Tuesday 13th of June it happened, the 2023 Korean Culture Festival powered by Hyundai, I travelled to Amsterdam to be there along with a whole lot of other Korean Culture enthusiasts. Doors opened at 17:00 and the show started at 19:00. When we came in there were already really a lot of people; there was a stand from the dutch KPOP webshop www.heyhallyu.nl and a Korean skincare shop of which I forgot the name, I’m sorry. Both had the longest line of people waiting to buy from them and I didn’t feel like waiting in line due to the heat; when I came back after the show there was still a mega line but there was no more KPOP albums to buy.
Invited by Hyundai I got my bands to go up to the special balcony and just spend my time there until the countdown started. I had a great view of the hall this way. When the show started two presenters spoke in both dutch and English which was a great addition to those who don’t speak one of the two languages. First the president Young Chan Chow of the Korean Embassy in The Netherlands was announced and he held a speech of ten minutes about how Korean Culture is becoming bigger in the Netherlands and how close the dutch and Korean people and politics have always been; also thanking everybody for being there. Following him Jungpyo Lee, the president of the Dutch division of Hyundai spoke; We’ve heard him speak before at Hyundai Oranje Spektakel where we got to see EVERGLOW so he greeted us with a welcome back; Also promising us more of these kinds of culture festivals in the near future.
When he finished we got to see a laser show about the new Hyundai KONA, Which they were giving away at the end of the show. This was really cool to see because they made all the features of the car light up in laser!
Then finally it was time for the first artist of the evening, We started with the singer songwriter Paul Kim. He came up and talked to everyone a little bit about how excited he was to be on stage in Amsterdam and how he would love to do a full show some time. After explaining the reason behind the song he started with the song “Would You Like Some Coffee?” (커피 한 잔 할래요).. He said that he felt like this would be the best wait to show interest if you met someone and not to seem too creepy. He was sweet and funny and I’d love to see him sometime in the future. He sang two or three songs but then ended up coming back after they would move on to the next artist but he asked to come back and sing another song because he wasn’t satisfied with his exit. It was very cute and he was sending hearts and waving at everyone throughout his songs.
After he left JayB Baby came to perform Rover by Kai as a dance cover. JayB Baby got to perform got at the KPOP World Festival in 2022. She got to tell a little about her experience there and everyone cheered for her. That’s one of the reasons why I love going to things related to KPOP, fans are always very supportive of everyone doing amazing. There was so much cheering for her.
Julia was next, a dutch singer with a passion for South Korea, she sang a song and danced to it and it was so good! Her performance and stage presence was great followed by dance crew ABM Crew who did a girl group song I didn’t recognise I’m sorry! I’m always jealous how well people dance while I myself have two left feet! After this violinist Mi Sun Hiltermann performed three songs, Starting with a traditional South Korean song and two other songs that were absolutely amazing, one of which was Smooth Criminal by Michael Jackson.
After this we finally got the KPOP Idols a lot of people came for, CBS. Oh gosh were they cute and excited in their intro. They did three or four songs and everyone cheered as loud as can be. I noticed also that a lot of people brought their favourite groups lightsticks and were waving it all throughout the show.
After this they gave away a brand new Hyundai KONA and a LG TV and both people were so surprised they won something like that and this concluded the festival.
All in all I really like the effort the South Korean Embassy and Hyundai put into these free events and I hope they never stop, even when they start asking for money I think it would still be a big hit.. Maybe we all need to request them to do a big event with multiple idol groups and other South Korean artists……..I’m sure people will pay for this.
Anyway! Thank you Korean Embassy and Hyundai for organising this! Below you can watch my recap video of the show with bits of all the artists!