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KCON 2019 Japan Proves TWICE and IZ*ONE's Power In The Country

By Lai Frances | May 22, 2019 08:31 AM EDT

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Over the course of the years, the KpopStarz team always focused coverage on KCON USA in both New York and Los Angeles. Now, we went overseas to check out how big Hallyu's influence is in the Land of the Rising Sun.

On May 19, KCON 2019 Japan held the last day (of three) at Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan. With a three-hour M! Countdown concert on the go, the ten artists on the lineup were undoubtedly some of K-pop's on the rise and finest acts today; D-Crush, fromis_9, GWSN, IZ*ONE, Nature, ONEUS, Pentagon, SF9, TWICE and VAV.

The format of KCON Japan's M! Countdown concert is no different to KCON USA's; 2-3 songs per artists with little games in between and some special stages thrown in as well.  

However, what may be considered an eye-opener was witnessing how powerful groups IZ*ONE and TWICE were to the Japanese audience. We may have heard or read about their popularity online, but it's different (and better) in person. A sea of their respective lightsticks lit up throughout Makuhari Messe's event hall, in addition to synchronized fan chants.

IZ*ONE, who made their debut last fall, performed on the first and last day of KCON 2019 in Japan proving their popularity in demand. Having hits like "Violeta and "La Vie En Rose" alongside some of their own J-pop hits, the group's cross-promotional activities only amplified the group's presence and brought them to where they are today.

On the other hand, TWICE, who has successfully topped Japan's Oricon chart and various charts in South Korea, certified their name as Asia's No. 1 Girl Group as the night's headliner the "All things Hallyu" event. Prior to taking the stage, rookie acts Nature, GWSN and, fromis_9, paid tribute to the nonagon with a medley of songs that "Cheer Up", "Knock Knock" and "Likey."
Nonetheless, the evening celebrated the influence of K-pop and its globalization.  

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