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Expo's K-pop concert makes social media waves

Expo 2020 Dubai recently generated massive volumes of social media conversation in response to the Korea National Day K-pop concert held on Sunday, 16 January 2022. According to DataEQ, the concert garnered close to 300 000 social media mentions, with 200 000 of these mentions occurring over the span of just one day.

The K-pop concert line-up, which could be watched virtually or live as an Expo 2020 visitor, included performances by Stray Kids, Psy, Sunmi, Golden Child, (G)I-dle and Forestella. It was the first time that many of these artists had performed in the UAE, and the excitement both online and off was palpable.

This, however, isn’t the first time that K-pop has made waves on social media for Expo 2020 Dubai. Social conversation volumes first began picking up as far back as June 2021, when South Korea appointed the popular K-pop band Stray Kids as the Ambassadors of the country’s pavilion. A social media sensation, Stray Kids performed for the President of South Korea and the first lady at Al Wasl Dome, before touring the pavilions and later performing in front of thousands of people.

“We were looking so forward to this moment, ever since we were elected as ambassadors for the Korea pavilion,” Stray Kids band member, Felix, said on stage.

With over 200 participants – including nations, multilateral organisations, businesses and educational institutions – Expo 2020 will run until 31 March 2022, having kicked off on 1 October 2021. It remains open seven days a week, from 10:00 to 00:00 on Saturday to Wednesday, and 10:00 to 02:00 on Thursday and Friday.