(G)I-DLE, Kai, MAMAMOO and more

It’s been too long for Europe to hold its own K-pop Festival, and KPOP.FLEX has come to change that. Taking place on May 14 and 15 at Deutsche Bank Park in Frankfurt, Germany, the event sold more than 65,000 tickets across 84 countries. With an stellar lineup, with names ranging from EXO’s Kai to super rookie IVE, the festival aims to be a regular connection point for fans on the continent.

Besides the performances, it also features Korea Festival, a fan festival organized by the Korea Tourism Organization with food stalls and special showcases of music and talent. cultural property of Korea.

After witnessing Day One of the festival, which featured performances by IVE, ENHYPEN, AB6IX, (G)I-DLE, MAMAMOO, NCT Dream, and Kai, here are the moments that kept us entertained best.

kpop.flex day one recap nct dream
NCT Dream. Credit: KPOP.FLEX

1 day

Love diving with IVE

With less than a year of operation, girl group IVE has quickly risen to become a must-see name. Therefore, it makes sense that they were chosen to open both festival days. On Day 1, which also marks IVE’s first overseas concert, they captivated the audience with their charm and elegance.”chaebol crush” concept. First, the audience sank into their latest single “Love Dive”, followed by the B-side “Royal” and their debut hit “Eleven”. It’s important to note that Yujin’s mic is above this day.

ENHYPEN Sharp Knife Performance

Another group that has just experienced performing abroad for the first time is ENHYPEN. The boy band, debuting at the end of 2020, prepared a powerful OT7 version of Mix & Max’s ‘Bleeding Darkness’ for the intro, showing off their amazing collaboration steps. The performance was followed by last year’s ‘Drunk-Dazed’ and ‘Fever’, then led to a special section where Sunoo and Jungwon gave their best. aegyo.

Heeseung then sang a verse of Justin Bieber’s ‘Off My Face’, and the group melted the audience with the TikTok hit ‘Polaroid Love’. They also tried to teach the public some of the moves for ‘Tamed-Dashed’, along with their latest single ‘Bless-Cursed’, which closed off their concert tonight.

kpop.flex day one recap enhypen

Let It Go, Let It Go, Let It Go

If you think that frozen the fever is gone, think again. KOREAN POP. In white, their crystalline voices echoed throughout the stadium while we wondered “Is this really happening?”

Basically, VCR has the entire K-pop industry

In addition to the artists performing today, KPOP.FLEX also prepared a VCR with messages from artists such as Stray Kids, TXT’s Yeonjun, Kwon Eun-bi and many more. Even model and actress Jung Ho-yeon, known for her role on Netflix’s Squid fishing game, recorded a special message to greet the audience at the beginning of the event. Is that a special touch that might hint at what will happen for the next version? We can dream.

AB6IX’s Stadium Search

AB6IX set the stage with elegance and all-white outfits, performing hits like ‘Close’, ‘Breathe’, ‘Cherry’ and ‘Do You Remember?’ Full of charm. But before that, they recorded a sweet mini-vlog about their flight to Frankfurt. Among the scenes, the moment Woong and Donghyun search the Deutsche Bank Park stadium from above is both funny and endearing. Idols, they are just like us.

Neither Man, Nor Woman, Just (G) I-DLE

Proving that they are one of the top artists in the game, girl group (G) I-LE set KPOP.FLEX on fire with rock-heavy ‘Tomboy’, followed by their debut single ‘LATATA’ ‘, ‘Oh My Go’ in 2020, and ending with ‘I Never Die’ knockout ‘My Bag.’ They not only have attitude and charisma, but also versatility – they’ve used their soft side to perform a previous cover of Justin Bieber’s ‘Love Yourself’.

kpop.flex day one recap (G) I-DLE
(G) I-DLE. Credit: KPOP.FLEX


The veteran queens of MAMAMOO blessed the night with their beautiful voices – as expected – but also with their display of enduring friendship. Although the group has yet to disband, leader Solar has previously mentioned that a return with all members “won’t be immediate”, so any and all reunions of the quartet are all precious. In the set list, they chose recent hits “Aya”, “gogobebe”, “HIP”, and “Mumumumuch”.

NCT Dream Brings heat and trouble

Believe it or not, “Jaemin, the definition of sexy” is a factual caption in NCT Dream’s section. Just like ENHYPEN, the boy band had special reminders to follow, like showing off their most “sexy”, “tough” and “cute” concepts – even though they’re all concepts. various versions of “cute,” complete with Jisung pulling a ring from his pocket and proposing to more or less 44,000 people.

Although two members Mark and Haechan could not be present that night, the remaining 5 amateurs did not disappoint. In fact, they made the best of the situation, covering up teammates’ parts with ease in a fiery setlist that went from “Hot Sauce”, “Ridin”, to “Hello Future”, and then their latest single ‘Glacil Mode’.

Kai is built differently

It’s not that you can’t see how Kai has the ability to read spells through the screen, but seeing him move live is just… different. There is the flow of a performer who has been doing this for over a decade, the warm personality of Kim Jong-in (his name), the care and craftsmanship of an individual who gives it all. himself on stage. Closing the festival in a grand manner, the EXO member also said that he personally chose the setlist: his latest single “Peaches”, favorite song “Vanilla”, slow jam “To Be Honest” and debut performance solo “Mmmh”.

kpop.flex day one recap kai
EXO’s Kai. Credit: KPOP.FLEX

More to come in 2023

At the end of the festival, it was also announced that KPOP.FLEX would return to Frankfurt next year on June 17 and 18. Although this year’s edition hasn’t even ended yet, the public’s enthusiastic cheers prove that Europe is ready for the next tournament.

Stay tuned for the highlights of Day 2, featuring performances by MONSTA X, AB6IX, IVE, Dreamcatcher, MAMAMOO, (G)I-DLE and Kai.

https://www.nme.com/features/music-features/kpop-flex-frankfrut-2022-recap-day-one-two-gi-dle-kai-ive-enhypen-mamamoo-nct-dream-ab6ix-monsta-x-dreamcatcher-3225738?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=kpop-flex-frankfrut-2022-recap-day-one-two-gi-dle-kai-ive-enhypen-mamamoo-nct-dream-ab6ix-monsta-x-dreamcatcher (G)I-DLE, Kai, MAMAMOO and more

Emma James

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