Stealthy 'farewell' for K-pop icon
Barry C Chung
Last weekend Macau was expecting cloudy periods with a chance of scattered showers. What it got was a rainstorm!
Korean singing-acting-dancing sensation Rain gave fans a jam-packed show last Saturday at the Cotai Arena in Macau. It was an extra special event as it's probably the last time he will appear in the region before he heads off to do his compulsory national service in South Korea.
There was surprisingly little in the way of publicity in Hong Kong, and only 84 per cent of the seats were filled on the night. Journalists given pre-show interview opportunities were warned not to mention his upcoming military service.
In his chat to Young Post, Rain explains why he thinks K-pop was such a big phenomenon overseas, especially in the Chinese regions. 'There's a certain trend and certain generation that's really into K-pop,' says the 28-year-old. 'Everyone in our business tries hard and does a good job of promoting the industry and our culture. I'm really proud of what we've done.'
Dressed in smart casual attire, he looked sleek in a button-down shirt over a white tank top, completing the look with sockless leather loafers. Even when he's shirted, you notice the physique of someone that doesn't shy away from the gym. 'I exercise all the time,' he says, 'because it's important for me to stay fit.'
The concert began with a video projection of someone, presumably Rain, doing a dancing light show. Then a giant white curtain dropped, revealing the man himself. Rain's concert wasn't just about singing and dancing. It was a visual and aural feast with lasers, bursting flames, pyrotechnics and, well, rain.
Towards the end of I, Rain dropped to his knees and continued to sing while being illuminated by a spotlight. Suddenly rain began to pour from the rafters, seemingly soaking the star - he never actually got wet - for the remainder of the song. It was a technical masterpiece - nothing spells disaster like soaked electrical equipment. But that didn't happen and the rain added an extra dimension to the show.
Before My Girl, Rain announced it was time to give away a special present. Holding a handheld camera, with the image projected on the big screen, he zoomed in on one special fan and asked her to join him on stage. She sat on a swivel chair and he began singing to her, eventually getting on his knees to give her a giant teddy bear and flowers.
Rain performed 22 songs in total, including two - Bad Guy and Instead of Goodbye - as encores. For most fans, the highlight of the night was definitely the single continuous locker room shot of Rain backstage, changing costume.
The show was certainly worthy of the man recently voted the most influential person in the world via an online poll conducted by Time magazine.
The star had a final word for YP readers who dream of making it big in showbiz:
'Take time to find out about yourself and discover who you are then you will succeed.'