Manila, Philippines was set ablaze last September 23, 2023, as Kdrama actor and K-pop sensation Ok Taecyeon of 2PM graced the country with his very first solo fan meeting “2023 OK TAECYEON IN MANILA: SpecialTY”. Held at the New Frontier Theater in Cubao, the event was a spectacular showcase of music, talent, and fan interactions, leaving his fans the Hottest with cherished memories they will treasure for a lifetime.
The evening began with a burst of energy as Taecyeon took to the stage to perform his hit song Magic. His powerful vocals and charismatic stage presence sent waves of excitement through the crowd, who sang along with him, creating a euphoric atmosphere.
Loud Heartbeats for Taecyeon in Manila
“Hello! Ako ay si “Borta” Taecyeon. Namimiss ko kayo talaga. Welcome po sa lahat dito. Sobrang masaya ako ang simula ay ngayon dito sa Pilipinas,” (Hello, I am Macho Taecyeon. I really missed you all. Welcome everyone! I am super happy to start here in the Philippines) Taecyeon said in Filipino as he welcomed his PH Hottest in this first Asian Fan Meeting.
When asked about how he feels to finally meet his fans in the Philippines again, his response was, “Right now all I can say is I am very very grateful. I mean, it’s raining outside. Your time is precious. Let’s make it fun tonight!”
It has been ten years since Ok Taecyeon visited the country with his Kpop group 2pm for the “What Time Is It: 2PM Live Tour”, and a lot of things had happened since for this South Korean rapper, singer, songwriter, actor and entrepreneur. From a blossoming acting career in several hit TV series and the silver screen, guestings in variety shows and reality shows, hosting gigs, and of course a growing discography. Through these years, his Filipino fans grew with him to support the multi-talented star.
“It’s been ten years, I am very grateful for all the love. And it’s quite amazing from here that I can see all your faces tonight. There are some men in the audience… Yeaaa Bortaaa! … Thank you, once again. It’s been too long since I’ve been here. Like I said, I feel the love so I want to stay here longer. It makes me want to come back very very very soon.”
The TY in SpecialTY
To explain his fan conference’s title SpecialTY, Taecyeon said that he just wants to have his name on it, and to make this day special for the fans. True enough, every segment of this special event has a TY (Taec-yeon) on it.
In the TYMI TYIME (TMI Time) segment, the South Korean star answered several questions flashed on the big LED screens under the categories 2PM, Heartbeat (his recent Kdrama), and Taecyeon. In between the games (which he all answered correctly), Taecyeon did heart poses and wore a tiger headband much to his fans’ pleasure.
“First of all, heart poses, I don’t usually do that. I only do it for you guys.”
What truly set this fan meeting apart was the deep connection Taecyeon shared with his fans. Throughout the evening, lucky attendees also had the chance to take a selfie or get a hug from Taecyeon. He also read some of the fan notes pre-written by Hottest before the program, one of which said, “Taecyeon I’ve waited for you for ten years. Thank you for coming back. I love you to the moon and saturn. I’m always here to support you. Balik ka ha. Mahal kita sobra. Can I get a hug?” Taecyeon obliged to all requests, going down the stage to be closer to his fans!
As the fancon host said, “Hindi basta lahat ganyan a!”. TY, Taecyeon!
In the next segment called “SpecialTY – Moment Memory”, the actor-idol commented on several photos they projected on the LED screen, most of them were behind-the-scenes from his recent Korean drama “Heartbeat”. These small moments captured by family, friends, or workmates offered insights into his life and experiences in the entertainment industry, allowing fans to get to know the person behind the star.
When asked for his Korea travel recommendations, Taecyeon grinned and said, “Drinking, obviously. Depends on the taste you really like. If you like the cultural part of Korea, or Kpop artists, go to entertainment companies. Orrr JYP. If you like Kdrama (go to shooting locations). Food-wise .. thinks .. you know those green bottles…”
He also said that his favorite Korean food is whatever he makes at home, or samgyetang during summertime.
To signal the second part of his fan meeting, Taecyeon went back onstage with a performance of Vampire, a soundtrack of his Kdrama “Heartbeat”. He also sang a very popular Filipino song “Forevermore” by Side A, which really touched his PH Hottest.
“It’s been ten years. It’s a song you will never ever hear from me again. (Because) I’ll prepare something new next time. Thank you,” he said.
The “Hottest” Connection
One of the most unforgettable moments came during the meet and greet session, where fans had the opportunity to receive personalized gifts from Taecyeon. From polaroid photo moments, to a reusable cup that he doodled and signed on, and even a pour-over coffee that the idol-actor prepared himself onstage (handed in a limited edition tumbler merch), the joy and excitement on the faces of fans as they received these precious gifts from their idol were simply heartwarming.
In addition to these, Taecyeon did a “morning call” so fans can record and save his voice on their phones to listen to their favorite guy every start of the day. He did it in Filipino, no less!
“Hottest, gumising ka na. Kailangan mong pumasok sa paaralan / trabaho..”, and “Pag bilang ko ng tatlo, gising na.. three, two, one, gising na.. Kailangan mong pumasok sa trabaho,” the actor said as every phone in NFT were up in the air.
The fan meeting was filled with special surprises and announcements, including a fan project video for the idol. It was a very touching surprise, a fan said that a lot of them have graduated from school already, are living their own lives as adults, but will never forget Taecyeon. They even showed projects PH Hottest made under his name, from rice wreaths to charity works.
“I know you guys have always been around. I am forever grateful. I am overwhelmed with my feelings. I am not going to cry… Mahal ko kayo sobra,” the actor replied after seeing the video.
A Fan Meeting to Remember
“I can’t believe the time was fast. I’m speechless right now, but it’s almost the end of my fan meeting. Did you guys have fun tonight? I definitely did as well. I loved every moment I shared with you. What’s the best part of the fan meeting tonight?” To which the crowd replied in unison, “YOU!”
As the curtain was about to close during Taecyeon’s first-ever Manila fan meeting, the idol took photos with his Hottest, and performed several more songs for his fans including Tok Tok Tok, and 2PM songs Champagne, Promise (I’ll Be), Jump, and Hands Up.
“Love how I can see every one of you smile from the audience. Makes me smile as well. Thank you for choosing to spend time with me. I will try my best to come back and be a better entertainer who will make you smile… Thank you for supporting and always loving me.”
The crowd left the venue with smiles on their faces, hearts full of love, and a newfound bond with Taecyeon that transcended the stage. It was a night that will be remembered by fans as an unforgettable experience, a testament to the power of music and the connection between artist and audience.
Special thanks to PULP Live World for the press conference invite.