Rising K-Pop sensation VIXX brought its best game to Starlights in the Philippines for the one-night only “Live Fantasia in Manila Utopia” concert. The concert is made more special because it was VIXX’s first time in the country.
The cheers came a mile a minute with the fast-moving performances of the evening, echoing the very enthusiastic welcome from the Filipino fans at their open press conference a day earlier.
VIXX opened the two-hour show, the first ever live performance for the Philippines with an energetic set, including “On and On” and “Voodoo Doll.” The fans’ fever pitch, however, went up a notch when when N, Ravi, Leo, Hongbin, Hyuk, and Ken introduced themselves in Filipino.
Hyuk received a wave of cheers when he said, “Ako ang bunso” (“I am the youngest”) to refer to himself. The members also revealed that they loved the fruits in the Philippines, especially Hongbin.
“I love fruits, most of all mangoes,” Hongbin said.
In between group performances, each member came out with his own showcase performance.
Ken displayed his vocal prowess through a cover of Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep.” The crowd screamed as he dipped his mic stand. Hyuk in his gentlemanly white suit sat down at the piano for his rendition of “Call You Mine,” a smooth, jazzy track by Jeff Bernat. Cheers erupted when Hyuk punctuated his slow number with a dance break.
Ravi’s turn was a fierce rap performance of “Ghost,” against a backdrop of gold skulls.
A powerful dance put the spotlight on Hongbin, while N wowed the crowd with an entire dance sequence performed blindfolded.
More than VIXX’s string of hits and beloved songs performed live, what made the night even more special for the Filipino Starlights were the snippets of interaction filled with sincerity and humor.
“Are you excited?” Ravi revved the crowd. At the enthusiastic response, he and the rest of VIXX introduced “exercises.” Other members called on Hyuk first to show off his “exercise,” which turned out to be a kkab dance to a few bars of “Bang Bang.”
When VIXX asked the Mall of Asia Arena audience who they wanted to see next, Leo’s name echoed throughout. He, undoubtedly one of the most popular members among the Philippines’ Starlights, did a catwalk to “Uptown Funk,” only to end it with peace signs. His funny antics elicited a laugh and more calls from the fans to do it again. There was a collective gasp and a loud applause when he did roundhouse kicks in the air.
Another favorite was then revealed by the crowd, Hongbin. He set hearts aflutter with his sexy, Michael Jackson-like moves.
It seemed like VIXX only intended for the “exercise session” to end with three members but the crowd called for N next, who showcased his lean, graceful body in a chair-dance. Buoyed by insistent cheers, Ravi came on with sultry moves, pulling down his jacket with his back to the audience then suddenly turning around with a flower pose.
The crowd would not stop cheering until Ken did his own “exercise.” Staying true to his main vocalist role in the group, he scatted and sang adlib verses, bringing the fans to applause and cheers.
After an encore of Hyuk’s kkap dance, leader N smoothly slipped the crowd into a more sentimental mood. He introduced their “song for the Starlights,” before asking the venue to turn down the house lights for the light sticks to glow.
N’s message, “Please be shining lights next to us always” kicked off a sweet performance of “Love Letter for You.”
The “Last Song of VIXX,” marked with a countdown was “Error,” with VIXX holding the end pose until the lights went out.
The fans knew that there it was not really the end, and they cheered and kept up the excitement until VIXX came out for the encore.
“This is the best show ever, but it’s time to say goodbye,” VIXX said. Each member individually thanked the Starlights for the love and support, and expressed his intention to keep working hard to repay the devotion with better music and performances.
The Philippines would not let them go without a promise to be back, of course, which was why N spoke on behalf of the group. “We will do our best to come back to the Philippines. We promise to be back.”
The final song was “G.R.8.U,” with VIXX inviting everyone to sing along. Respectful bows and affectionate waves were exchanged until the cheers and a white confetti shower sent the members, walking away one by one, off the stage. Ken is the last one off the stage giving everyone a big virtual hug.
VIXX and the Filipino Starlights had made a singular memory with the first and thus far, only “Live Fantasia in Manila Utopia.”
Soompi thanks Pulp Live World for the invitation to this concert.