A show-stopping concert
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A show-stopping concert

Super Junior celebrate their 19th anniversary in style


To celebrate their 19th anniversary, Super Junior released the dance single Show Time and held their Asia tour "2024 Super Junior " in eight countries -- South Korea, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Indonesia. The eight members who participated in the tour are Leeteuk, Yesung, Shindong, Eunhyuk, Donghae, Siwon, Ryeowook and Kyuhyun.

Organised by iMe Thailand, Super Junior's concert in Bangkok was held last weekend at Impact Challenger Hall 1. The show kicked off with a video of renowned South Korean TV host Kang Ho-dong, who introduced the eight members one by one.

It seemed like the theme of the show was inspired by the Super Bowl Halftime Show. The eight members appeared on stage in athletic outfits of dark blue and white and they performed three catchy songs consecutively -- Showtime, Wonder Boy and Dancing Out.

While Super Junior's main concert tour, "Super Show", was organised to promote their album after its release, "2024 Super Junior in Bangkok" is different from their other concerts since it took place after the group released just one song, Showtime. Instead of performing their usual setlist filled with chart-toppers like Bonamana, Mr. Simple and Sexy, Free And Single, the group opted for a different approach.

They focused on songs they rarely perform, including soundtracks such as Wonder Boy (from the movie Attack On The Pin-Up Boys), It Has To Be You (from the popular TV drama Cinderella's Sister) and The One I Love (from the well-received TV drama Hyena) as well as songs from previous albums such as Spy, Opera and A Man In Love. The new song list resulted in an extraordinary experience which captivated the audience.

In many K-pop groups, each member has his own position such as vocalist, rapper or dancer. The specific position allows each to showcase their unique talents and skills, but it can also limit opportunities. Rappers may not get much chance to show off their singing abilities while conversely, vocalists may not get to show off their dancing skills.

"2024 Super Junior " broke this barrier by having rappers perform their ballad alongside the vocalists. The group performed the ballads -- At Gwanghwamun, Little Prince and It Has To Be You. Each solo track was originally sung by the three main vocalists -- Kyuhyun, Ryeowook and Yesung, respectively. Since these three vocalists are renowned for their supreme vocal techniques and emotional expressions, the rappers found it challenging to perform with them. It appeared that Shindong had to put in more effort than Eunhyuk in controlling his voice to match the notes, but both rappers managed to deliver the ballads smoothly.

In addition to their captivating songs, Super Junior's concert stood out because of their sense of humour. As a video producer, Shindong created three humorous videos featuring members playfully re-enacting their past quarrels as introductions to the three subunits' performances.

For example, the intro of subunit R.S. (Ryeowook and Siwon), featured a humorous skit as Siwon repeatedly high-fived bandmates which annoyed Ryeowook. As a result, he ignored Siwon and this led to a quarrel between them. After the skit, Ryeowook and Siwon performed Danger. The comedic videos had an excellent response and had the crowd laughing and screaming.

Super Junior also performed several dance numbers and some stunning performances included Spy, which was inspired by the James Bond theme. Siwon appeared in a sleek black suit like James Bond in the opening of the Bond movies. He walked down the stage and fired a fake gun at the audience before the other members joined him on stage. Inspired by the famous spy theme song, Spy features charismatic choreography that completely mesmerised fans. The next song was Opera, a complicated dance tune requiring energetic and fluid movements which the group members executed beautifully despite being between 36 and 40 years old.

For the encore, the group performed A Man In Love and iconic dance song Sorry Sorry. The performance for A Man In Love was impressive due to its magnetic choreography with a mix of stomps and shuffling footwork. Meanwhile, Sorry Sorry deserves to be a hit as it's a masterpiece with elements the audience will never get tired of watching.

Before bidding farewell to fans, Eunhyuk quoted Thai sentences from the TV drama Duangjai Tewaprom. He said in Thai: "I don't want you to fall for my tricks. I want you fall in love [with me]." He also did a dance move from Yai Laam, a luk thung song by Thai singer Lamyai Hai Thongkham. Other members danced along with Eunhyuk after they realised that it was a Thai song. This brought on loud screams from the fans. Believe was their last song to express that they believe in their fans and the fans also believe in them.

"2024 Super Junior " is the best concert that the group had ever performed. It was a perfect blend of several elements, showcasing the vocal power of each member equally. Their intricate choreography was mesmerising and captivating. The humour of the band members could be clearly seen in their introductory videos and their interaction with the audience. Their concerts can be a healing experience and help release stress. While no one knows how long the group will stay together, their fans are sure to remain loyal to them because of their talent and charm.

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