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!)
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,
cr. EXO Official Vyrl
cr. Cai Umali
cr. Dawn Naval
Written by Krew Member Dawn Naval and KCC intern Raven Esperanza