BLACKPINK brought the Great Oak Stage stage alive this evening at American Express presents BST Hyde Park, with 17 of their biggest tracks and three outfit changes.
Jisoo, Jennie, Rosé and Lisa signalled their arrival on stage in sleek white outfits and against a hot pink background, kicking off their show with Pink Venom. Introducing themselves to their young crowd, they performed a mix of K-Pop favourites including Kick It, Pretty Savage, How You Like That, and Shut Down. Even their first ever single, Whistle – the one that made them famous – was among the setlist. Moving between the main stage and a second platform at the end of the walkway, every step the girls took towards the audience only evoked louder screams.
“We didn’t expect this much energy from London,” they smiled. “London, what a nice breeze you have.”
A quick change of outfit made way for the ‘solo’ part of the show – where Jennie, Jisoo, Rosé and, finally, Lisa each took the lead on vocals to one of their favourite tracks, to enjoy a moment of the limelight to themselves. While Jennie took on You & Me and Jisoo opted for Flower, Rosé’s chosen track was Gone + On The Ground, while Lisa picked Money. The section was bookended by a carefully crafted routine by eight male, and then eight female, dancers.
An hour and a half of K-pop heaven later, and drawing their set to a close, the girls appeared in all black for Boombayah, Lovesick Girls and Playing With Fire. Then, it was the turn of Tally and Ddu-du, Ddu-du for the great finale.
“We’re absolutely honoured to perform here at Hyde Park,” Rosé exclaimed. “It’s a dream come true!”
Earlier in the evening, 24-year-old Sabrina Carpenter dazzled the crowd with her set, featuring highlight tracks Looking At Me, Bet You Wanna and Paris. Wearing a short and shiny pink dress with thigh high white boots, she announced: “Hey London, I’m Sabrina… There’s so many of you goddamn. I can see you all the way in the back.
“Thank you so much for having us BST. I’m a huge BLACKPINK fan, before then let’s get you warmed up!”
She even performed her own rendition of Abba’s Lay All Your Love On Me, introducing an old classic to young fans.
South Korean indie rock band The Rose, third on the bill, were a huge hit. The band, consisting of Woosung (vocals and guitarist), Dojoon (keyboard), Lee Hajoon (drums), Jaehyeong (bass), beamed with delight at the sea of faces looking back at them, as singer Dojoon telling fans: “I love Hyde Park!”
Belting out one of their early tracks Time, they responded to the audience’s cheers with Yes (“Sometimes saying ‘yes’ can lead to amazing things, an amazing night”), Beauty and the Beast and the catchy Sour.
“We’ve been [a] band for seven years now and we came from Korea and now we’re singing in London… wow! In front of this great crowd. It’s an honour. Thank you so much guys,” Woosung continued. To end, The Rose performed their as yet unannounced new track, giving fans an exclusive thank you for their support.
Saturday’s show began on the Rainbow Stage presented by British Airways with Annika Bennett, a 20-year old songstress from the US, who was thrilled to be performing her trademark introspective pop melodies for Hyde Park. “I haven’t played in London much so I was scared no one would come,” she smiled. She was followed by South Australian pop sensation Peach PRC, who naturally unleashed her single Blondes.
Finally, it was the turn of Californian singer, Rebecca Black, who was lifted on stage by two dancers. Wearing a Vivienne Westwood-style dress and tutu-inspired skirt, her hair in multiple long black plaits, Rebecca wowed her audience with songs including her viral hit, Friday. “I love you London, it weirdly feels like home to me. I adore everything about this city and am grateful to be here tonight. “The last 12 years have been a journey and whether or not you’ve been here along the way, or don’t know who the f*** I am and that’s a slay, moments like this make it all worth it for the feeling.”
Mae Stephens opened the Great Oak Stage this afternoon, showcasing her now much-loved demo track If We Ever Broke Up. “Who’s excited for BLACKPINK? I’m so excited, I’m going to fangirl!” she exclaimed to an equally pumped-up audience. She was followed by the effervescent Caity Baiser, who wore a colourful transparent catsuit, with bikini underneath for her set. “I find it easy going out on stage,” she explained. “Because I always get to be myself.”
A triumphant day of live music on the fifth day of American Express presents BST Hyde Park 2023.
BST Hyde Park 2023 returns this month for its 10th anniversary year and we’ve got even more legendary headliners this year: All Things Orchestral presented by Myleene Klass and featuring Alfie Boe (23 June), P!NK (24 and 25 June), Guns N’ Roses (30 June), Take That (1 July), BLACKPINK (2 July), Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band (6 and 8 July), Billy Joel (7 July) and Lana Del Rey (9 July).