21 bands from 16 countries compete
An influx of crazed K-pop fans flocked to Changwon to support their favorite stars in the K-POP World Festival that took place on Dec. 7. In addition, the final round of performers from around the world showcased their talent alongside Korea’s top stars at the Changwon Velodrome for two hours from 7 p.m.
The festival, organized by Changwon City, revealed performers from 21 bands from 16 countries, including the United States, Germany, Argentina, Britain, Japan, Kazakhstan, China, the Czech Republic, the Philippines and Vietnam. The diversity of the participants demonstrates the soaring popularity of “hallyu,” or the Korean wave in the international sphere.
The 21 groups chosen by the Korea Culture and Information Service (KOCIS) underwent auditions for the past six days. The selected 12 bands were mentored by idol singers and faced off in the preliminary rounds.
The event has attracted actors Song Joong-ki and Park Shin-hye, who will join popular groups Secret, Sistar, K-will, Boyfriend, and MBLAQ in helping to make the event unforgettable for the global audience.
International fans also had the opportunity to show their support for finalists on the event’s website, which can be viewed in English. They can leave messages and vote for their favorite acts.
This is the first time for an event to have both national and international performers invited to take the stage in a joint concert. The K-POP World Festival is an epitome of how the hallyu fever is permeating the global music scene.