So how would one describe MAMA 2011 in Singapore? I guess it would be this:
Yes, a super duper grand stage (which I didn’t think was possible with our rather tired, worn-out Indoor Stadium) and the super duper crazy fans.
Of couse, the hype and frenxy had started at least a month before the actual show and it reached a feverish stage about 2 days before the event as the stars started arrriving one by one to our little red dot. Unfortunately, actual sightings of these stars were even rarer than the real ones in the sky and limited mostly to the google box for many fans. You could however, have these standees as stand-ins.
Aren’t these girls better. Unfortunately I had arrived late and didn’t have the time to check out this pretty little counter. They were giving out yummy brownies with yummy Goo Soo’s face on it though. Mmmmm…
And this was the counter for the other sponsor- Beats by Dr Dre, who also performed that night.
By the time I got to the stadium at 5pm, the red carpet was well underway and I could hear the crowd roar each time a car passes by. It was, I admit rather electrifying. But there was no chance of seeing any of the stars at the red carpet (which is a highlight and may even be considered as an event by itself) as the rather small section was closed off by noon due to limited space area. A suggestion to Mnet- perhaps a big TV screen can be set up at the venue in the future?
The show started rather promptly (well, being about 10 minutes or so late is considered prompt by concert standards….) with a gig by a group of well established artistes who know how to AND can rock. YB, Simon D, Dynamic Duo started off the tone of the event with a get-on-your-your-feet-and-dance jamming session mixing hip-hop with rock and even classical music. This fusion and mix would continue throughout the night.
The next artiste could not be more different in tone and music genre than the opening act but he is just as impressive and good. Lang Lang (who is new to me) is very well known in the classical music scene. As I listened to him playing Moonlight Sonata on the piano, I had goosebumps. He was that good! I must definitely catch his act the next time he is in Singapore.
Lang Lang had already revealed in the press conference earlier that morning that he would be teaming up with Beast to perform ‘Fiction’. And I was really anticipating it too. ^^ I thought it was a good ‘marriage’, so to speak as it showed off Beast’ vocal abilities and I really loved the live orchestra. HyunA and Hyun Seung’s (or JS) performance totally caught me and everyone in the stadium by surprise. The ‘kiss’, ahem, certainly became the talk of the town. There was no need for any other PR activities. I really like the group, Troublemaker as well as the song, ‘Troublemaker’. It has me humming along. Isn’t HyunA sexy?
Beast popularity is on the rise. Besides their talent, I like their confidence and individuality. While I’m glad they won something at MAMA 2011, personally, I felt they deserve soemthing more than just the Best Dance Performance for Male Group. To me, it was not their dance but rather their vocal talents that is outstanding. Of course, the ‘penguin’ dance was very distintive. I certainly hope this group will release more good albums in 2012 and win more awards. They deserve it.
Koda Kumi showed a different personality (at least to me) at the press conference and during the show. She was very friendly and came across as rather sweet. But her performance- ooh-la-la! Her sexy image is definitely one of her selling point but I do find the dress more revealing than sexy. Still, she has a great voice.
Miss A successfully held their first ever showcase in Singapore recently. I think they are one of the groups to look out for in 2012. Whilst most groups are advancing into the Western market, the girls are marching into the Chinese market with the release of their Chinese version of Goodbye Baby. Though I’m not entirely fond of this type of kimchi fusion music, it might have been interesting to hear them sing the Chinese version, especially since they were performing a sort of Chinese kung-fu/ fan dance. With all those cartwheels and somersaults, it’s no wonder Min injured her back whilst rehearsing. Girls, just stick to normal dances in the future.
Vision Wei (魏晨|Wei Chen) won the Best New Asian Solo Artiste and performed one of his hit- ‘Daybreak/ 破晓’. If the song and dance steps sound familiar, it’s because it’s a collaboration CJ E&M. Hmmm…. Will we see more of this guy in Korea in the future? Check out his other song ‘I Wanna Love/ 我想爱’ (got Korean subtitles!)
#1- I was totally stumped by Miss A and Vision Wei performing to the song, Kung Fu Fighting, with the lyrics ‘Singapore fire, take it higher’ in the background. Errr.. why huh?
Jane Zhang Liang Ying/ 张靓颖 was one of the highlight of the show that night. Though I’ve heard her songs on the radio, this was the first time I’ve heard her sing live and it blows me away. Wouldn’t it have been great to have Baek Ji Young and Jane Liang perform together? Two female powerful voices on the same stage?
As much as I enjoyed all the artistes performance at MAMA 2011, there were some who should have performed but didn’t. I was and still am frustrated. So near and yet so far…. boohoohoo!
Baek Ji Young won both the Best ost (Secret Garden) and Best Female Artiste but did not perform. The winners for Best Male Group (Super Junior), Best Female Group (Girls’ Generation) amd Best Male Artiste (Kim Hyun Joong) did, so why not Baek Ji Young? Argggh!
Huh Gak, the winner for for Super Star K Season 2, a fast rising singer won the Best New Male singer but we did not get to hear him sing. And Aziatix, who had performed at St James Power Station that Sunday night also wasn’t given the chance to show why they won the Best New Asia Group Artise. Sigh.
Side note: Can anyone tell me why our own artiste, Fann Wong, who normally dresses ok thinks MAMA 2011 is a horse riding show *Shakes head*
In the days leading to MAMA 2011, there was a tweet going around asking for 40 children to perform at MAMA 2011 and I was wondering if it might be a hoax.
It wasn’t. ^^
These 40 children were part of apl.de.ap’s performance of his latest song- ‘We Can Be Anything’, which is an education advocay campaign in The Philippines. It’s a great song and it was wonderful to see both artistes and crowd dancing and singing to this infectious song. But even greater is the campaign behind this song. And if anyone of you are keen to find out more or help, here’s the website- We Can Be Anything. The children on stage were cute if a little blur. Haha!
It seems right and fitting that CL of 2NE1 (can’t think any other girl group) should team up with apl.de.ap and will.i.am to sing ‘Where is the Love’, a hit of Black Eyed Peas. I love the colloboration. And I think CL thoroughly enjoyed herself too. Her fellow members and Super Junior certainly did.
Kim Hyun Joong got his wish and won the Best Male Artiste for MAMA 2011. I like his song ‘Lucky Guy’ better than ‘Breakdown’. Somehow, the catchy and feel-happy song fits his 4-D personality better. Hehe! And inviting Suzy of Miss A on stage was a nice touch. A bit more skinship would be even better. Wahahaha!
To me- most of the highlights for the show that night were not the big stars but the ‘little stars’. Both Ulala Session and the Top 4 of Super Star K Season 3 were two such highlights.
Because of MAMA 2011, I heard Ulala Session perform for the very first time and absolutely love them. Made me want to stand up and dance that night.
The mash-ups of some of the latest and hottest K Pop songs, arranged differently and sang by the top 4 of Super Star K ceratinly was interesting.
When I first heard Mnet announced the presentors line up, I was drooling. But, but- there were no opportunities to ‘catch them’ except for that brief moment on stage as they presented the award. The next time the organsiers decide to spend spent so much effort flying in over 20 artistes, can they also arrange for some opportunities for the fans to see them beyond the prize presentations?
For MAMA 2011, SME artistes were back in full force after being absent for the last 2 years. It was a real pleasure to watch Super Junior and Girls’ Generation perform. And the fans couldn’t agree more as they reseve some of the biggest applause for these 2 groups.
The opening scene for Girls’ Generation looked as if it might be the introduction for their own concert (held just over the weekend)- complete with flying, fireworks etc. And the fans loved it! The girls performed their latest hit- ‘The Boys’ first in Korean and then the English remix version. Personally, I like the faster remix version better but you know what, I think the girls can sing in a trot version and the fans would still love it.
And of course, I was absolutely delighted to see Super Junior again in our little red dot. Super Junior was the biggest winner that night walking away with the Album of the Year, the Best Male Group AND Singapore’s Choice. If the Girls’ Generation’s stage production was big, then Super Juniors’ settings were really elaborate. I’m not sure who was sitting near Siwon, but I certainly wished I was there when he made the surprise entrance. ^^
They performed a medley of their hit songs including ‘Superman’, ‘Mr Simple’ and ‘Sorry, Sorry’. The last song, ‘Sorry, Sorry’ in particular was totally impressive with massive number of backup dancers all dressed in black and white. It was a spectacular performance. At the post show conference, Lee Teuk explained that the inspiration came from a clip of a group of prinsoners performing the song. Wow!
Although 2NE1′s stage backdrop was last elaborate, it was no less spectacular. To have the 4 girls in their ‘own’ cube and singing ‘Lonely’ was beautifully and aptly presented and by the time the glass was ‘broken’ and the girls struted out singing ‘I am the Best’, the crowd had joined them and was singing away. These girls have stage charisma!
And of course, they saved the best for last- the joint performance of Dr Dre and Snoop Dogg.
Now I have to admit- I don’t know much about these 2 artistes. I mean I’m aware of them but I don’t know much about them except they are much reveared as icons in their own music genre. And whether most of the teens there know who they are- that didn’t matter. Beacuse they got everyone inlcuding the stars dancing away. Did they get you up on your feet and dancing away too? ^^
The finale was one big party with everyone shuffling, dancing singing away to the theme song- Music Makes One. It was a full 4 hours show (6 hours if you include the red carpet. I was amazed that they managed to finish the whole show within the time stipulated. I thought it would end late! Truely, a lot of time and preparation had gone into planning this show to ensure such smooth running. Too bad i had to rush off to attend the post show conference. Would have loved to join in the partying (err… can leave out the lions next time. They look a bit lost as if they couldn’t figure out if they should lion-dance, boogie or hip-hop)
And that was the end of MAMA 2011 in Singapore.
If you want to see the full results, just check out MAMA’s site here. Just a bit of interesting note- amongst the judges for the MAMA 2011 winners was our very own pioneer Hallyu/ K Pop journalist- Tan Li Yi.
Tan Li Yi:
- Taking this mega music awards show out of Korea shows the magnitude of Korean wave and how much K pop is being loved by hundreds and thousands of fans all around Asia. This certainly elevates the regional status of the award and get the non-korean fans very very excited!
It was a great show and I’m truely glad it was held in Singapore. Not just because we got to see all these stars but also it made our little red dot a happening and exciting place and hopefully, other great entertainment acts would make their way here too.
The show was broadcast to 20 countries via TV and live streaming online. It’s amazing. But what stood out even more was the different colloborations by artistes of different nationalities and genre and language, giving the fans and music lovers a real feast for their ears (and eyes as well).
Music Really Makes One
Side note: A big thank you to Viz Pro who was so very patient with my queries and buggings every few days. ^^