K-Drama/K-Pop

ENHYPEN: ‘When we practise, we imagine that there are fans in front of us’

My third time with Heeseung, Jay, Jake, Sunghoon, Sunoo, Jungwon, Ni-ki

'Kumusta! Salamat po!'—Filipino words ENHYPEN have learned, fourth time around. (Photo by Lem Atienza)

I have seen ENHYPEN almost every time they came to the Philippines. The only time I didn’t see them was during their fan meet for a beauty brand, and that was because I was sick.

I was there when the seven-member Korean boy group—composed of Heeseung, Jay, Jake, Sunghoon, Sunoo, Jungwon, and Ni-ki—wrapped up their first world tour, Manifesto, in Manila with a three-day concert extravaganza from Feb. 3 to 5 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

I was one of the 25,000 fans who trooped to New Clark City Stadium in Capas, Tarlac, when ENHYPEN closed their  Fate World Tour on Feb. 3, 2024.

Today, May 27, marks the third time I have laid eyes on ENHYPEN, this time at the press conference for the Bench-ENHYPEN A Sweet Experience fan meeting, set for the Mall of Asia Arena Tuesday, May 28, 2024.

Sunghoon, Jungwon, Sunoo (Photo by Lem Atienza)

The boys, the new Global Benchsetters, have been in the Philippines four times, so the press conference MC asked them if they have learned any Filipino words.

Sunoo, Jay (Photo by Lem Atienza)

“There’s one word, kumusta. Salamat po. Pogi. Sunoo pogi,” said Sunoo.

“It’s been four months,” said the group’s leader Jungwon. “We were here for the Fate tour in New Clark City. Before that, we were here for Manifesto. We are very happy to have received so much love from Filipinos.”

“We are very joyful to work together with Bench, the Philippines’ leading fashion and lifestyle brand. Thank you to Bench for the opportunity for ENHYPEN to come back to the Philippines and have an enjoyable time with Bench,” said Heeseung.

Every ENHYPEN member looks so good in Bench’s clothes so that when they left Incheon airport wearing outfits from the Filipino retailer, fans cracked jokes that they made the shirts look almost luxurious. What is not a joke is that the ENHYPEN boys are the perfect fashion brand ambassadors.

All six boys pointed at Ni-ki as the group’s most fashion-forward member

All six boys pointed at Ni-ki as the group’s most fashion-forward member.

“My fashion style right now is very different from my old style. But if I were to describe it, I would say it’s loose and street style. I am also very interested in trying different fashion styles,” said Ni-Ki.

“I really like loose clothes, oversized ones,” said Jay.

One of the questions asked ENHYPEN was, which of the clothes they wore for the Bench TVC they preferred personally.

Sunghoon pointed to the fit he wore in the Bench shoot, specifically the letter jacket. He said he also likes the t-shirt with the ENHYPEN initials because it makes him very proud to be a member of the group.

If there is one thing that ENHYPEN is extra proud of, it is their fanbase not only in Korea but also in different parts of the world, including the Philippines.

“Even from the beginning, we wanted  to go overseas. That was always our goal. Even though we sing in Korean, I feel like people all over the world can relate to our music and I think that is such a wonderful thing. Through music, everyone in the world can enjoy ENHYPEN,” said Jake.

“What motivates us are our fans, the ENGENES. We do our performances to give the best of the best to our fans. When we practise in our studio, we imagine that there are fans in front of us so that we will get better and better,” said Ni-Ki.

“Even here in the Philippines, we see a lot of people singing along to our songs. Every time, we hear that, we feel very blessed,” he said.

Ni-ki, Heeseung, Jake (Photo by Lem Atienza)

Jake disclosed that ENGENES can experience a lot of new things from their new album.

“I feel like our upcoming album really portrays that. I can’t say too much right now but there will be a lot of new stuff. There will be things you haven’t see. It’s gonna have a lot of new aspects that most of the fans have not seen,” said Jake.

Speaking of the Philippines, Sunghoon said he would love to visit Cebu and Boracay. He would like to try jet-skiing.

The group’s leader Jungwon ended the press conference by saying, “Mahal kita,” and the members followed suit.

About author

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She is a writer, newspaper columnist, wife, mother and dog lover. She champions animal rights and is an HIV awareness advocate. She's been a K-pop fan since the late 1990s and loves SF9, EXO's Xiumin and most girl groups

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