[Concert Review] Shinhwa Shines a Light on 16 Years at ′Here′ Concert
The brightly lit up stadium full of orange was a wonder in itself.
Compared to the stars that spark up shortly before disappearing in this competitive entertainment industry, Shinhwa, the longest running idol group who has kept its place on top for 16 years, has stayed constant. Or rather, Shinhwa was maturing with the flow of time, writing its own shinhwa (legend).
On March 23, Shinhwa held its 2014 Shinhwa 16th Anniversary Concert – HERE at the Olympic Park Gymnastics Stadium. With both performances on March 22 and 23, a total of 27,000 fans appeared for the group, boasting that it hasn’t lost it yet.
The concert opened up with Scarface from Shinhwa’s 11th album, released in 2013, continuing with Venus and Brand New, turning up the heat from the way beginning. Especially with Brand New being the song that won Shinhwa the highest award at the 2004 Seoul Music Awards, fans exploded when the song began to play, with around 14,000 fans singing along.
During the first talk of the night, Kim Dong Wan said, “I have something to say. You guys… do you like being with me?” The comment made the other members scoff, asking if that was all there was. Eric then added, “I’m so happy that so many people came today. Please enjoy the concert until the very end.”
“You filled the stadium two days in a row. Are you ready to play today? This place is a very meaningful place. Our 2001 concert, our 2008 concert when we had to say good bye for a while, and our 2012 comeback concert were all held here,” said Lee Min Woo. “That’s why we named the concert HERE. Please enjoy it.”
Shin Hye Sung also sent his message of gratitude, as Jun Jin continued, “I sincerely thank you. We’ll work even harder for the member who isn’t here today.”
Just as Jun Jin said, Andy was not present at the 16th anniversary concert. In 2013, Andy was involved in an unfortunate event that caused him to halt all Shinhwa activities and be in a time of self-reflection.
As Andy’s empty spot could be quite saddening in the fans’ perspectives, the other five Shinhwa members played in all areas of the stage more than ever to make sure that Andy’s absence wasn’t felt. The five members completed each performance with perfection, taking some of Andy’s burden with them.
In between the performances, Shinhwa played a series of videos, titled, “The Shinhwa Squadron from Hell,” in which all five members came dressed as old veterans who survived a war together, filling the stadium with roaring laughter.
“Did you enjoy the video?” asked Shin Hye Sung afterwards, followed by Lee Min Woo, who added, “I think more than anything, Kim Dong Wan’s permed hair left the biggest impression.”
The members also shared what they’ve been doing. Turning into a surprise MC, Jun Jin shot out reporter questions and held interviews with each member. Shin Hye Sung stated that he’s been resting and obsessing over sports, such as baseball, bowling, and golf.
Lee Min Woo said, “I’ve been promoting with Taxi and working as the Red Wing’s Master for Dancing 9. Ha Hui Dong is also a Master now, so I’m really excited. Oh, and I recently came back from Brazil.” He added that he asked Eric for vitamin supplements and recovered quickly from the jetlag and exhaustion.
Then Lee Min Woo said, “Personally, Shinhwa’s album is scheduled for October, and as the producer, I don’t think I’ll have many days to rest.”
“A solo album, which I’ve secretly been postponing, dramas, and movies – I’ve been self-reflecting a lot thinking I should get started on these,” said Eric, who initially shocked fans into thinking a solo album was confirmed for release.
Jun Jin said that he’s working hard to come back with a new album and other good things.
On this night, Shinhwa sang Shooting Stars, Red Carpet, Hey Come On, Midnight Girl, Hurts, Desire, Time Machine, Jam #1, Move with Me, U, Let It Go, Perfect Man, This Love, Mannequin, First Love, On the Road, I Pray 4 U, and more, totaling to around 30 songs for the fans.
After the final encore song, Lee Min Woo said it is a concert of celebrations for Shinhwa’s 16th birthday and that the members had a surprise present for all the fans. The surprise was Shinhwa’s sixth member Andy, who rose to the stage, dressed in a black suit and an apologetic expression. He was immediately greeted by the members and the fans, who began to cry.
“I didn’t have the confidence to stand on stage, so I worried a lot. I came here to say that I’m sincerely sorry. I’m so sorry to the fans and the members. I’ve been spending a time of self-restraint and self-reflection and I missed the fans so much. I’ll pay this back with a sincere and positive image.”
The members re-emphasized that Shinhwa will be back in October with Andy.
In the end, the concert was a performance that really shined a light on Shinhwa’s 16 years of experience. With the five matured members’ singing, dancing, and stage manner, it only proved why Shinhwa has become the longest running idol group.
Meanwhile, short track national athletes Park Seung Hee, Kim Ah Rang, and figure skater national athlete Kwak Min Jung were in the audience, attracting attention.
Photo Credit: Hea Jung Min
- Shinhwa 20140324