A message to all BoA fans across the world,
So I travelled across the Pacific Ocean to see BoA 2015 NOWNESS Live in Japan, and I had the best time of my life. I barely spoke any Japanese (apparently listening to BoA for about 10 years doesnâ€™t really help on Japanese conversation) and it was my first BoA live concert and first time going to Tokyo and Japan. Forced to travel alone because it was a busy time of the year for my friends, I lived up to the promise that Iâ€™ll go watch BoA the next time she performs in Japan, which was a promise I made to myself one year ago after 2014â€™s â€œWhoâ€™s Backâ€ concert.
NOWNESS can be summarized as a BoA 15 year celebration concert. The list of songs was plenty, because about half of the time the songs were cut short into medleys in order to fit in as many of her classic tracks as possible. She ran through the popular hit tracks from every album all the way from 2000â€™s â€œID: Peace Bâ€ to 2015â€™s â€œKiss My Lipsâ€, singing in Japanese if the song was available or otherwise in Korean. Obviously it was impossible to include everything because she simply has so much history.
Those of you who watched her concerts over the years would know that the songs in her Korean concerts were mainly fast paced, primarily focused on dancing. In Japan, it would be half dance tracks and half ballads. NOWNESS Live in Japan was imported from her earlier Korean performance in August. Thus, it had more fast tracks than usual. Itâ€™s great nonetheless because it kept everyone on their feet for the entire concert!
Because many of the songs were cut short, this concert was probably less difficult to sing than her previous live concerts. Still, her singing was flawless, especially in the ballads showing her great ability with alternating head voice and falsetto smoothly. Nowadays many singers who canâ€™t sing live (nevermind dance at the same time) would cut short the end note of a phrase in order to save breath, versus holding it until the end. BoA sang like she did in her CDs, hitting every pitch and holding notes for full duration vibratos. She was good even until the last song â€œMeri Kuriâ€, something that she wasnâ€™t able to do at every concert previously as you would notice fatigue in her voice. Her singing had truly matured over the years.
During a medley section, the stageâ€™s background screen played the MV of the song that BoA was currently singing. It was fascinating to see her sing and dance in perfect synchronization to the MVs.
BoA never ceased to impress her audience with her world class dancing, and NOWNESS was no exception. Once again she delivered with the finest dance moves and perfect timing with the background dancers. From the best of hip-hop dancing such as in â€œSparkâ€, to sexy moves in â€œKiss My Lipsâ€, to the lovely and cute routine in â€œGreen Lightâ€, to Latin style dancing in â€œValentiâ€, the concert was a display of her wide variety of dancing talent. But, knowing she is BoA, she always takes every opportunity to make things better. In NOWNESS, she turned the instrumental break of â€œClockworkâ€ into a Tango ballroom dance routine with a male partner. The routine was extremely difficult, including multiple sets of 360 degree turns with the male dancer swinging BoA in the air, and BoAâ€™s full extension back-bending dance poses. The crowd couldnâ€™t stop screaming, nor did I.
The concert was full of highlights, but to me the climax was at about two-thirds through when she sang the new release song â€œLookbookâ€ at the end of a medley series. She sang the entire â€œLookbookâ€, including a separate dance routine break and a rap part. To top it all off,
at the very last beat of the song (EDITED: I remembered incorrectly), she sang another high tempo energetic song "Masayume Chasing" afterwards, where the stage shot out silver paper ribbons into the audience at the song's climax. I yelled harder than I had ever before in my life.
Every concert has interludes where the singer leaves the stage to change outfit and drink water. Usually the band plays background music for a few minutes until the singer returns. Whatâ€™s different in NOWNESS was that the band only did this about twice. In her other interludes, the background screen played videos of her. There were documentary videos of her young days in training, videos that resembled her â€œMaking ofâ€¦â€ various music videos, and reality-like videos showing â€œA day in the life of BoAâ€ scenes (filmed by BoA wearing a head camera so you could see things from her 1st person perspective). It was a great way to keep the audience entertained rather than being brought into a lull by the band. The videos made some people cry, it brought us shivers, it brought us laughter, and it made everyone smile. Again, with her long history in the music industry, there was so much content to create from.
Speaking of smiles, you can tell a singer is enjoying the performance if she smiles throughout the song. Even during her nervousness and fatigue, BoA smiled throughout the entire concert, which was something that she couldnâ€™t do in her earlier days. It was pleasing to see that she wasnâ€™t overworked leading up to the concert and was able to relax and perform the music she loved.
Photo with BoA for 100 lucky fans
During the official souvenirs purchase period before the concert, there was a booth to pre-order BoAâ€™s new â€œLookbookâ€ single (which came with a BoA cover folder). Those who bought the CD will be given a lucky sticker to open, which would tell you if you won or not. Upon winning, you would be able to have a personal photo with BoA after the concert, limited to the first 100 people. Unfortunately I didnâ€™t win, but there were many â€œdedicatedâ€ fans who bought multiple CDs until they won. I realized that it was a smart way to promote CD sales, but I was even more impressed by the fact that a world class artist would still stay behind after a concert to please her fans.
Make yourself a promise
NOWNESS was a great celebration of her 15 year milestone. I hope BoA continues to make great music for us forever, but at some point it must come to an end. For an artist to be in the music industry for 15 years, it makes me wonder whether sheâ€™s a little burnt out. Sheâ€™s not getting any younger and full length concerts take a tough beating on her body. Her popularity is dropping and in order to stay successful in the industry, sheâ€™s already diverged in other areas such as in movies, dramas, TV shows, music writing, and other things that require less work on the body. So, if she performs a concert again, make yourself a promise to go see her at all cost. See for yourself why she is the Best of Asia and Best of All. I can promise you this is an experience youâ€™ll never forget.
Edited by travoltajc, 01 March 2016 - 07:30 PM.