IPONING 101: The K-Pop Stan’s Guide to Saving Up

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“I-announce niyo na yung ticket prices, please, para makapag-ipon na ko!”

“Ang lapit naman ng ticket selling! ‘Di pa ko nakaka-ipon! T.T”

“Ang mahal naman! Wala pa ‘kong pera!!!”

Do these sound familiar? You must have cried something similar at least once in your life as a fan, and I could totally relate!

Being a K-Pop stan is costly. This is something I learned the hard way when I entered the fandom a little over a year ago with a decent account balance, only to feel as though I’ve gone bankrupt a few months later with more artist merchandise than money in my possession.

True enough, it’s all fun and exciting until you realize that you pretty much have nothing left to spend for more important things and – well, let’s all be honest here – more K-Pop. So what’s the right thing for a fan to do? Iponing, of course!

Saving up has since become more than just a habit to me; it’s a lifestyle, as it should be for you. After all, how else would you fund that gorgeous comeback album or that much-coveted concert ticket? If you’ve got better ideas, let me know. But for now, here are some tips on mindful saving and spending for K-Pop fans:

Don’t wait. Just start.
There’s no better time to start saving up than NOW. Even though it has not been announced that your favorite group is coming to the country or that they will be releasing a new album soon, it would be smart of you to grow your fandom fund as early as now, so when the time comes, you wouldn’t have to worry about not being able to afford joining a group order or being part of #TeamBahay – slash – #TeamLabas.

Set a goal
All of us have something we want to save up for, and for fans, it’s most likely a concert, a comeback album, or a dream trip to the mecca of K-Pop and K-Dramas, South Korea.

Now, think about what yours is and focus on that goal. Make a rough estimate of the price that comes with it, then use it as your target. It may seem tough to achieve at first, but not impossible. You’ll feel much more motivated to save up if you have a definite goal in mind.

Decide on where to keep your savings
So is it the old school glass jar or cutesy piggy bank for you? Whatever you choose, know that deciding on where to keep your savings is crucial. Make sure it’s accessible and convenient yet secured.

Personally, I prefer keeping my savings in the bank. I have an account that I maintain to fund my wants and wants only, which includes my K-Pop splurges. This prevents me from touching the amount I have in my actual savings account, which I consider strictly off-limits.

Compromise, not sacrifice.
They say a bit of sacrifice goes a long way. But don’t you think “sacrifice” is too dramatic a word? If anything, it makes the whole idea of saving up more daunting! So I say compromise – not sacrifice.

How? Well, there are “little” things you spend on daily that you can get through more cost-efficient means. Start keeping track of your expenses, and check which items you can cut back on or, better yet, ultimately stop paying for.

For instance, instead of buying coffee at your favorite café, why not just make your own brew at home? Ever considered bringing packed (and healthier) meals to school or work? How about bringing your own bottle of water or snacks to curb those sudden cravings?

While the small stuff you spend on may not be that noticeable in your everyday spending pattern, such expenses add up in the long run. Think about it, if you get your caffeine fix for P120 every weekday for six months, that amounts to P15,480, which is more than enough to cover an SVIP ticket to your favorite group’s concert, or, maybe, even a roundrip ticket to Korea!

Control
Control is a word I find synonymous to discipline, and saving money requires a lot of it.

Before you buy anything – and I mean anything – hold a mental debate whether or not you need it. If you hesitate even just a bit before saying yes, then, perhaps, it’s more of a want than a need, and you’re better off not buying it at the time being.

There are a lot of purchases I made in the past that I totally regret now. So save yourself the guilt, and just give up on that item you know wouldn’t come in handy in the near future.

Put your skills and free time to good use
Earning some extra on the side helps A LOT. It doesn’t matter how old you are. If you’ve got skills you know you can use to earn money, make good use of them.

For instance, if you have a proclivity for making fan art, then why not sell some unofficial merch? A friend of mine, who has a good hand in graphic design, produced bags, coin purses, and banners  – all printed with a design she made – to sell in time for a boy group’s then-upcoming concert. She did it out of fun, so she was really taken by surprise when the items sold out quicker than expected. She even had to make another batch to meet the demand!

What’s great about this is that you get to make money while doing something you enjoy (hone your skills even!), and that in itself is already gratifying.

Learn to let go
When I started my K-Pop collection, I thought I will never part with any of the items I’ve got. Albums, posters, magazines – name it, I probably have it. Or at some point, I did, because I’ve sold some of them now.

Yes. I hear you. How could I?

To be honest, it took me a while before I decided to put some of the merch I had on sale. I had a hard time acquiring them, they cost a lot, and they reminded me of the good ol’ times when I was head over heels in love with the artists they feature. But the thing is, they just take up space. I touched most of them only once, and that was when I took them out of their packaging. Some even remained unopened!

It then occured to me that, perhaps, they’re better off with other fans, who would actually use them and not just stash them, away and out of sight. So I took pictures of the items, posted them on Twitter and various K-Pop buy-and-sell groups on Facebook, and waited for interested buyers.

While I didn’t get the same amount I bought the items for, I got part of my money back, made some fans happy, and cleared a bit of space for future (hopefully useful) purchases.

Take care of yourself.
You might find this a strange tip to include on this list, but hear me out: No matter how tight things can get, you have to take care of yourself first and foremost.

If you think skipping meals or stressing yourself by working overtime regularly is the answer to your money woes, you’re wrong. You’re only making things worse for yourself, and the last thing you’d want to spend on are hospital fees and medication. So no matter how cliché the saying “health is wealth” is, believe in it.

Find ways to make saving up fun
Saving up isn’t exactly the most exciting phrase out there, so why not spice up your game with money challenges that will make saving money more fun for you? From saving an amount in increments to saving a particular Peso bill, there are several challenges that financial advisors highly recommend and swear by. Feel free to look them up online, choose what you think is the most doable for you, and jump right into it!

So that’s pretty much it! I know that tips are easier said than done, but trust me when I say that your hard work will pay off, and once you achieve your goal, it would be one of the most rewarding experiences you’ll ever have.


Written by Krew member Andy Flores

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Easy K-Pop-Inspired Outfits You and Your Squad Can Rock This Halloween

Ghoulish shop window displays… an overstock of sweets at the supermarket… horror movie marathons scheduled to air on tv – there’s no denying that Halloween is upon us! And as the party invites and announcements pour in, most of us are left with a huge, almost debilitating question: What should I wear?

Well, if you and your friends are loud and proud K-Pop fans, this is a dilemma you shouldn’t even be dealing with! Go all out and make a grand entrance at your school or office party, channeling your favorite idols! After all, this season is no longer limited to dressing up in terrifying costumes (I came across a taco suit and a Cup Noodles costume just now, and they’re everything but scary).

SHINee - Halloween

To help you decide, we rounded up some fun K-Pop-inspired “costumes” that you and your squad can rock this Halloween, without fussing over complicated ensembles or looking a bit ~too~ casual.

Trust us when we say that these outfits are so easy to put together, you might even have some of the pieces in your wardrobe!

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“Cheer Up”
Inspired by: Twice

A pack of peppy cheerleaders sporting “uniforms” in contrasting hues of yellow and purple, Twice shows their school spirit, exuding a fun and youthful vibe for “Cheer Up.”

TWICE - Cheer Up

Outfit Essentials
-Black sports bra
-Purple varsity jacket with white sleeves
-Stretchy high-waisted black shorts
-Sneakers (Twice wore Nike Dunk Hi 08 shoes, but you can go for any comfy sneakers that look similar)
-Vintage tube socks in black, white, yellow, or purple
-Snapback cap
-Pink pompoms (to bring on the cheer, of course!)

f(x)_Red Light

“Rebelles
Inspired by: f(x)

Not a fan of perky cheerleaders? Perhaps, you’d like to go for an edgier look like what f(x) rocked in “Red Light.” An interesting play of textures in dark and muted tones, their getup will surely unleash the rebel in you.

f(x) - Rebelles

Outfit Essentials
-Distressed t-shirt cut-offs
-Black camisole
-Crop top/bustier
-Distressed dark denim shorts
-Camouflage shorts
-High-waisted black shorts
-Black tights/fishnet stockings/knee-high socks
-Wide-brimmed black flat top hat
-Net arm sleeves/fingerless gloves
-Combat boots/strappy platform sandals

Wonder Girls_Nobody

“Retro Chic”
Inspired by: Wonder Girls

Wonder Girls are hands down the queens of retro in the K-Pop world. Pulling off the fashion (and sound) of the yesteryears so effortlessly, they’re the perfect group to draw some inspo from when it comes to donning the vintage look.

Wonder Girls - Retro Chic

Outfit Essentials
-Sheath dress with bold patterns (either long or short-sleeved)
-Solid-colored tights
-Solid-colored high-heel shoes
-Hoop/dangling geometric earrings in bright colors

Crayon Pop_Bar Bar

“Scoot Away”
Inspired by: Crayon Pop

Call their costumes silly, but since Crayon Pop’s quirkiness received a nod of approval from Mother Monster Lady Gaga herself, there’s nothing much left to argue about here. Just like what their group’s name suggests, Crayon Pop’s “Bar Bar Bar” outfits come in cheery bursts of color that will make you and your friends stand out in the party.

Crayon Pop - Scoot Away

Outfit Essentials
-Bright-colored track jacket
-Matching track shorts
-Black tights
-White sneakers
-White gloves
-Scooter helmet (you CAN’T miss the most iconic piece in their getup!)

SEVENTEEN_Aju Nice

“Old-School Charmers”
Inspired by: SEVENTEEN

A great example of “not too complicated or too casual,” SEVENTEEN’s “Aju Nice” costumes are as charming and playful as the funky track they’re assembled for. Needless to say, this is best worn with your pack of bros.

SEVENTEEN - Old-School Charmers

Outfit Essentials
-Long-sleeved button-up white shirt/white graphic tee
-Black slacks/denim jeans
-Red/black suspenders
-White socks
-Black and white Oxfords/black sneakers

EXO_Power

“Galactic Rangers”
Inspired by: EXO

We saw EXO on a mission in a galactic wasteland, battling a robot that took away their supernatural abilities  in “Power,” which is arguably the group’s most rollicking music video yet. Veering away from their usually chic and sexy styles, they went for military-themed outfits.

EXO - Galactic Rangers

Outfit Essentials
-Camouflage/black/olive green bomber jackets
-Plain black/black and white checked t-shirt
-Cargo pants/distressed jeans/black jeans
-Combat boots/sneakers
-Tactical harness and goggles
-Black cadet cap
-Prop toy guns (believe it or not, EXO used customized Nerf guns in the MV)

SHINee_Married To The Music

“Odd Party”
Inspired by: SHINee

No K-Pop music video screams “Halloween party” quite like SHINee’s “Married to the Music.” Known for their unique and fashion-forward concepts, the quintet stepped up their game in their summer 2015 release, which turned out to be a surprisingly macabre MV, reminiscent of the 1975 cult classic “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.”

SHINee - Odd Party

Outfit Essentials
-Bright-colored jacket/blazer (feel free to accentuate it with patches)
-Heavily-printed/graphic tee
-Distressed jeans/bright-colored dress pants
-Lace-up black shoes/combat boots
-Vintage socks
-Animal print snapback cap
-Scarf/sweatband (to be worn on the forehead)
-Dark-rimmed glasses
-Prop skeleton hand or wooden hand model (to be placed in pockets, with phalanges peeking)

Got anything else to add? Sound off in the comments!

Written by Krew member Andy Flores

Diamond Edge: SEVENTEEN Stuns, Dazzles Manila

The first time I wrote a blog post here about SEVENTEEN, I struggled because I barely knew them. It was a little over a year ago, and they came to the Philippines for their two-day Shining Diamonds fan meeting. My main concern back then was getting the members’ names and the song titles right. Now, having just attended Diamond Edge in Manila over the weekend, I’m struggling to even start this entry, because I already love them too much!

About a thousand thoughts are running in my head as I write this: How am I supposed to put my love and pride for the thirteen talented boys into words? How should I tell you about my experience, which, in all honesty, still feels like a dream? Did Diamond Edge in Manila actually happen??? I wish I had answers, but all I have are fragmented memories of the concert and fancams that are as unstable as my fangirl mental state right now.

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The Manila leg of SEVENTEEN’s Diamond Edge world tour is an exceptionally special one. Not only did Carats – fans of the group – celebrate the anniversary of the announcement of the fandom’s official colors (rose quartz and serenity, in case you’re wondering), SEVENTEEN also concluded their first world tour in the city.

A three-month-long series of concerts that took the group to a total of 14 cities in 12 countries across three continents, Diamond Edge finally came to an end, with thousands of Carats witnessing it in Manila last 6 October at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

Clad in bright-colored suits that matched their strikingly stellar visuals, SEVENTEEN – complete on the Philippine stage for the first time – kicked off the show with a remixed version of “Pretty U”, followed by “Beautiful” and “Adore U.” Their youthful vibe pulsed throughout the venue, putting the audience on their toes in excitement.

Receiving a warm welcome from their Filipino Carats, SEVENTEEN, who are affectionately called SVT or “sebong“, took turns to introduce themselves, and each member was met with a frenzy of eager screams and applause.

I could still remember their aegyo-filled introductions in last year’s Shining Diamonds tour, with Mingyu’s “Hello! Ako si Mingyu!” making a mark on me. This concert, however, it was DK’s crisp and clear à la announcer “Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Diamond Edge! I’m DK!” that stole the scene for me. That guy is just so… extra!

It wasn’t too long until SEVENTEEN went back on full-performance mode, bouncing on the stage to another medley, including the crowd favorite “Aju Nice” (sans their iconic suspenders) – a funky tune that got everyone dancing with them.

In a true SVT fashion, the group – now sporting school uniforms in a faux classroom setting – barely gave Carats a moment to chill, as they pumped the arena with adrenaline through kinetic performances of “Mansae” and “Boom Boom”.

SEVENTEEN, who are known for their variety skills, once again proved their novel antics at the concert. Performance Team leader Hoshi and maknae Dino got playful and impersonated each other. Dino also mimicked his idol Michael Jackson, showing off some slick dance moves popularized by the King of Pop.

The Hiphop Team also treated the audience to an impromptu performance of their recent track “Trauma,” a soulful and laid-back rap song that came off slightly comical at the concert after the members jokingly imitated Wonwoo’s gestures in the music video.

The unit stages, were, of course, show-stopping.

Hoshi, Dino, Jun, and The8 of the Performance Team showed their fun and quirky side through “Swimming Fool”, set the stage on fire (literally) with “OMG”, then electrified the audience with the heart-thumping “Highlight.”

The Hiphop Subunit, composed of S.Coups, Mingyu, Vernon, and Wonwoo drove the audience wild with “Check-In”, but not before bringing the house (or should I say arena?) down with “언행일치” (“Un Haeng Il Chi”). They also displayed maturity in their “If I” number, which turned out to be surprisingly sexy in all its simplicity (I kinda blame their red outfits for the unexpected attack).

Speaking of sexy, let me just say that Jun and The8’s “My I” stage was beyond words hot! Dancing with a ribbon linking their wrists, they personified A-R-T onstage through their fluid movements and their innocent yet sensual expressions. I have to admit that it’s one of the best live K-Pop performances I have ever seen, and, ironically, it’s done by SEVENTEEN’s China-line!

I’m vocal team-biased, so you could just guess how long I had been looking forward to their stages. The boys, as expected, did not disappoint. “Habit” and “We Gonna Make It Shine” were sweet and smooth like honey, but it was “Don’t Listen In Secret” that snatched my heart.

The superb vocals of Joshua, Jeonghan, and Woozi, coupled with the high notes that Seungkwan and DK flawlessly held, made it one of my favorite performances of the night.

Time passed quicker than we thought, and before we knew it, we were down to the final stages of the tour.

SEVENTEEN’s performance of their latest title track “Don’t Wanna Cry” was nothing short of breathtaking to watch. It was beautiful in every sense of the word. On-point vocals, raw emotions, faultless choreography… it is arguably the group’s finest live stage to date.

SEVENTEEN gave Diamond Edge a light and refreshing finish with “Healing.” As the boys sang their final song for the night, Carats threw pink and blue paper planes carrying heartfelt messages to the members towards the stage, a repeat of their fan project at last year’s Shining Diamonds fan meeting.

Wrapping up the show, all thirteen members gathered at the center of the stage to give their thanks to everyone who came and continue to support them.

Vernon called the Manila crowd “amazing”; The8 promised fans “we will meet again”; and S.Coups, who was obviously emotional at that point, fought back his tears as he sincerely expressed gratitude to everyone who made their first world tour possible, requesting the staff to “take care of our Carats.” He then said to their fans, “If you promise to stand by us, we promise to stand by your side.” (I’m not crying. Nope. Not at all!)

After taking a few more selcas with the Carats’ rose quartz and serenity ocean in the background, SEVENTEEN gave their final bows and waved the audience goodbye for now.

DE_MNL_Bow

When I first saw SEVENTEEN, they were impressionable rookies in the K-Pop scene no more than 21 years old. Now, exuding undeniable charisma, pure confidence, and high-octane energy, they ruled the stage like seasoned idols, performing hit after hit in full coordination with outstanding vocals and incredibly synchronized choreography – no less.

They sure still have a long way to trudge in the extremely competitive industry that is Korean pop music, but with their indisputable passion, the fresh and unique tunes they keep churning, and their love for their fans, it’s safe to say that they’ll be sticking around for a long time, and Carats will most definitely be there to support them every step of the way.

Till we meet again, SEVENTEEN.

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Written by Krew member Andy Flores

Reasons why B.I.G. is the next big thing

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We bump into B.I.G. (Boys In Groove) members J-hoon (leader, dancer, vocalist), Benji (vocal) Gun Min (dancer, vocalist), Min Pyo (rapper) and Heedo (maknae, rapper) during their press conference and we’ve jot down the reasons why the media instantly fell in love with these boys! See it for yourself why you must not miss their upcoming ‘The B.I.Ginning, The Asia tour’ in Manila!

1. Spontaneous energy
No one else could beat B.I.G.’s out-bursting charms and energy as they share their love for their fans and their music. During the press conference, a day prior to their third year anniversary, B.I.G members gave us a clue on how they will celebrate their special day by probably having a ‘samgyupsal party’ and a cake. Their unending charms and ‘happy virus’ type of personalities never fail to amaze the fans as they conquer a new milestone in their career.

2. Passion for music
“Gotta get your love oh, I’ll make it over tonight.”

A short serenade from their recent track ‘Hello Hello’ proved they’ve got the charisma and the talent to compete in the K-pop industry. Aside from that, the members got individual contributions in their recent album. In the coming months, they are about to conquer Taiwan, Japan and Philippines through their Asia tour so watch out for the dates!

3. Unique Style
If you want to see a realistic and talented type of performers, then this five-member team is for you. They are total performers and all of them could sing and dance. Aside from that, they can also go solo on stage and you’ll be seeing that on their concert! (Let’s not spill the beans yet! Watch it to feed your curiosity!)

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4. Fan Service
More than throwing finger hearts and doing eye contacts, B.I.G. would make their events memorable as they love to talk with their fans, share their stories, ask questions and suddenly crack jokes in the middle of interviews.

5. Funny stunts
From ‘I want to go to Mall of Asia’ to mishearing the word father to farmer, B.I.G. got lots of humor under their sleeves. There is no way you won’t laugh even for a minute. Following their contagious laughter, you’ll see yourself extremely ‘stan’-ing over these boys!

Bonus: Member’s cute accents! There’s no way you wouldn’t notice Benji’s US accent while the other members try to copy his style!

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Right after the press conference, a quick meet and greet with the fans followed! They’ve got to celebrate Jhoon’s birthday and the third anniversary of B.I.G. together!

PS: The members really loved a Filipino food chain’s chicken and one of the members wishes to visit all the branches they have in the Philippines!

Do not miss the chance to see B.I.G up close and personal on their upcoming fanmeet happening on September 2 at the Music Museum. See you all there!

Written by Krew Member Mikay Javier
Photos by Krew Member Martin Arada

5 BTS: The Wings Tour Moments We Can’t Wait To Experience In Manila

We’re just a few days away from the 2017 BTS Live Trilogy Episode III: The Wings Tour in Manila, and we could hardly contain our excitement!

Arguably the most-anticipated K-Pop concert of the year, The Wings Tour in Manila (6-7 May) sold out some 20,000 tickets in just a few hours on the first day of ticket selling alone – a true battle of blood, sweat, and tears among the ever-so-passionate ARMYs.

As we count down the days till we witness Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Rap Monster, Jimin, V, and Jungkook set the SM Mall of Asia Arena stage on fire for their third solo concert in the country, let’s run through five The Wings Tour moments we couldn’t wait to experience on both days of BTS’ stop in Manila:

The super lit set list

 

The Wings Tour is divided into four glorious parts on top of VCRs and talking segments. Kicking off with the kinetic “Not Today” numbers and a slew of intro songs, BTS will then treat the audience to solo stages, to be followed by a medley featuring their title songs before they ease down to the encore, capping off the show with “Spring Day.” Crowd favorites like “Fire”, “Dope”, and “Baepsae” are also part of the concert’s set list.

The seven solo stages

We’ve seen BTS hold unit stages at their past concerts, but they’ve never really dedicated an entire segment to solo performances, so we sure are looking forward to the the seven stages of each member this time around. From Taehyung and Jin nailing the high notes in “Stigma” and “Awake” to Hobi’s à la worship “Mama” stage to Jungkook showcasing some impressive footwork during “Begin”, we’ll get to watch the Bangtan Boys bare their souls through powerful, uplifting, sometimes sensual, sometimes heart-wrenching numbers that we certainly won’t forget any time soon.

Watching the live performances of “Spring Day” and “Not Today” for the first time (in the flesh!)

This would be the first time we will be seeing the choreography of “Spring Day” and “Not Today”, as well as the other songs in the Wings and You Never Walk Alone albums including “Blood, Sweat & Tears”, performed live right before our very eyes – of course, we are pumped!

Taking part in the fan projects

From creating a rainbow ARMY Bomb ocean in the US, to forming encouraging messages that illuminated an entire arena in Thailand, ARMYS have always believed in “go big or go home” when it comes to packing a surprise for the boys. And since we PH ARMYs don’t want to get left behind, we have something in store for BTS, too! So if you’re attending the show, it would be best for you to familiarize yourself with all the fan projects and share the word to your fellow concert buddies!

Singing along to “2!3! (Hoping For More Good Days)”

What better way to make your fans feel loved than by writing a song especially for them? That’s exactly what BTS did. “2! 3! (Hoping For More Good Days)” is the ARMYs’ official fan song that says so much about the ups and downs that the band and the entire fandom endured together, and getting the opportunity to sing along to it is a chance we definitely wouldn’t miss. After all, it’s not everyday we get to express our love and gratitude to our ultimate bias group by singing back to them with all our heart.

Written by The Krew member Andy Flores

EXO’rDIUM IN MANILA: DERP YEOL ON THE RUN!

So you all might be wondering, who the hell is Derp Yeol? You might saw him roaming around Araneta a few hours before the second day of EXO’rDIUM in MANILA started. Some fans went cray cray when they saw him but have you spotted him with your very own eyes? 

For extra fun, my friend and I decided to host our very first giveaway in celebration of EXO’s return here in Manila. We want to make the most of our experience since it’s going to be our second time attending EXO’s concert here in the Philippines! But hosting your first giveaway needs to be memorable right? That’s why we added a twist to it and created our very iconic “Derp Yeol” tarpaulin.

The idea is to give out our EXO merchandise for free to those who will be attending the DAY 2 concert. But my friend and I thought that it will be really exhausting to choose among the pool of Filipino EXO-Ls present in the area.

While I was thinking on how are we going to execute our giveaway, my eyes landed on a very particular item at the corner of my room. Rolled and placed in one of my shelves is the Derp Yeol tarpaulin that I used and raised during EXO’luXion in Manila last year. I instantly remembered how people look onto my tarpaulin and saying that it’s one of the best banners that they saw! It even made a commotion last year when I did the rounds in MOA Arena holding the tarpaulin on my back while EXO-Ls chased me for a picture with Derp Yeol. So I said to myself, why not use Derp Yeol again this time for a better reason? LOL!

I immediately told my friend about my plan to use Derp Yeol for our giveaway and together, we formulated our execution plan and the mechanics.

EXO-Ls who spotted Derp Yeol around Araneta are entitled to win a free EXO merchandise. We pin post the mechanics on our twitter accounts and a Philippine-based fan club of Chanyeol helped us spread out our giveaway event by re-tweeting our post~ so sweet! We garnered a lot of positive response and PH EXO-Ls from twitter keep on mentioning that they are excited to meet and greet Derp Yeol on Day 2 and not just get the prizes.

Another twist in the rules is that fans need to find us wearing our baseball caps for a chance to win a free EXO Merchandise, if they spotted us not wearing our caps then it means that they will only get a selfie with Derp Yeol.

We started the game right when we arrived at Araneta Coliseum last February 26, 2017. Derp Yeol was on the run as early as 10:30 am and a lot of EXO-Ls spotted us already. Some were hesitant to approach us but as we walked around the Yellow Gate (Gen Ad entrance) someone said “Uy si Derp Yeol!” She and her friend spotted us and jumped in excitement as she showed us the mechanics which we posted on Twitter.

We congratulated them for finding us and we let them pick their free EXO merchandise via draw lots and before we part ways, we let the winners have the opportunity to take a selfie with Derp Yeol!

An overwhelming response flooded our mentions on Twitter when we posted the picture of our first winners. Some of the fans cannot find us so we tweeted the clues of the different locations where they can find Derp Yeol. Funny thing was that, the fans went to us so fast even if we just tweeted our recent location minutes ago.

The last location of Derp Yeol was in a Coffee Shop nearby and since we’re down with 4 remaining EXO merchandise left, we decided to finish it off so we can finally rest and prepare ourselves (and feels) for the concert. After we tweeted our last location, EXO-Ls flocked around Derp Yeol’s last location hoping to get a free merchandise. Of course we gave the remaining prizes to those who arrived first.

The EXO items that we gave was part of our collection and some are merchandise from different official fan bases. This simple act of giving is not to show-off anything, our goal here is to make everyone have a memorable EXO’rDIUM in MANILA experience. A simple act of generosity is what makes us happy and we also want to spread the love to our fellow EXO-Ls. Our banners may say “Iniirog Kita Bes” to EXO but those deep words are not only meant to them but also for us EXO-Ls — that in this moment, we are a family and WE ARE ONE!

Memorable enough, find us again on the next run of Derp Yeol!~

Written by Alumni Krew Member: Alexine Jimenez

EXOPlanet #3: The EXO’rDIUM in Manila

They say, “Good things come to those who wait.”

The long wait of Filipino EXO-Ls is over when the nine-member Korean-Chinese boy group from SM Entertainment fulfilled their promise as they returned in Manila for – again – a two-night concert at the Araneta Coliseum last February 25 and 26, 2017.

According to Pulp Live World their previous concert in 2015, “EXO PLANET #2: The EXO’luXion,” was sold out just a few hours after they went on sale. Because of the high demand, a second night was organized.

EXO is known for their remarkable dance routines, iconic concepts and out-of-this-world vocals which made them won 26 awards from various music awards including the ‘Hotels Combined – Artist of the Year Award.’

Filipino EXO-Ls were thrilled to see Suho, Chanyeol, Baekhyun, D.O., Kai, Sehun, Lay, Chen and Xiumin again after 399 days (yes, we counted the days from January 23, 2016 to February 25, 2017!). This year, Philippines is the second stop of EXOPlanet #3: The EXO’rDIUM concert tour, with Hong Kong as their first stop in Asia.

EXO-Ls were up early in the morning to gather outside The Big Dome to meet their “virtual” friends and spazz with them. Fandoms of each EXO members distributed banners, food support and other merchandise to #TeamConcert and #TeamLabas. The presence of International fans around the venue made it evident that EXO is a global idol.

When the gates opened, EXO-Ls screamed as a sign of their excitement to see the boys live in flesh again. The Big Dome was filled with fans carrying their banners and cosmic latte light sticks (eridi bong  as Baekhyun calls it) –and whether you are at the general admission section of Araneta Coliseum, the stage was so close to the audience making this concert more intimate.

Before the concert started, EXO-Ls began chanting E-X-O, the members’ names, “shipnames” (KaiSoo & Chanbaek – WUHOOO!) and the slogan “We are one” harmoniously while waiting for the boys to come out. Soon as the lights went dim, the screams became louder and the fans went crazy as if the boys already appeared in front of their eyes.

EXOPlanet #3: The EXO’rDIUM

The concert started with a video showing a story about the truth and lies that we see here on Earth – mysteries and unexplainable occurrences which are evident but cannot be explained. The video is executed in a comic-like frames came from sand artworks – giving you chills and nostalgic feels. Then, the EXO members started to appear:  Chanyeol lying at the middle of a volcano, Suho in his hood walking in the drought, Xiumin standing on an iceberg, Chen in the middle of the bridge with roaring thunders, Lay getting hurt, Baekhyun giving light to a kid, D.O. breaking the ground, Sehun protecting a kid from the hurricane and Kai disappearing from the Pyramid of Giza.

This theatrical video was followed by EXO’s powerful opening performance of their phenomenal remixed single ‘MAMA’, ‘Monster’ and ‘늑대와 미녀 = Neukdaewa Minyeo (Wolf)’.

After their opening performance, D.O. said that the Philippine fans are really passionate. Chen noticed that ever since the beginning of the concert the fans followed the lyrics. Xiumin also noticed the close proximity of the fans to EXO and for him it has been a while to have a concert like this. He added that he will try his best to have an eye contact with everybody. Sehun then presented his “ment” (speech) in English. Suho said that they have prepared a lot for the Filipino fans.

After their ment, they went to their positions and sung ‘White Noise.’ They continued with ‘Thunder’ and ‘Playboy,’ which was composed by Jonghyun of Shinee. One of the highlights of the concert was when the boys get their canes and danced to the song ‘Artificial Love.’

Suho introduced the “EXO House” and the acoustic session is a “gift” to the fans. Suho was surprised that the fans sang really well and he said that “It feels like Korea.” Chanyeol played his guitar while D.O. began singing ‘My lady.’ Following that sweet song is ‘My turn to cry’ and ‘Moonlight.’

Suho invited everyone to sing along with ‘Call me baby.’ ‘Love, love, love’ followed after. Kai and Sehun went at the back and danced ‘Lady Luck’ and ‘What if.’

The guys brought out their light sticks and interact with fans with ‘Tender Love,’ ‘Love me right’ and ‘One and only.’ CHEN, BAEKHYUN, D.O. and SUHO melt the hearts of the fans with their tear-jerking song ‘Stronger.’

After that silver-tongued serenade, a VCR was played in which the EXO members are dressed like dwarfs. The boys reappeared on stage, still wearing their dwarfish-like wardrobes and sang ‘Heaven,’ ‘Girl x Friend,’ and ‘3, 6, 5’.

Another video was played in which Chanyeol and Sehun rapped, followed by an exquisite dance from Kai, Sehun and Lay.  The members then came out to dance their record-breaking single ‘Overdose.’ Moreover, they performed their collaboration single ‘Lightsaber.’ The members amused the fans with their well-played routine using different vivid colors of lightsabers.

The members had their break and talked to the fans. Each member had the chance to express their thoughts about the Filipino EXO-Ls so far. EXO’s leader, Suho, said that he did not expect that they will receive the same warm welcome from the fans like the first time they went here. In addition, he also said that he is glad to see and hear the fans sing their songs, he hopes to enjoy the concert until the end.  He even asked if we had a Kpop Academy in the Philippines since the crowd where really great in following them. D.O. said he is not speaking English but he will study more and he will study Tagalog. During this ment, Kai revealed that he had a stomachache but it disappeared when he saw the enthusiasm of Filipino EXO-Ls.

EXO clearly remembered that they sang a Filipino song ‘Hawak Kamay’ at the Dream Kpop Fantasy Concert last 2013. They sang a few parts of its chorus along with their fans. Xiumin noticed that the fans were stomping their feet while cheering. He thought it was raining. He also thought that the dome will fall apart. (it’s just us EXO-Ls showing our undying love!) 

EXO PARTY

And the highlight of the concert is this part – EXO PARTY!

The party begin with Chanyeol, Sehun and Xiumin singing an unreleased song ‘Let’s do it together’ (같이해 = Gatihae), followed by ‘Full Moon’, ‘Drop that’, ‘Lucky’ and ‘Run.’ During the performance, Chanyeol showcased his talent in playing electric guitar and a DJ set afterwards. The fans jumped and cheered their favorite EXO member while having the club-like atmosphere.

After that, the last VCR was played, showing the continuation of the first VCR. The video tells us that the presence of EXO within our hearts will feel you safe whenever you think of them. Also, the video gives us a message about us, EXO and EXO-Ls, being one, as a family – a one big, happy family!

The fans chanted “we are one”, “e-x-o” and “saranghae” before the encore stage. The remix version of their hit song ‘Growl’ followed by ‘Lucky One’ was played during the encore.

Before they had their last performance, every member thanked the fans for supporting them throughout their journey. EXO are so astonished and surprised by the energy of Filipino fans shown in the concert from the beginning until the end. Suho said that the energy of the Filipino fans is very unforgettable. Filipino fans had the best energy and love they have received since the tour began. In addition to that, Suho called the fans ‘My precious’ and the fans were touched.

Chanyeol shared that he had a great affection for the Philippines because this is the first country he went to when he was in middle school. He added that he is looking forward to come here more often. D.O. reminded everyone to be healthy and they will be more awesome when they return. Kai thought that they are performing in front of 70,000 people. They were surprised when they heard the fans stomped their feet. Kai added that he really forgot his stomachache because of the passionate fans. For Chen, Philippine fans are soft, warm, passionate and beautiful.  He said that he will never forget this moment. Xiumin was still amazed with the energy that the fans give and he hoped that they will get the same reaction next time. Baekhyun even made us stomp our feet to Queen’s ‘We will rock you’. Xiumin expressed his regret when he performed seated in a chair last concert. He reminded everyone to take care. As for Baekhyun’s ment, fans keep following his cute remarks. Baekhyun thinks that we became one.

Finally, they performed ‘Angel’ as their last song.

Though it was hard to say goodbye to them, EXO promised to comeback soon. They also said that they want to stay long here in the Philippines and explore our country, particularly Boracay and Cebu.

See you again EXO!

From your precious angels,

Filipino EXO-Ls

PHOTO SOURCE:

cr. EXO Official Vyrl
cr. Cai Umali
cr. Cza
cr. Dawn Naval

Written by Krew Member Dawn Naval and KCC intern Raven Esperanza