose”. Followed by “Highlight” and “Airplane” and ending their performances by bringing back memories from their variety show Produce 48 with “Nekoya(Pick Me)”. These ladies were nothing but lovely when it came down to performances and fan service.
Last but not least, a long time running sunbae group who officially returned to KCON LA once again, not as Nu’est W but Nu’est. Joining them this time around to be a full 5 member group was Minhyun; as he completes his time from being in Wanna One. JR, Aron, Baekho, Minhyun, and Ren begins with “Dejavu” sweeping the stage with their voices. L.O.Λ.E’s (Fandom Name) has been waiting for this day since last year as Nu’est and Wanna One came to KCON but Minhyun wasn’t able to perform with his group due to his contract at the time. Seeing them together got the fans more excited and compelled to cheer their hearts out towards the 5 individuals on stage. “Love Paint(every afternoon)” came on next as and “R.L.T.L (Real Love True Love (One Morning))” followed right after”. The group ends their stage with “Bet Bet” which is their latest hit single and also grabbed them their first music show win after Minhyun had return to the group beating out top songs like BTS “Boy with Luv” and TWICE “Fancy”. These boys have shown nothing but hard work, determination and great teamwork and continued to portray that on the stage for their fans.
(Photography by: CJ Entertainment)