My Experience Attending GAYO DAEJUN Concert in South Korea for Free!

31 December 2018

Our view at the Gayo Daejun Music Festival.

For Malay version, click here. Heads up, for non k-pop fans, sorry as you might get bored. 

After a year, finally I've decided to share my experience on attending Gayo Daejun Concert 2017 in South Korea. Yeap, it's not the recent one but from last freaking year. For those who don't know, Gayo Daejun is one of the biggest music festival in South Korea, presenting the performances by some of the most popular K-pop idols throughout the year. Some of the big names include BTS, Exo, Blackpink, Twice, Red Velvet, Gfriend, Got 7, NCT, Winner, Sunmi, IU, Heize, and more. Phewww that's a lot.

How in the world did you get the tickets?

Ok if this is the question you're going to ask me 'coz you're looking for a way to attend it in the future, it wouldn't help much even if I told you how I got in. Why, you asked? 'Coz I scored the tickets by winning a contest from Astro Broadcasting Malaysia and SBS One. Just a simple contest asking "Why you wanna attend Gayo Daejun?", and little did I know my babbling was chosen among thousands of participants to be the winner. Honestly, I always think this sort of contest is fake, until I actually won it. 

Long story short, the flight tickets (Korean Air from Malaysia to Korea), the hotel (4-stars!), the transportation (freaking BMW!), and of course, the concert tickets were fully sponsored. Did I mention ticketS? Yes they generously gave 2, which I chose to brought a K-pop maniac friend with me. So enough with this, let's get into the concert hall, Gocheok Sky Dome.

Pretty good spot we got I must say.

No security check

Omg Korean people is all well-mannered or what? When I attended concert in Malaysia, they checked all my belonging and also did body search. Here, we just pass through like a breeze. I would've brought some food if I know they weren't strict at all. God know how hungry we were after 6-hours of delayed flight + 6 more hours for the flight, and later have to go straight to concert hall since we're already behind our schedule. But what frustrate me the most, I could've brought my camera inside 'coz some even recorded using their freaking DSLR! What a bummer.

We were so hungry later that night. Luckily Korea is rich with street foods.

Light Watch for everyone

Based on my understanding, fan sticks aren't allowed in the hall. Of course people still bring it since there's no baggage search duhhh. So, everyone received "light watch" instead. I don't know what to call it actually. It's a light, to be worn on our hands like a watch. Hence, a light watch? When I thought it couldn't get any cooler, the light watch changes colour in each performances. How cool is that? They can control it to match the fandom colour. So just shake your hand in the air following the melody. And the best part is, we can keep it afterwards. Many thank you for the souvenir!

Thank god it fits my large wrist.

The "live" show apparently not live after all. 

Have you ever wonder how idols change their clothes and props so quickly for next song? I was watching Twice special stage, when I noticed the dress worn on the stage was different from the one on the big screen! It was then I realised the one showed on tv broadcast was actually the prerecorded version. Well, not all performances were pre-recorded. Usually one idol got to perform two songs right? Hence, one is prerecorded and one is live. During the broadcasting of the pre-recorded performance, the idol will still dance and lipsync on the stage for the audiences in the hall. 

I still regret until this day for not bringing camera to record everything.

The K-fans are not multifandom

Why root for one artist when you can love tens or even hundreds. But here, seems like everybody only ship for one or two. While we were screaming like crazy throughout the concert, other Korean fans just mind their own business and only got excited once their favourite idol appeared. Like seriously, two girls behind me, obviously came for the boy groups, couldn't care less, reading their magazine while the girls group perform. Was it considered as disrespectful? I don't know.

Which one do you belong to? Photo credit to Amino Apps.

The fans have so much manner 

What I meant by manner is that no one stood up blocking others at the back no matter how hype you are at the moment. Note that there is no free standing section in this concert. Hence, everyone just sit accordingly. Anddd, they don't even seem to bother to record the concert which I totally respect. They just want to enjoy the show to the fullest. We, on the other hand, really want to record everything whenever possible 'coz this might be our only chance to be in such event. Plus for our instastory of course. There were a handful of people still recorded the concert, but they use dslr instead. We assumed they're probably from fansite. 

This didn't happen during the Gayo Daejun. Photo credit to Billboard.

The hall aren't that warm for the idol to dress thinly

It's freaking winter okay. Yes, the stadium is a closed stadium but I believed there was no heater. It wasn't freezing cold yet wasn't warm either. We still keep our winter coats on. The point is, those idols on stage were only wearing short skirts and thin clothes. Whether they're used with it or they just have to dress in such way for the sake of performances. Hmmm.

The Gocheok Sky Dome, although an indoor stadium, still cold inside. Photo credit to Tripadvisor.

So, that's about it. I don't have much to tell or to show. HD performances are available in Youtube right so my crappy recordings are useless. It is trully once in a lifetime experience. I never dream of seeing all those big names at one night. And the best part is, everything is sponsored. If you want to read on how I spend the rest of my stay in South Korea, read this article on 3 Unpopular Destinations in South Korea You Probably Haven't Visited.

One of the underrated spot in Korea. Click the photo to read the article.