Filipino ELFs are princesses for a night in Super Junior’s Super Show 7


Last Saturday, Super Junior returned to Manila after five years to perform in front of Filipino ELFs (Everlasting Friends) at the Mall of Asia Arena. After 14 years in the K-Pop industry, Super Junior’s current lineup of Leeteuk, Heechul, Yesung, Shindong, Eunhyuk, Siwon, and Donghae to show the new generation’s idols how it’s done. Super Show 7’s concept is centered around the groups’ latest album Play, which won a bonsang at the 2017 Seoul Music Awards, and its repackage, Replay, as well as some of their greatest hits.

In the introductory VCR, ELFs are immersed in a world where they are invited to a high profile party by a stranger, played by the different Super Junior members in suits. As expected, the opening performance of “Black Suit” from the Play album, instantly raised the energy in the arena along with the screams of thousands of adoring fans who have waited for the group’s return. The members, clad in different suit styles from sharp suit jackets and preppy button downs to billowy blouses and wide-legged pants, move to the beat of their dance tracks and the fans’ roars.

During breaks in performances, the members took turns speaking to the fans in a mix of Korean and Filipino languages. “Miss ko na kayo. Namiss niyo ba kami?,” rapper Shindong asked while slowly reading off a crumpled sheet of paper. Between the mahal ko kayos and mabuhays, leader Leeteuk promised the ELF princesses (“Mga princesa,” he called them) that they would give their best performances for their one night in Manila. They also acknowledged the presence of the family of Manny Pacquiao and Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach, a known ELF.

Finally! A true fan girl moment for me! @siwonchoi 💙💙💙 #SS7Manila

A post shared by Pia Wurtzbach (@piawurtzbach) on

The Super Show stage was immense, with part of satellite stage reaching past the standing sections up to the VIP section. During their mid-tempo songs like “This Is Love,” “One More Chance,” and “It’s You,” the members went up the platforms and greeted the fans. Many ELFs took this opportunity to reach out and shake hands and show off their cheering banners. While Super Junior ran backstage to change outfits after performing “Lo Siento”, their dancers prepared a special performance of “U”, “Oppa Oppa” and “Chok Chok” to keep the crowd going.

After the short break, the members finally emerged—the men who wore suits earlier were transformed into boys in their high school uniforms. When Leeteuk interviewed his members about their past school life, main dancer Eunhyuk proclaimed that while he wasn’t a very good student, he perfected his dancing and even demonstrated the moves to classic K-Pop boy group H.O.T.’s “We Are The Future.” What followed was a refreshing, One Direction-esque dance performance of “Runaway,” “Too Many Beautiful Girls,” and their 10th anniversary single “Magic” with the members running around a classroom set-up of arm chairs and blackboards. At this point, ELFs were weary from all the cheering but Super Junior did not hold back. The stage was flooded with red lights and the members performed rock remixes of their dance hits “Sorry Sorry,” “Bonamana,” “Super Duper,” and “Mr. Simple.” Heechul, who cannot dance as intensely due to a previous injury, instead performed an aggressive drum solo between songs.

After the final VCR, Leeteuk took to the satellite stage to read a thank you letter to ELFs. “The same girls who have listened to Super Junior and have always cheered for Super Junior became college students, someone’s lady, and a child’s mother,” he read as he pushed back his tears. “The time passing by may be sad but natural. We were happy to share these precious memories with you all and spend the same time under the same sky.”

After the encore performance of their classic hit “Miracle,” the members lingered in the sapphire blue ocean created by their light sticks and promised their princesses that they will be back with Kyuhyun and Ryeowook after the two finish their military service. Siwon in his final message to ELFs said in English, “Love is a souvenir. Never let it be forgotten. Thank you for showing us how much you love us! Next time we come back, it’ll be all of the members. We’ll have a comeback very soon. God bless the Philippines.”

InqPOP!/Vanessa Reventar


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