The music billboard doesn’t lack any pop singers or need anymore sad love songs, but Anne-Marie’s signature tropical bubblegum pop brimming with attitude is exactly what we need.

With a hefty dose of goofiness and equal amounts of sass, pop songstress Anne-Marie dominated the stage with her chart-topping tunes and infectious charms at her Capitol Theatre concert on 9 April. She even makes breakups seem contentious, almost a happy thing, as she enthusiastically bopped around the stage hi-fiving fans and exchanging gifts – a lucky fan managed to swap a plushie whale for a drumstick. If you could hear doodles and scribbles, that’s exactly how Anne-Marie sounds like.

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On the back of her highly acclaimed debut album Speak Your Mind, Anne-Marie blasts through hit singles like ‘Alarm’, ‘Ciao Adios’ and ‘Bad Girlfriend’. Every song has its own story, and more likely than not, it was about a cheating boyfriend. She’s been the wronged one, been cheated on, or just fell out of love. The singer joked that she had a penchant for picking the worst men to date, but it’s okay since she got a couple of good songs out of it. Well, maybe she’ll be the next Taylor Swift…?

It’s not just all about cheating exes though. ‘Perfect To Me’ was born when the singer realised that she didn’t feel good about her own body after watching inspiring talks on YouTube, resulting in an anthem for acceptance that reminds us that it’s okay to have anxiety all while inspiring us to feel confident in our own skin – a message that resonated well with Anne-Marie’s diverse crowd of fans.

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The night ended on a high as the versatile singer launched into more EDM-fueled tracks from her high-profile collaborations. As much as Anne-Marie has been hurt by failed romances, she has also friend-zoned her fair share of guys, as told by the feisty ‘FRIENDS’ with Marshmello. And who can forget ‘2002’, the ever so addictive smash that sees Ed Sheeran lending his songwriting prowess to.

The only letdown that left fans wanting more was the clearly noted absence of ‘Rewrite The Stars’, the massive duet that Zac Efron and Zendaya sang in blockbuster movie The Greatest Showman – although she did tease us a little with a short snippet of it before launching into her last song of her set. Guess she has to come back again soon to perform even more songs!

Photo credits: Lushington Entertainments

More related stories: Who Is Anne-Marie? 5 Things You Need To Know About The ‘2002’ Singer-SongwriterInterview: Anne-Marie Talks Ed Sheeran, Positivity And Self Love

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After a gruelling few months since the auditions, the nine remaining finalists of Asia’s Got Talent (AGT) Season 3 had gathered to perform at the final showdown on 4 April, in a bid to clinch the grand prize and score exclusive bragging rights as the coveted winners.

From digital magic to contemporary acrobatics to shadow play, these talented performers never fail to impress with their unique individual skills. Before the season comes to an end during the unveil on 11 April, we sat down with the AGT judging panel David Foster, Anggun and Jay Park to talk about their final thoughts about the show, most memorable moments and more.

On their most memorable moment of season 3

Anggun: I remember the vroom-vroom guy from Malaysia during the auditions. Oh my God, I laughed so hard, I cried! I’m actually a little disappointed that he wasn’t here because he was just so funny.

David Foster: That moment when I got to go up on stage with this Japanese magician. It was really thrilling for me to watch him up-close as he did his magic because I’m an amateur act myself.

Jay Park: Well… I got some underwear flung at me by one of the contestants (laughs). Although it was part of their segment, it was nonetheless very memorable for me.

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On how they judge a performing act

Jay Park: I think that with AGT, there are so many different types of talents that it’s impossible to be an expert in every single field. So I judge based on how the act makes me feel when I’m watching it. If I’m entertained, it’s good for me.

David Foster: For me, I purely judge on what I see, hear and feel.

Anggun: At the end of the day, it’s about whether or not I’ve been touched by a performance, moved by a voice or surprised at how a dance routine has revived something in me. It’s really one of those things where I have to pay attention to when I’m watching them.

On the contestants that didn’t make it

David Foster: There’s only going to be one winner and eight non-winning acts who are going to have to make a decision in their life. “We didn’t win AGT, so what are we going to do next?” Just because they didn’t win here, doesn’t mean that they’re not going to win anywhere else. I guarantee you that out of those eight non-winners, you might just hear from a couple of ’em because they are just so good.

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On what hidden talents they would use for their auditions

David Foster: I’m an amateur magician, so I would try to do magic.

Anggun: I can imitate a snail! (Laughs)

Jay Park: I would probably wrestle a crocodile or something.

On what they would do if they won the show

Anggun: This is one of the biggest platforms in the world where we are reaching millions of people. So I think it’s a great opportunity to put my art in the spotlight and show the world what I’m capable of.

Jay Park: When I first made some money, I bought a couple of gifts for my parents because they’ve done a lot for me. So if I won, I’d keep working on my craft and focus on staying humble and grounded.

David Foster: I’ll probably use the prize money to pay one of my ex-wives (laughs). 

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On the kind of acts they hope to see in the next season

Anggun: We don’t have any comedians so I’d love to be able to see some comedians [on the show]. It’s one of the hardest things in the world to make people laugh and I think that humour is its own language. Finding that one person who has that comedic talent that can transcend culture, would be something I’m definitely going to look out for.

Jay Park: I would really just like to see a good rapper. There are a lot of great hip-hop rappers in Asia so I think it’s time to see a real solid rapper grace the AGT stage.

On advice for future auditionees of the show

David Foster: If you’ve seen the talent over the last three seasons and are afraid to enter, then you should not enter. Because if you’re fearless and really want to make it that badly, nothing will and can stop you.

Anggun: I agree!

Jay Park: I think seeing all the past contestants on the show should be something that will motivate you to work harder. If they are better than you, you’d know what the standard is and how to surpass it. It’s a sort of blueprint that should inspire and spur you, which makes the process a lot easier than those who competed without any benchmarks.

Photo credits: AXN Asia

Asia’s Got Talent Season Three Grand Finals: Results airs 11 April 2019 (Thursday) at 8.30pm on AXN!

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There’s plenty to be excited this April as the K-pop world readies a lineup of exciting comebacks for fans around the world. Amongst the list of idol acts is the highly-anticipated return of global sensation BTS with their upcoming EP, Map of the Soul: Persona.

Having just dropped their comeback trailer two weeks ago, the septet is back with another surprise teaser for ‘Boy With Luv’, which is created in collaboration with American pop singer Halsey. Dubbed by BTS stans as the collaboration of the century, this project has been a long time coming since both parties first met at the 2017 Billboard Music Awards, where they showed us exactly what was it like to be #FriendshipGoals.

Although this long-awaited collaboration took two whole years to happen, fans have finally been rewarded for their patience with this partnership becoming a reality. Despite getting just about 46 seconds of visuals and just a hint of a tune, it’s more than enough for ARMYs to blow up social media in anticipation for the full music video release on 12 April, 7pm.

From Steve Aoki to Nicki Minaj to now Halsey, the boys have shown that Korean pop music isn’t just limited to Asia anymore. Together with the rapidly-growing size of the BTS ARMY, we’re pretty sure that the list of would-be collaborators will also continue to increase, ideally bringing the K-pop idol group closer to realising their Grammy dream.

In case you’ve missed it, here’s the first teaser video for BTS’ new track ‘Boy With Luv’ in collaboration with Halsey.

More related stories: BTS Just Teased A Possible Collaboration With Ed Sheeran And We’re Losing ItThe Official BTS x Mattel Dolls Are Here, And Fans Are DividedAll The BT21 Collaborations Every ARMY Should Add To Their BTS Collection

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Entertainment

TWICE To Return To Singapore This July For Their 2019 World Tour!

8 Apr 2019 by Chew Hui Ling

Third time’s the charm indeed: the hugely popular K-pop girl group TWICE has just announced that they will be embarking on their upcoming 2019 world tour, which will mark their third time performing on our sunny shores!

After a massively successful concert in Singapore as part of their TWICE 2ND TOUR ‘TWICELAND ZONE 2: Fantasy Park series in June last year, local ONCEs can look forward to a handful of new tunes off their seventh mini album Fancy You as the girls are set to make their spring comeback this April.

According to the concert poster that was released through their official social media accounts, TWICE will be kicking off their tour in Seoul on 25 and 26 May before heading off to Bangkok, Manila and Singapore in the coming months. Shortly after, the nine-member act will make their rounds in North America before coming back to Asia for one last show in Kuala Lumpur on 17 August.

Check out their full concert schedule below!

TWICE World Tour 2019

No other details are revealed as of now, so do stay tuned for updates!

More related stories: 7 Thoughts That Went Through Every Fan’s Head During TWICE’s Singapore ConcertBLACKPINK Came, Conquered And Won Hearts At First Singapore Concert

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8 K-pop Easter Eggs You May Have Missed In American TV Shows

5 Apr 2019 by Jasmine Ong

From music show performances to variety programme appearances, K-pop idols are no stranger to going on Korean television as part of their promotional activities. But did you know that they’ve also been making their rounds on the Western media? Since the Hallyu wave’s international reach, the world of Korean pop has been steadily turning into a global domination – and American TV has been quick to embrace the phenomenon by including K-pop references in their series. Here are eight great scene-stealers that you might want to catch up on.

#1 Family Guy

Who would have thought that K-pop would make an appearance in an animation? Created by Seth MacFarlane, the Emmy-nominated Family Guy did a special Korean-themed episode in their 14th season named ‘Candy, Quahog Marshmallow’, where Peter Griffin (Seth MacFarlane) discovers that one of his best friends Quagmire, had actually been a Korean soap star. This leads them to South Korea, where they encounter their first K-pop experience through the viewing of a real-life version of SISTAR’s music video for ‘Touch My Body’.

#2 Glee

Probably one of the hottest shows before the series finale in 2015, Glee is known for pushing boundaries with its storyline and reintroducing the modern generation to an incredible discography that includes music from all kinds of genres. Being a champion of diversity, it’s no surprise when K-influences are included in the mix. In a scene from the eighth episode off their fourth season, Mike Chang (Harry Shum Jr), who is a member of the New Directions, can be seen teaching his fellow choir mates the basics of dance with a little help from BIGBANG and their hit song, ‘Fantastic Baby’.

#3 Lucifer

As the title would suggest, this series is about the devil himself – Lucifer Morningstar (Tom Ellis) – who is a nightclub owner and doubles up as a detective consultant for the LAPD. Their surprising K-pop connection came in the 13th episode of the third season when Lucifer had a very meta moment with SHINee’s ‘Lucifer’ that was used during a fight scene. It should also be noted that this isn’t the first time the team behind Lucifer has used Korean pop songs in their series as CL and BIGBANG’s T.O.P have both been featured before!

#4 NCIS New Orleans

While most people would argue that the demographic for NCIS New Orleans might be slightly older, it seems like the writers of the series has just proven us wrong with their very up-to-date K-pop references. The eighth episode of their current season saw Hannah Khoury (Necar Zadegan), a K-pop savvy NCIS agent, using her knowledge on NCT Dream to break the ice with a high-schooler she’s trying to interview. Despite her seemingly wrong pronunciation of the members’ names and a far-fetched scenario of hanging out with the boys in Busan, we still give the show an A+ for effort.

#5 Selfie

In one of the wittiest ways of K-pop portrayal in mainstream American television, the short-lived sitcom Selfie gives a somewhat honest representation of how non-Koreans often assume a Korean reacts in real life. In the fourth episode, we see one of the young characters who’s a budding DJ get asked to cut short his play time for bed. But instead of packing it up, he dedicates a song – which happens to be the catchy K-pop banger ‘Bar Bar Bar’ by Crayon Pop – to his Korean-American guardian Henry Higgs (John Cho). Despite his sarcastic retort to address the suggested stereotype, it’s hilarious how he couldn’t resist bopping along to the addictive beat.

#6 Silicon Valley

Understanding just how big of a draw BTS is in America, cable network HBO decided to use the septet’s widely popular track ‘MIC Drop’ as the official trailer song for the promotion of the fifth season of Silicon Valley. While the boys aren’t exactly audible enough to be instantly recognised, ARMYs around the world are quick to spot the familiar beats as well as the iconic lyrics of “Haters gon’ hate, players gon’ play” at the end of the trailer.

#7 The Bold Type

Inspired by life in fashion publishing, The Bold Type follows three girls on their path to finding their own voices in a sea of intimidating leaders. As it’s a series about women, it’s only natural to include a significant female K-pop group as the accompanying music for their debut episode. BLACKPINK’s ‘Whistle’ is used in a scene that features one of the three main characters as she gets ready for a date. Unlike other shows where the music gets turned down to accommodate the character’s dialogue, you can actually hear the girls’ pristine vocals loud and clear without any interruptions!

#8 The Magicians

Described as a grown-up version of Harry Potter, this fantasy series follows a group of pop culture-savvy millennials with the gift of magic as they encounter insane surprises that challenge them at every turn. Similar to the premise of the series, The Magicians surprises with their usage of 2NE1’s ‘I Am The Best’ in a scene off the seventh episode of season two, where one of the magicians Eliot Waugh (Hale Appleman) has engaged his magical object to induce his intended targets in a dance trance.

Are there any other K-pop easter eggs we missed out in American TV shows? Let us know in the comments below!

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