K-Pop duo AA enthralls Cebu

Fans went wild when AA
performed Nayana (Pick Me), which was the theme song of
Produce 101 Season 2 which
catapulted them to fame.

FANS of Korea’s hit reality survival program “Produce 101” were treated to a special show on Sunday afternoon by K-Pop duo AA for the grand store launch of Korean eyewear brand Ironic Iconic by Verona Optical at SM Seaside City Cebu.

AA is composed of Jeong Dongsu and Kim Namhyung who go by the stage names Arkay and Add Corn, respectively.

Although they have already been to the Philippines several times since last year for fan meetings, workshops and guestings, it was the duo’s first time in the Queen City of the South.

“Everyone is gwapa and gwapo (beautiful and handsome),” shouted Namhyung when asked by the event’s host, Mimi Lim, about his first impression of Cebu.

As if by cue, he immediately added that he wanted to try Cebu’s world-famous dried mangoes during his stay here.

For Dongsu, what he would like to taste while in Cebu is “sutukil” or sugba, tula, kilaw—a popular Cebuano term for restaurants that serve grilled meat and seafood, seafood soup and raw seafood in vinegar, coconut milk and spices.

AA was originally part of five-member K-Pop group Offroad which debuted in 2012 but has gone under the radar for the past few years.

Namhyung and Dongsu debuted as the duo AA last August after participating in Mnet’s “Produce 101” Season 2, a show where 101 trainees from different entertainment agencies went through weekly missions and performances until the top 11 were identified through votes from Korean citizens.

The duo performed some of their hit songs including their latest tracks Flex and Diamonds during last Sunday’s store launch.

But what brought the house down was when the two made a surprise presentation when they joined some local dancers in performing “Nayana” (Pick Me) which is the theme song of the show Produce 101 Season 2.

The fans in attendance immediately roared in chorus and sang along to the highly popular song.

Among those with the loudest cheer was 19-year-old Jeptha Conson, a BS Information Technology student who also works as an ESL teacher in the afternoon. “I decided to ditch work today (last Sunday) because I think this is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

I was satisfied even if I was absent at work, it was worth it. I was amazed with their visuals and their live performance.

Words can’t describe how happy I feel right now,” he told Cebu Daily News. Conson said he was a huge fan of “Produce 101” and even watched the show twice already.

He was part of 100 “early birds” who came to the event as early as 1 p.m. or four hours before the show started.

They got to have a group photo with AA afterwards. Aside from the early birds, another 100 fans also scored VIP tickets by buying at least P300 worth of products from Verona.

Each of them got to shake hands, have a selfie and receive autographs from AA at the Ironic Iconic shop after the event. Friends Rhea Lyn Reyes, 17, Jackielyn Ledesma, 22, and Deanne Nneka Daig, 22, were among those who availed of the VIP promo.

“I felt really hyped. It was an amazing experience to be able to see a K-Pop artist.

It freed me from my stress due to school works like our research,” said Rhea Lyn who only planned to avail of the early bird promo but decided to purchase a pair of contact lens to get a VIP ticket after she felt envious of her friends.

For her part, Jackielyn said she could not pass up on the chance to see Namhyung and Dongsu in the flesh. “It’s a completely different feeling to be able to see them in front of you.

I used to just see them on my laptop or phone. Now, I saw them perform live and even joined in the chants,” she said.

But aside from seeing their idols live, they also enjoyed meeting new people who were also like them, fans of the show and its contestants.

“It’s a nice feeling to see people around you who also know and like K-Pop.

It’s nice that you can be yourself and fangirl all you want,” Deanne said. The three even prepared a gift for AA, giving them two huge packs of dried mangoes together with handwritten letters and well-wishes for the two during hi-touch and selfie session for VIPs. Dongsu and Namhyung fared well in “Produce 101.”

They survived the first cut from 101 to 60. During the show’s position evaluation, Dongsu performed the song “Amazing Kiss” by BoA together with other trainees who chose singing as their position.

On the other hand, Namhyung performed a dance of Flo Rida’s Right Round with other trainees who chose dance as their position. Unfortunately, they didn’t make the cut for the Top 35 contestants of the show.

The show ended last June with the show’s Top 11 trainees namely Kang Daniel, Park Jihoon, Lee Daehwi, Kim Jaehwan, Ong Seongwoo, Park Woojin, Lai Guanlin, Yoon Jisung, Hwang Minhyun, Bae Jinyoung and Ha Sungwoon.

The 11 trainees debuted as Wanna One last August and have since swept music charts and shows, raking in a total of 15 trophies for their debut song “Energetic” which has become the song of any K-Pop group with the most trophies for this year.

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