Girls’ Generation Tae-yeon rocks with Hong Kong SONEs at AsiaWorld-Expo

Andrew McNicol |

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Sweet and charming as ever.

K-pop idol Kim Tae-yeon was welcomed by a roaring Hong Kong crowd as she graced the city for the first time as a solo artist – she even spoke a bit of the lingo!

Tae-yeon, known as the ‘Kid Leader’ of legendary K-pop girl group Girls’ Generation, greeted everyone by saying “dai ga ho” ("hello, everyone" in Cantonese) to the delight of her audience, which numbered more than 8,000 on Saturday. The powerful vocalist didn’t hold back in the last leg of her PERSONA tour, as she entertained fans with her angelic voice and dorky personality at AsiaWorld-Expo.

“SONEs [as Girls’ Generation fans are called]! I'm finally in Hong Kong. It’s the last stop of my tour, so it’s extra special,” said Tae-yeon. “Touring alone is quite difficult, but seeing my fans makes it all better.”

The charismatic Tae-yeon asked the audience about Hong Kong food, said she'd like to try local street food siu mai, and revealed she'd bought a guidebook because she was so interested in the city. Finally, she put her Cantonese skills to the test, telling her fans they were “tai jeng” (too good) and giving them “sum sum” (hearts).

Taeyeon opened with dreamy ballad U R, sparking an ocean of swaying pink glow-sticks from the captivated fans.

After warming the crowd up, she performed her most famous song, I, before singing hits from her latest album including Make Me Love You, I Got Love and Fine.

Fans saw the many sides of Taeyeon; fierce during Fire, groovy during Cover Up, and soulful during Rain. She was accompanied on-stage by a live band and tireless backup dancers.

The most memorable moment of the night was Taeyeon’s performance of I Blame On You. The pink and purple ocean became a multi-coloured one after fans coordinated to create a suitable atmosphere for her heartfelt ballad.

Some over-enthusuastic SONEs couldn’t contain their excitement and asked Taeyeon to marry them. “Sorry, I haven’t really thought about marriage yet … maybe after the concert,” she joked.

“Give me some more time to miss Hong Kong fans, because it’ll be even more special the next time round,” Taeyeon said, ending the PERSONA concert on a positive note. “People usually cry here; no crying. Just be happy!”