A sea of passionate ONCEs poured into Chicago’s United Center. TWICE, who recently set off on the American leg of their READY TO BE tour, mere paces away, ready to ignite the stage for an unforgettable night. Short advertisements for JYP entertainment appear on the screen, creating more anticipation from the crowd of devoted fans. With each passing moment, the ONCEs get louder; the sea of light sticks illuminates the building with bright colors, and within a few seconds, darkness envelopes the venue, and the show commences.
Amid the colossal screens, the intro VCR displays visuals of the members, increasing the crowd’s anticipation to see the ladies face to face. Standing tall behind a descending platform are the nine women that brought together an audience from all walks of life- TWICE. Immediately the ladies begin an intense performance of the English version of their latest release, “Set Me Free.” The stage came to life within seconds, with pyrotechnics, live vocals, beautiful outfits, and synchronization. In a swift turn, the group transitions into another fan favorite, “I Can’t Stop Me,” upholding the same amount of energy as the previous performance.
After two passionate performances, TWICE takes a break to introduce themselves to their devoted fans. Each member expressed their excitement to be in Chicago, especially Dahyun, who recounted her experience with the iconic Chicago-style pizza. Once they reintroduced themselves, four songs followed. “Go Hard,” allowed TWICE to unleash their mature side as the stage lights took a break casting the groups’ silhouettes in a sensual dance routine.
As the group wraps up “Go Hard,” they’ve already prepared for the next song, “More & More.” Three detachable triangle structures held three members each, as their backup dancers drove them around the stage until the build-up to the iconic “More & More” dance break.TWICE gracefully sashayed onto the extended stage, coming face-to-face with their dedicated fans who stood eagerly at the barricade before them. The women proceeded with their act of “More & More” and then smoothly switched to their latest English track “MOONLIGHT SUNRISE.” The audience erupted into song, singing along to every word that TWICE sang. The group was so surprised by the singing that after their electric performance of “BRAVE,” they asked the crowd to collectively belt out the entire first verse of “MOONLIGHT SUNRISE” with such volume that it could reach the members waiting backstage
Solo Stages Part 1
Members Nayeon, Jihyo, Jeongyeon, and Chaeyoung entertained the crowd while Dahyun, Tzuyu, Sana, Momo, and Mina prepared for their solo stages. Dahyun returned to the stage draped in all-white attire, accompanied by a white piano which she played for her angelic cover of “Try” by Colbie Caillat. The floor beneath her became veiled in a mist of smoke from a smoke machine while a spotlight above her shined on her talent, captivating the audience’s attention until the very last moment. Tzuyu followed Dahyun with a stunning performance of Charlie Puth’s “Done For Me.” She confidently positioned herself atop one of the numerous elevated platforms on stage as she commenced her performance.
Sana gave an enticing performance of “New Rules” by Dua Lipa after Tzuyu. She played with the camera, starting her choreography on the floor covered by backup dancers until she bloomed like a flower in a garden. Sana passed the baton to Momo, who owned the stage with her choreography to Beyonce’s “Move.” Momo originally donned a spacious Jersey but later shed it to reveal a dazzling two-piece outfit. She confidently strutted to a tall pole and displayed her remarkable pole dancing abilities, exemplifying why she is the main dancer of TWICE. To wrap up the first set of solo stages, Mina embraces her inner Ariana Grande with a confident and sassy performance of “7 Rings.” Mina expressed that her choice of hairstyle for the day, a high ponytail, was a nod toward Ariana Grande’s signature look. Her ponytail swayed vivaciously as she danced and twerked beneath the cascading Mina dollars, giving us an epic finale to the first half of the show.
The nine women then reunited on the stage after an electrifying interlude from a live band. The band began to play a beautiful rendition of “Feel Special” which led to the group’s performance of the song. TWICE knows their audience well because the choice of songs was impeccable; “Cry For Me,” “FANCY,” and “The Feels” all followed “Feel Special.” This well-curated sequence shows not only the diversity of their discography, but the quality of their music and performances.
Solo Stage Part 2
We’ve made it to the second chapter of the solo stages, starting with Chaeyoung’s self-written song, “My Guitar.” She soothed the audience’s hearts with a song personal to her. Chaeyoung shared that her inspiration for writing “My Guitar” stemmed from the profound love she developed for the instrument when she first started playing it. Jihyo mesmerized the audience with her original song called “Nightmare,” which is set to be on her solo album, releasing in August. The ambiance created by the red lights and smoke-covered floor exuded a haunting and nightmarish atmosphere. However, Jihyo juxtaposed the atmosphere with her dream-like vocals.
Jeongyeon summoned her inner Lizzo with a fun performance of “Juice.” Covered in a sheer, fur-lined robe, her sassiness shined through with this song. She even has her own flute (recorder) solo, which captured the dynamic and energetic essence of the song. Nayeon closed out the solo stages with her huge hit, “POP.” She paid homage to the first-generation idol, Lee Hyori with a stylish outfit featuring a flat cap. The stage came alive with 5-6 explosive bursts of confetti cannons, creating an exhilarating atmosphere. These solo stages were an amazing touch to the show, allowing each member to shine in their own way.
Once again, the group reunites on the stage to perform their fun pop-rock track “Queen Of Hearts.” The group turns to the audience giving directions on how to sing their next song “YES OR YES,” this began the medley of their greatest hits: “What Is Love,” ” Cheer Up,” “Likey,” “KNOCK KNOCK,” “SCIENTIST,” and “Heart Shaker.” It was evident that TWICE not only entertained the audience but also thoroughly enjoyed themselves on stage. From the member trying their hand at the “Shy, Shy, Shy” line from “Cheer Up,” to Mina stealing the show with her impressive splits during the “LIKEY” dance break, this segment of the show was one to be remembered.
As we inch towards the end of the show, TWICE pulls out the rest of their hit songs like “Alcohol-Free,” “Dance The Night Away,” and “Talk That Talk” before giving a bow and returning back stage. While ONCEs waited for the ladies to return, it was time to dance! Fans got their moments of fame as the camera went around the venue and chose different fans to show their moves to various TWICE songs. Some people took it as an opportunity to show their knowledge of the choreography and some just took it as a chance to have the most fun possible. The venue erupted in cheers as each fan popped up on the screen, giving a sense of community to all ten thousand people in the building.
The group then changes into their comfortable outfits for the final segment of the show. Things started to wind down with two slow-tempo tracks: ” When We Were Kids” and “CRAZY STUPID LOVE.” Heartwarming baby pictures of each member illuminated the large screens, creating a nostalgic and sentimental environment during their performance of “When We Were Kids.” “CRAZY STUPID LOVE” wrapped up the show on a calming note before the encore performances.
Bring in the wheel that decides the fate of the last two songs! A wheel with the names of songs is wheeled onto the stage, and the crowd goes crazy. As fate would have it, Momo spun the wheel and landed on “Rollin,” causing an eruption of excitement and cheers from the audience. The group walked around the stage, taking gifts from fans, such as hats and even Jihyo Money! A large dollar accompanied by smaller dollars, all with Jihyo’s face front and center. One last song lies for Chicago Day 1 concert. This time Jeongyeon spins the wheel, and fate decides that the final song will be “Got The Thrills,” but the crowd decided otherwise. The crowd screamed for “Candy Pop” until TWICE gave in and performed their crowd’s most anticipated song.
TWICE gave ONCEs a night to remember. Their energy never wavered, and they remained focused on one goal: give the crowd the performance they paid for. From the first song to the last, TWICE gave their fans another reason as to why they love them so much. The hard work and determination paid off as all the ONCEs left United Center satisfied. We would like to thank Live Nation and TWICE for allowing us to immerse ourselves in a night filled with unforgettable moments and boundless fun.