Asia’s Korean band fad is going global with top Western entertainment venues hosting performances by Korean dancers and musical artists.
K-Pop Goes the World
Surprising Attendance in California
The lights go on. The pounding dance beat starts. And 12,000 screaming fans rise to their feet in the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. Acclaimed record producer Quincy Jones watches from his suite. Is this Beyonce? Rhianna? Lady Gaga? Nope. It’s an all-star concert featuring the likes of Girls Generation, Super Junior, BoA, TVXQ, f(x), EXO and SHINee. How can bands not played on American Top 40 radio fill a U.S. arena? Well, these are Korea’s top pop bands, and they played S.M. Entertainment’s third world tour on May 20, 2012. SME, a Seoul-based independent record producer, has held previous world tours with stops in New York, Los Angeles, Paris, Tokyo, Shanghai, Beijing and Taipei. Yeah, but was Anaheim’s Honda Center filled with 12,000 Koreans and Korean Americans? Nope. Around two thirds of the fans were non- Korean, a sign of the spreading popularity of Korean pop.