By Urisara Kowitdamrong
The four lovely stars known collectively as Blackpink – usually stylised as BLACKPINK – launched a major charm offensive at Impact Arena last weekend as they kicked off their 2019 world tour.
Thailand was given the privilege of being the first country to enjoy the “Blackpink in Your Area” tour, much to the delight of fans, whose response was so overwhelming that one more round had to be added to the original back-to-back shows. All three concerts sold out, making Blackpink the first girl group to fill Impact Arena for three consecutive nights.
The four hot singers of Blackpink are raised up to the stage for the opening number.
The group’s supporters, known as Blinks – also stylised in all capitals –didn’t want to blink even once inside the concert hall because the performances by the group’s four members Rose, Lisa, Jennie, and Jisoo were simply too amazing to miss.
Screams echoed across the hall the minute Blackpink, which debuted in 2016, rose on mechanical platforms to the stage in glittering pink costumes to perform their mega-hit “DduDu DduDu”. Complemented by stunning light shows, the artists’ signature shooting dance moves for this song won big wows and had fans shouting for more. The girls then segued into “Forever Young” before officially greeting their fans in Thai and English. Lisa was the exception here. Born and raised in Thailand until her early teens, Lisa spoke Thai on stage to the loud cheers of fans. At the time of the concert, Lisa was not only the most followed female celeb in South Korea but also the most followed Thai on Instagram.
Greetings over, the girls took a seat and crooned “Stay” as fans waved the official Blackpink light sticks – “Pyong Bong” – across the hall. Next, the singers moved to the front part of the stage and sang “Whistle”.
Dressed in pink, Lisa, Jennie, Rose and Jisoo move closer to the audience for ‘Stay’.
A video clip then appeared on the giant screens and showed that the group has fans all over the world, which explains why this tour isn’t limited to Asia but also takes in North America, Europe and Australia.
The girls then took it in turns to perform solo. Jisoo was first up, appearing on stage on a pile of glittering balls that kept moving towards the fans as she sang “Clarity”. Lisa was next, performing sexy dances to the tunes of “Take Me” and “Swalla”. She made her every move eloquent, alluring, and powerful and matched it with facial expressions that had the crowd swooning. By the time her set ended, no one doubted that Lisa is one of the world’s best dancers – slithering, twerking and hitting the floor with her hand with professional aplomb.
Blackpink pile on the allure as they perform “Whistle”.
Some girls might have hesitated about putting on a show after Lisa’s fantastic performance but Rose had no trouble wowing the audience with her powerful vocals on “Let it be”, “You and I” and “Only look at me”. Jennie was the last to go and attired in a gorgeous red dress, she put on a breathtaking performance of “Solo”.
The ladies then handed over to their backing group Band Six as they left the stage to prepare for the next part of the show.
Returning to the stage, they delivered “So hot”, “Look at me” and “Playing with Fire” then introduced each musician to the audience and chatted with fans.
Lisa told the crowd that she had taken her band mates to a weekend market but failed to secure a discount, even after making repeated requests to a vendor. “But when Jennie asked for a discount in Thai, her request was honoured,” the Thai singer said, drawing laughter from the audience. Lisa asked couples in the hall to identify themselves and Jisoo timidly and jokingly suggested Lisa was her mate. And Rose did her best to sing the Thai song “Bao Bao” with the audience happily helping her to complete it.
Tracks “Really” and “See U Later” followed before the screens lit up again, this time showing the four girls with KIA cars. By the time the clip ended with the car leaving a trail reading BP (short for Blackpink) on screen, the four singers were on back on stage in sexy black attire for “16 shots”.
The four singers make some sexy moves while singing ‘Playing with Fire’.
Rose then told the fans that there were just two songs left and she wanted to take the opportunity to thank them for their support. Lisa then asked Blinks to please stand by her band no matter what, tacitly reminding fans of the #RespectLisa campaign that recently started online amid reports of discrimination against her. Jennie quickly said, “We will take care of her” as Jisoo rushed to embrace her.
Closing out the show with the dance number “Boombayah” before crooning “As if it’s your last” , they exited the stage but were soon back for an encore, choosing to perform “DduDu Ddu_Du alongside their music label’s mascot Krunk then sitting down for a rendition of “Stay”.
And even though the concert had already run for more than two hours, most fans were left wishing that it would go on for much, much longer.