I sooooo missed spazzing and posting in soompi! I’ve been too busy lately that I did not get to awesome every posts and join you guys in spazzing. Anyway, I know this has long been overdue and it still is not complete, but more or less here it is (I’ll just edit it when I get the other pics and vid)! My fanaccount of last April 20 and April 23 encounters with Cutie Joo Won! ^^ The pics that I got are considerably lesser in quality and quantity of what you’ve guys already seen. I hope you’d enjoy reading this!
*note: n❣x is also me! just in case you see that watermark in the pictures below. hahaha! Also, this is VERY long with just a FEW pictures. So, don’t say you haven’t been warned!
Now, time for some Springtime fangirling! ^^ This will be a two part entry – Ghost the Musical fanaccount and (SECRET FOR NOW)! ^^
Last year, I had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet (and speak with, and shake hands, and take a picture, and stare, and drool while I stare at, and stare some more at) our Cutie, Joo Won while they were rehearsing for Ghost – The Musical in one of their events. This year, I decided to go back to Korea and make another opportunity to see Joo Won for the second (and third) time. But little did I know that I was in for a much BIGGER event!
* For those who only want to read solely about Joo Won, I changed the font color to VIOLET so you could just skip the other parts!
PART I: GHOST – Joo Won is aweSAM
When I saw the rehearsals, I had wanted to come back and see for myself how the effects come to life, and how Joo Won further transforms into Sam Wheat. Then when I saw those videos and gif from the Thailand Fan Meet with Joo Won singing “Unchained Melody” with those smexy voice and moves with the guitar,
I said to myself that I had to see that in person. So I decided, to book a trip to Korea and watch the musical and to tag along with fellow cutie @coolreborn , and coincidentally @nunaynunay!
Through some newfound friends, we learned that Joo Won usually arrives 3 hours before show time. Last April 20, he had a 2:30PM show, so we had to be at D-Cube at 11am to see him arrive. We rushed our initial destination to reach D-Cube in time for Joo Won’s arrival. It was surreal to actually be in the D-Cube Arts Center, where Cutie comes and goes to perform Ghost – The Musical, after just seeing it in photos and reading it from @farbarri ‘s fanaccounts. I’m sure you’ve seen them but let me put more pictures out there for you guys.
Our rice wreaths,
to my surprise, are still displayed and that made me so happy and proud. That meant so much to me as a member of Joo Won Cutie International Fans, seeing as we conquered language, geographical and time zone barriers in order to make that happen *tear*. But the BIGGER surprise that I was talking about came after we reached D-Cube. It was a very pleasant and wonderful coincidence to meet fellow cuties @sweetdreams_87, @maymay, @farbarri megan, and @mei8805 on the very same day and on the very same time! We had not planned it, had not talked about it, had not even mentioned it with one another or at the site (for me, because I was still unsure if I could go until about less than a week before the actual trip, and because of the dreaded RL monster) but because of our mutual love for Joo Won, we saw ourselves meeting each other and instantly bonding, seeming like long lost friends/sisters!
We also met and befriended Korean fans and Thai fans while waiting for Joo Won to arrive. And even if we have trouble talking due to our limited Korean, and their limited English, somehow we were able to communicate and understand and enjoy each other’s’ company as we share our admiration for Joo Won. Now, I don’t only get to remember them by their usernames and awesome posts, but by their faces and actual names and the memories that we have made in the short amount of time that we met. I guess I have Joo Won to thank for meeting you wonderful people! I hope in the future, there will be another opportunity for all of us here at soompi to meet each other in person! ^^
We were so happy talking with each other and introducing ourselves and hugging each other that we had not realized that Joo Won has already arrived and went upstairs.
We had not realized that it’s already past 11am and that Joo Won still has not arrived. It was very out of character for him to come “late” (by his standards, but it is still early for a 2:30PM show) and even the Korean fans were puzzled on why he still has not arrived. They say he does not have a schedule in the morning and traffic’s not that heavy for him to be late. I’d like to think that he was busy preparing himself to meet us that he lost track of time and thus he was late. Kekekeke!
So we talked some more and were anxiously waiting whether he would be wearing cap or a mask and we all hoped he won’t wear anything. Uh, that didn’t sound right. Forgive me, as the moatiness in me was getting stronger as Cutie was approaching (and surprisingly loses them all in his presence ) Let me rephrase that, we hoped that he won’t be wearing a mask to hide his cute dimples and warm smile, or a cap to hide his let-me-run-my-fingers-through-your-hair. And after waiting some more, we finally saw some movements from the Korean fans (with those BIG and professional looking cameras), who we have to thank for giving us wonderful, HD photos of our Cutie in his every performance. They got up and were busy clicking away that we all went near the entrance and finally saw him!
I tell you guys, the wait was definitely worth it! He was not wearing a mask or a cap as you guys have already seen! Just his favorite sunglasses and his radiant smile and wonderful body personality. He was wearing a blue sweater and looked so manly and huggable in it! He was sooooooooo gorgeous! He had a much fairer skin now than the first time I saw him! He looked well rested and a bit leaner than before.
There were quite a number of fans waiting and most of us have gifts prepared to give to him and even to angel manager-nim. They both accepted all of them with grateful smiles and without fuss. I was able to hand the gift bag containing Philippine food/snacks prepared by @coolreborn et al. personally to Joo Won and placed it on his right hand, thanks to the strategic location of Joo Won’s Korean fans as they hand him their prepared gifts.
Everything went by so fast that I only managed to take these shots of Joo Won:
You guys have to wait for @coolreborn eonni’s shots for the 2 days that we’ve seen him because there were wonderful shots that she took!
So after seeing Cutie, we of course had to spazz! And spazz we did! We also took a lot of pictures but I’m not going to bore you guys with our selcas and groupies. haha!
Since we all had other plans, @coolreborn and @mei8805 would watch the 2:30pm show while the rest of us who will watch the 8:00pm show would either be going somewhere else or meeting up other friends or just be hanging out at D-Cube, we sadly went to our planned itineraries and promised to meet up later to take some more pictures together.
We also did some shopping of Ghost The Musical stuff and I got these:
Ghost – The Musical Blanket and Photo Book! Sadly, there are no Korean version of the Ghost Musical soundtrack.
As for the actual musical, I am not the best person to give everyone here details and critique it. I have no background whatsoever in music and am definitely not a fan of musicals. I only watched this because Joo Won’s in it. Kekekeke. But what I can give you though is a comparison to last year’s rehearsal and some other stuff. [SORRY, No pictures. It was forbidden. T_T] For the April 20 show, the cast were as follows:
And here are some comparisons from last year’s rehearsal event:
* A manlier Joo Won as Sam! On stage, he has embodied the character Sam Wheat fully well and was even manlier now than last year’s rehearsal.
* Last year, Joo Won performed the Elevator/Office scene with Carl (Chang Hee) and the Date scene with Molly (Ivy). On this day, I got to see the same Carl, and a different Molly (Ji Yeon). The Elevator/Office scene’s more or less the same, except for the part that the quiet/suppressed laugh and slow walk at the end of their elevator prank was replaced with a laugh out loud moment and half-run while exiting the elevator. The Date Scene was with more emotions for me than the one during the rehearsal.
* Of course, with the props, backdrops, accompaniment and effects, the musical became way cooler! So awesome effects and stage setting!
* Vocally, I think he sounded way better now! I guess it’s because he has rested well enough, that he has lesser schedule and that he has adequately prepared for it and has been at it for months.
* I think somehow, despite him thoroughly thinking about his character and preparing on how to act it out, he is the formulaic type – in the sense that when he already has this idea of how to do it, he seldom deviates from it, unless of course some unexpected things happen. Most of his actions then (even the little ones) were the same as now. I guess that’s why we cannot see any traces of Ma Jun in Tae Hee and Tae Hee in Kang To and Kang To in Si On. He gives these characters a set of actions, gestures and tics and embodies it while in said character.
On to other stuff:
* OH those biceps! Joo Won was definitely working out! As I said in my previous post, he got leaner but got more formed muscles! But it’s not like others who get really muscular. I just like this state he’s in right now. Definitely more formed than this initial shoots of Cutie as Sam:
(credits to uploader)
and not as bulky as this manip of Cutie:
(credits to the creator/uploader)
If I could just show you guys… But just take my word on it that it’s just right for me for him. oh and raisins! Right eonni @coolreborn ?
* I wish we could have all those Sam-Molly pictures in the collage that they show as transition to the next scene where the house is already complete. The pictures were very cute and lovely! I wanted to be able to take a look at each one of them for 5 seconds each. Kekekeke!
* The GUITAR song and dance is sooooo hilarious and sexy and awesome!!!! Joo Won as Sam was soooooo adorable! He’s like this little kid Sam trying to make Molly laugh! That hip swirling! Eeeeeeeeeeeee!! I could spazz this entire post! Hahahaha! Let me just say that you have to see it for yourself to understand my reactions! I also learned from @farbarri that Joo Won added that sexy dance (the one where he did the standing body wave. OMG! *nosebleeds*} and you can hear girls gasping and inhaling. Hahaha! Nope. That’s not me. I swear. Really! Okay fine. Maybe I did. Hahahaha!
* SEE THIS PICTURE:
Now, imagine Cutie in that position and outfit. Who wouldn’t lose her panties blood focus!
And OMG! We got to see for ourselves Cutie’s bare sexy back and his abs!!!! Cutie’s got some abs!!! Not like the chocolate abs of other artists but it’s still drool worthy for me! We were on the third row, center area, and though my eyesight’s not too well, I could definitely see some abs on our Cutie even if he was just on his side! *drooling yet again*
FUNNY STORY: So we know that the SOFA scene comes after the GUITAR scene (sorry, don’t know the act/scene names. Hahahaha! But I know you get what I mean. Heh. ), so when Joo Won-Sam placed the guitar down, for some reason, both me and @coolreborn eonni leaned forward at the same time! HAHAHAHAHA! Moaty instincts?
* That sexy time scene with Molly (Ji Yeon) was perfectly done, from the lighting and backdrop change and the exit. See April 23 for my take on Molly (Ivy) one.
END OF MOATY ALERT
* There a few very short moments where I see Joo Won instead of Sam and I guess those are the parts that he sort of adlibs. The most striking one was when he was I think reacting to Molly’s project. When he said “wow!~” in this cutesy manly voice and raised both of his arms and wiggled them, kind of what he does in 1N2D. (I’ll try to find a clip of it) It gave me a different feel from when he said “YES!” in this manly voice and pose when Carl brought food to their home in the first few scenes.
* Seriously, Joo Won looks sooooo good in suits! He was wearing a gray one with a violet tie! He looks so handsome. Not the Lee Kang To in suit vibes but this manly Sam vibe!
* Joo Won gives his all each time. He actually runs when he’s supposed to and not acts as if he’s running. He trembles, he cries, he shakes! Just awesome! He acts with every part of his body! When he was being ghost-“punched” by the Train Ghost, it actually seemed like he was being ghost-punched! I guess all those trainings for his roles in Gaksital and Ojakgyo Brothers helped him in giving a natural fighting scene.
* As I said before, this April 20 performance, I saw so much emotion come out of him. He cried his heart out. I even saw teardrops dropping from his eyes twice and hitting the stage floor, aside from those falling down his cheeks. He actually cried, complete with tears flowing continuously from his eyes and nose. It was very heartbreaking. You would want to get up and hug him just to comfort him. And of course, we were crying with him too, even if we don’t understand much of the conversation.
* I first thought that they’ll use a hologram of Joo Won as Sam trying to pass through walls/doors or pass through people (as in the pictures circulated). But it was just him and his acting and a bit of special “effects”/stage set up that made it seem like he was passing through walls and people. Awesome!
* That scene were Joo Won said that it was as if he was supposed to sing his all and feel like he’s about to die from singing- really awesome! It might not be perfect vocally but emotionally it was spot on! Goosebumps!!!
* I love the interaction between Sam and Oda Mae! Soooo funny! The Oda Mae in this performance is already funny to begin with that it does not take too much to make the audience laugh. Her assistant though (Carla eonni) was funnier in her expressions and such a scene stealer! And she’s actually an Oda Mae alternate if in case both Oda Mae’s cannot make it. I can see her playing as Oda Mae really well. I actually cannot remember any very significant interaction between this Oda Mae and Sam. But the Oda Mae in the April 23 performance, that I’ve got lots to share!
These are just some of the things that struck me in this April 20 performance. I may have missed some more but luckily there are a lot more people who could share! Calling @coolreborn , @nunaynunay , @mei8805 , @maymay and @farbarri ! Share more pictures and insights! Kekekeke!
Curtain call came and of course they got standing ovations! Also, I was torn on whether to clap with all my might for Joo Won’s amazing performance, or take some photos as remembrance of this awesome musical. So, I did both and got these amazing shots:
haha! got you! All I got were these shots. T_T mostly of the lights. hahahahaha!
Here are some more shots:
Compared to other curtain calls, Joo Won was solemn in this one. He was not doing his famous double hand wave and body wiggle. Just clapping with this sad face, which I guess could be due to the Sewol tragedy. It was as if it was that performance was his tribute to them and the family of the deceased. That was perhaps why it was so full of emotions.
So after the show, we immediately went to the 7th floor to wait for Joo Won. And there was a huge crowd already waiting for him – to shake his hands, to give gifts, to cheer him on, to congratulate him and to just see him. I forgot to tell you guys that we have met with another Joo Won fan from Hong Kong who came to Korea to watch him perform. There were also other fans from other countries (saw I think some Caucasians and Japanese and others) and I guess that April 20 show had the most number of International Fans who came to watch? Hahaha! So far there were us Filipinos, Australian @sweetdreams_87, Malaysian @farbarri, Indonesian @maymay and @mei8805, Singaporean Megan, Chinese Margaret and other Japanese fans. Or I was just imagining things. I noticed the crowd, while they react to the show, does not laugh as much as the crowd in the April 23 show. Perhaps because we do not fully understand the dialogue, especially those of us with limited knowledge of Korean? That’s why I thought that the audience was mostly composed of international fans. But anyway, I guess it’s one of the largest crowd who waited for him and that is why Angel Manager-nim took a shot of us! Hahahaha! I hope we could see that picture posted somewhere. You might see me with my jaw hanging open while looking at Cutie. Kekekekeke! And Joo Won looked soooo amused with what Angel Manager-nim did!
And @farbarri this is for you:
Joo Won wore a different outfit after the performance, and even wore a cap. I’m just glad we got to meet him earlier without the cap on, but was still happy that he was not wearing a mask. Also, I wanted to give him the gift I prepared and was thinking of how to get pictures and give him the gift. Unfortunately I got squished by the crowd and was unable to give him. Luckily, there’s still another opportunity to give it!
After Joo Won left, we tried waiting for other casts but turns out they’ve already left using the back elevator or we just did not notice. Too bad because we wanted to tell them that they were awesome – from the main casts down to the dancers!
So that was the end of our April 20th experience! Let’s go on our April 23rd show!
With the tip that he arrives 3 hours before the start of the show, we came to D Cube at around 5pm for the 8pm show. There were very few fans waiting. Just us Soompi girls and 2 or 3 others, plus a whole lot of couples and guys lining up at the ticket booth, who were probably not waiting for Cutie. We waited but then saw Angel Manager-nim going down the Escalator from the 8th Floor. At first, it was hard to recognize him because he was slimmer now. Then it dawned on us that he came waaaaaay earlier and we missed him. T_T
NOT KIDDING. T_T
We should have known as the girls with the big lenses and professional looking cameras were not there anymore, that he has already arrived. So @farbarri asked Angel Manager-nim if Joo Won’s already here and when he said yes, our hearts broke. T_T We missed him. T_______________________T Anyway, we’ll get to see him perform and then see him after the performance anyway. So, I decided to hand over to Angel Manager-nim the gift that I prepared for Cutie, in the hopes that he could give it to him later when he goes back up. We were secretly hoping that he was about to fetch Cutie from downstairs. Anyway, he came back up, still holding the gifts that we prepared and he was talking on the phone that we weren’t able to ask for his picture. Kekekeke. He’s already a celebrity too in JooWonverse!
To pass the time, we again took more crazy shots of the posters on the 9th and 10th floor:
Now on to the performance:
The cast for April 23:
* Vocally and musicality wise, I guess this is better. But I liked the harmony of Joo Won-Ji Yeon better. And it felt more natural. Somehow, you know that Ivy was just acting, especially during the first few scenes, unlike Ji Yeon’s where it was as if the audience was watching a slice of their life. But Ivy’s voice though was just amazing! Ji Yeon’s really awesome too and sounded more realistic and thus the feels is just a whole lot better for me.
* I liked the Carl in the April 20 performance better, although this Carl adlibs a lot more. For the OFFICE/ELEVATOR SCENE, he said “Good Morning Boss!” in English, forcing our Cutie to respond in “oh Hello.” I don’t know if it was just that day or if it was always that way with Cutie and him in the other performance.
* The lighting and props were not as spot on as the April 20 performance. First off, in the SOFA scene, the lighting I think got delayed that we see Joo Won- Sam and Ivy-Molly just frozen in their position, before the lights dim and they were taken off stage. In the scene where the Train Ghost was training Cutie Sam to move objects, some of the props fell from their original places. I was wondering how Joo Won would react to it. The newspaper and boxes were on top of chairs and they were supposed to fly up when Sam finally gets to learn how to move objects. But on this day, the train ghost accidentally knocked them down (seeing as they have light weight) when he was jumping from one area to another. I was waiting for Joo Won to do some adlibs on this, but he just did what he was supposed to do, and therefore the effect seems delayed. I also don’t know if it’s because I’ve already seen it once that I get more observant of the “magic” behind the scenes, or there was really a delay in the dimming of lights. But somehow I figured out how the scene where Sam got shot and died, and his ghost ran to take on the killer, while his body remained on the ground, happened.
* The Oda Mae on this day had such powerful vocals but is not as funny to begin with like the previous Oda Mae. But she was giving it her all and made us laugh so much with her crazy antics that gets crazier by the minute. And her adlibs! Her adlibs were toooooo funny! And what’s best is how Joo Won as Sam reacts to it. I liked the one where Joo Won Sam was singing “1 little 2 little 3 little Indians” and towards the transition to the next scene and the fading out of Joo Won singing it, Oda Mae joined him and you could hear the laughs of everybody and I guess even them backstage! The BANK scene is where they just, and we, lost it. We were laughing our heads off! They were trying so hard to suppress their laughter and/or was really laughing! Oda Mae’s seriously cracking us up, and putting Cutie on the spot that he even said “mworago?” (What did you say?) in response to her adlibs (he was supposed to be in a bit of a serious moment, while Oda Mae’s just being her funny self) and proceeded to the next line. And that “YEOJAAAAAAAA!!!” with mouth hanging open is just funnier now! Cutie also was randomly touching Oda Mae’s hair accessory during this particular scene which he did not do in the last show that we watched.
* As for Cutie, another strong performance! He was not as emotional as last time but nevertheless, he gets the emotion across and made me teary eyed. I’m guessing that his vocals were more spot on this performance. But again, not an expert! Hahaha!
* As for the SOFA scene, it was sooooo funny how Joo Won “lost” his abs in a span of 3 days. Hahaha. By losing I meant that he seemed to have just eaten prior to the show. Kekekeke! Yes the abs was there but he seemed full. Hahahahaha! The Soompi ladies I think could attest to that. Kekeke! It was soooo cute!
As our ritual, we went down immediately and waited for Cutie. We learned that he wore a red shirt when he came to D Cube earlier in the afternoon and I was hoping to see him in the same outfit as he go home. I was wearing red so I was feeling all match-y with him. HAHAHAHAHA! Anyway, lo and behold! He was wearing the same outfit! And he just looks good in any color, I swear! The shirt seemed a few sizes too big on him but he just looks gorgeous. It’s weird how he looks so buff in a sweater and so slender in a shirt. Anyway, such a large crowd too, but not larger than that of April 20th . He was going down the escalator with his head down and straightened his back ¾ of the way and kept on bowing to everyone while it went down. He shook fans’ hands and received the gifts and exited. Instead of exiting through the cinema, they went straight to the elevator instead on and Joo Won did his double handed wave, he said something but I can’t understand so T_T. And though I was unable to shake his hands this time around, I was just able to give him a pat on his back for such an amazing performance and a “Great Job Joo Won!”
[I’m having trouble uploading the VIDEO so I’ll just post screencaps instead for now]
Oh and I forgot to tell you how we had our pictures taken with manager-nim. During the half-time intermission, we went to the bathroom and as we were coming back up, saw President-nim and Manager-nim together. Luckily, @coolreborn brought her gift to Manager-nim wishing to accidentally meet him and have this opportunity to thank him for taking care of Cutie. So he was surprised to learn that the gift was for him and that we wanted a picture with him! Kekekeke! @farbarri , I think you might have a rival with Angel manager-nim already. No. That won’t be me. ^_~
[PICTURE WITH ANGEL MANAGER TO BE ADDED SOON]
I guess I can understand why Mr. Rubin has said that Joo Won’s portrayal of Sam is the best thus far. It’s because Joo Won does not act Sam but becomes Sam on stage. It was a pleasure watching you Joo Won.
Thank you for the amazing performance!
Thank you for sharing to us your awesome talents!
Thank you for staying as this humble and good natured person that you are all this time!
Thank you for being the reason for us to meet wonderful people who love and adore you too, and call them as our friends!
Joo Won you are indeed aweSAM!~