May 18, 2013

Seoul M&G Pictures

Please do not edit or crop the pictures.
Please credit SurySury and her blog "Mienai Tsubasa" if/when you re-post.


Ciaran's got an adorable smile! :D 
Sury was standing right near Ciaran so naturally she took more pictures of him.
I don't blame her... he's so photogenic! 



 Cassius is always engaged and enthusiastic :) 


Can't believe Luke is one of the biggest boys now... already!


Happy belated birthday Henry! 
Can't believe he's already 14. Aw... 


What a nice young man Carlos has become :)
My best friend came to the Seoul concert without knowing much about Libera's music. 
Later that day, she messaged me a picture of Carlos and told me this boy was her favorite!


If a 10 year old can be a perfectionist, that would be Ben.
He got those Korean words down really well. I was so proud of him! :)
As we can draw from this radio interview, he's a humble human being too.


Ah, bless Sury and her beautiful digital SLR camera for these. It's been a month since I saw them and it seems that anything Enyu and I ever talk about is how much we miss our darling boys and it's kind of killing us softly. Aw...take me back to April please? 

April 17, 2013

St. John's and Sejong Concert Review

Hello! I'm back to Texas where got at least 10 degrees  hotter since I left and practically progressing into summer. What happened to Spring? Did I miss it while I was in my home country? Anyway I had the most special time in Korea with friends and family and Libera that makes my vacation look like an event from a parallel universe.

I must apologize that I don't have an excellent memory like some of the other fans. Most of it is still a big soft blur to me! Sorry. So I'm gonna take a liberty to mix up both concert nights, mostly concentrating on Sejong one simply because it's more recent. Hopefully you don't mind me skipping who did what solo as that information is readily available on other blogs.

I was fortunate enough to secure front center seats for both concerts. $150 well spent! I say fortunate because I thought I had a lot of interaction with the boys on stage or at least they made me believe so. Unfortunately the thought of blogging simply didn't cross my brilliant mind and I spent the whole time miming the lyrics as the boys filled out the sounds for me. Yep. If you were on the stage and saw someone in the front row singing along with you and clapping like a maniac and occasionally give you thumbs up, that would be me.   

Dies Irae and Gloria
When the light went on, you could see everybody on the stage beaming with so much energy and confidence as if they were secretly communicating with you that they were ready to blow you away. And they surely did as soon as Robert raised his hand. I saw a lot of boys smiling when they got to the 'confutatis maledictis' part. I presume they had a good glance at the amazed look on the audiences? :) "Dies Irae" was such a good starting song as Ciaran's voice sprinkled magic dust to it. "Gloria" is one of my favorite concert number as I thoroughly enjoy when they turn aside. They did it so sharply (is that a word?) that I also turned my left shoulder to 45 degrees with them! Haha.

Ben and Cassius greeted everyone in Korean. I was so proud of Nano-Ben especially for memorizing all those wicked confusing and tongue-twisting Korean words. I was so proud of him that I regretted for having only two hands to clap! Also gave him two thumbs up for totally nailing the words down. I loved it and the rest of audiences certainly appreciated it as we practically cheered him after each sentence. Great job, Ben!

Song of Life
This is my favorite song of this tour as it has a rather personal story attached to it. I lost a dear friend almost exactly two years ago in April. When the short previews released in March 2011, I was instantly in love with the song. Loved Ralph's voice, loved the melody, loved the lyrics, loved everything. But by the time the full song released, my friend had departed and I just could not bring myself to listen to a song celebrating life. There's not a time I listened to this song without thinking about him. Even today. Even now.
Fast forward to April 2013, only a couple days after his 2-year anniversary, here I was, listening to the beautiful "Song of Life" and all the memories rushed in. Everything from Isaac's strong and clear voice to Josh playing the keyboard, to the piercing harmony after the first half of the song... it stripped down my emotion to the very last fiber, so thin and brittle. Actually, I'm not sure if Josh indeed played keyboards in this song or not but you get the idea. I was able to hold back my tears at St. John's as I was sitting too close from the stage and didn't want the boys to see me. I didn't do so well in Sejong and had a little break down as their singing swallowed my quiet sob. It couldn't be helped.

Voca Me and Sanctus 
I was already emotionally vulnerable from "Song of Life" and the next two hauntingly beautiful songs definitely did not help. I spent most of "Voca Me" getting myself together so don't remember much about it. Sorry. I had my smile back seeing Tom hitting some strong high notes in "Sanctus". I noticed Eoghan singing some of the solo-ish harmony part in the middle that my accursed brain cannot remember which. Matthew J's last sanctus notes sweet and solid. Just when I was wishing to hear more of his voice, the genius Robert read my mind and arranged this song to the next.

Cassius and Michael UR introduced the moose. It's so little and chubby!

I Vow To Thee My Country
Thank you God for Matthew Jansen. His voice is so rich, so comfy, so strong and steady. Just solid. He has a voice that you wanna listen over and over without realizing how time has passed. At least that's how I felt. This song ended so quickly and I was thinking myself "jeez, done already?"

Salva Me and Eternal Light
The last time I saw Libera 4 years ago, Stefan did the high Salva-s wearing his hood and rest of them didn't. This time, everyone had their hoods up! Some of the little ones in the front row event had their faces completely covered! It was such a cute sight. :) "Salva Me" is another classic Libera song that you never get tired of listening. "Eternal Light" was another lovely song that apparently I don't remember much about. I really enjoyed it, but what happened to my brain cells?

Jude got his Korean speech part down really nicely as well! Also gave him two thumbs up. He introduced the musicians which followed by abruptly loud cheers when it he introduced Josh as he waved to the crowd. The audience got so loud so suddenly that it actually cracked me up both nights. So I didn't get to cheer for my favorite ex-Libera. Aw. Robert obviously got the longest clap as he deserved. :)

How Shall I Sing That Majesty
Let me make an announcement: Eoghan is my favorite now! Sorry Josh. Sorry Matthew. Sorry Enyu (lol). You can laugh and tell me I'm delusional all you want but I had a feeling that Eoghan was making an eye contact with me. I think "How Shall I Sing That Majesty" is another song that really shines in live stages. I'm in love with it now! Everyone really belted out with all their strength towards the end of the song and made my jaw literally dropped on the floor. Just wow! I was clapping and gave two thumbs up to Eoghan before the light went off and what happened next? He made a little nod and wore that famous Eoghan smile! :D So I'm gonna tell everybody that we made an eye contact! Mwahaha.

Orinoco Flow 
After the intermission, the boys appeared on the stage as the song started to play. Again, it felt like Eoghan was looking straight at me the whole time until the choreography kicked in and he turned aside. Actually I had a feeling that he was looking at me (or my direction at least) a lot in Sejong that I was starting to wonder if I looked funny. Ok, I must be delusional. But it was still nice!

Cassius and Michael UR came out again and did the hood demonstration. Soy adorable and funny! Michael dragged Cassius by his hood to place him to the right spot for Far Away.

Far Away
Isaac is quickly becoming one of my favorite soloists. Isaac is a funny one. Unlike the other boys, he doesn't look at Robert that much for direction or whatever they were supposed to communicate with him during the songs. Isaac seems to know exactly what he is doing by heart and shows no hesitation once he opens his mouth. He has such a strong voice kept inside that little body that it's amazing to see him hitting the high notes so effortlessly. His face appears pretty calm to the point that it looks like he is spaced out a little (obviously he's not), but the innocence coming out from him just pierces right through your heart and brings tear to your eyes. I cannot wait to hear more of him in next many concerts!

The Fountain
It was a busy song for me turning my head left and right to catch Josh banging on the grand piano on the left and Matthew J singing the solo on the right. You have to hear Matthew J to fully appreciate his voice. What a strong, strong singer he is! However much I like Josh, once Matthew brought it an octave higher in the middle, he had my full undivided attention and my jaw that was hanging loose. Another song that's too short!

Grateful Heart and Ave Verum
Tom and Michael UR's duet was lovely in "Grateful Heart". Their voices have great contrast and when you put them together, it gives a nice flavor to the song. Tom held out the last note so, so, so, so long. It was amazing! Josh moved back to the piano one more time for "Ave Verum". He played it beautifully. Oh, I finally saw the famous V forming with my naked eyes! It was great!

Ciaran talked about their vocal exercises which comprised of three mini songs. They were so much fun! At Sejong, the audiences clapped for reasons unknown to me... and they were off beat and awful. I hoped they don't clap when Libera does the scale- thankfully they didn't clap for that one. Would've been awkward if they clapped softly and then really loudly!

How Can I Keep From Singing and Stay With Me
Aw. Josh used to sing solo to this and now he is on the keyboards. It was strangely comforting to see him on the stage, to know that he is still with Libera and a part of its music. Nice transition there! :) I really liked how everyone looked up as they sing the "I lift my eyes" part. Cassius had a nice solo in "Stay With Me" and I'm such a bad fan for not remembering much else. Probably because my thoughts were digressing into what happened during Stay With Me in 2009.

Glory to Thee
Eoghan's song again! Yay! (I can almost hear Enyu pouting all the way from Seoul. lol) I paid an extra attention this time. He has a lovely voice! I think "Glory to Thee" is a really difficult song because 5 groups sing different parts. I would've been so confused but these boys are way smarter than me. It was evident that Eoghan is going through a voice change. Not that it's a bad thing. It's a natural thing for boys. As a wise man once said, a voice doesn't break but it changes. I have to agree with him because you are not gonna put a stop to singing when it 'breaks', right? So it's politically correct (lol) to say a voice is changing so that you can continue with singing and learn new parts with your new voice. I'm a girl so I don't know how it feels when your voice changes significantly. I usually hate my voice when I get a bad cold because it sounds so scratchy but sometimes it's kinda fun to have a different voice because one time a really hot guy told me that I sounded like Amy Winehouse. I totally don't sound like Amy Winehouse by the way. It only happens when I get a severe cold! Anyway my point is, I hope Eoghan isn't too disappointed about his voice change. No matter where on a stage you stand, whether it be front center or back row, stage lights will always find you and make you shine! :)

Ben came out and said a farewell speech. Once again, he perfected "Thank you for coming to our concert. Goodbye" part in Korea. I was really, really proud of him. I clapped, cheered and raised my two thumbs up and sent a big smile.

Exsultate
Tom opened "Exsultate", followed by his peers. Tom is such a great singer. His voice just booms! I especially loved when he hits those crazy, crazy high notes in so many different songs. It's always hard for me to quickly spot who sings which part in a specific moment, but it's safe to guess that Tom sang those in 9 out of 10 cases. He is that good! I noticed that Eoghan singing really high notes at the end. Although I don't remember whole lot of details in 240 minutes of two concerts (which I'm certainly not proud of), I do remember this one because I was thinking myself 'holy cow what just happened here?'. Yes dears. Exactly my point. What was the point of my big pep talk just a song ago?! Ok, go take out your Peace CD and play "Exsultate". This boy Eoghan belted out the really nice backing ooh-oh-ohh-s starting from 2:42 to the highest 'hallelujah'. Get it? Isn't it amazing? By the sound of it, Eoghan doesn't have to worry about voice change for some time. I really wished I had like 6 more extra hands to clap louder.

The Moon Represents My Heart 
After a really long clap and bows and more claps, this crack song came on. Excuse my language to call it a crack song but everyone who heard it would agree with me that once you listen to it, whether you speak Chinese or clueless about the language, you are instantly hooked. I'm not kidding you, I was singing this song the whole day in my made up Chinese! So addictive! I wish the full song releases soon so everyone can have a listen. Another tear-breaking song for sure. Michael took a couple step out and sung the last verse in his baby-bird voice. It was so sweet and lovely and I'm running out of adjectives.

Danny Boy
The most amazing thing happened in Sejong. I was expecting the next encore song, "Libera" to play but the boys didn't move and there was single bright light pointing the front center of the stage. In Sejong, the stage was really big and Libera stayed behind the orchestra line which is good 10 steps behind the edge of the stage. Nobody, I mean, nobody crossed that orchestra line during the concert. Nobody but Isaac. Him alone took steps forward and left the rest of them behind in the dimmed section. As he was stepping closer to me, a million question marks popped in my head. What's happening? Then I thought 'oh my goodness, he is gonna jump off the stage. I gotta sprint and catch him if he falls!' lol. Me and my silly imaginations.
Isaac stopped and started to sing the first verses of "Danny Boy". Holy. Mother. Of. Moose. My jaw dropped right then and there and I clasped my hands tight. There was no Robert conducting, no musician playing, no audience dare to cough or whisper. The only two things alive in the massive Sejong center was the 10-year-old Isaac and the stage light softly kissing his golden hair from above. He really looked like an angel and tears rolled down my cheeks. I don't know how else to describe it. Just special and precious. I hope this pleasant surprise continues every once in a while. :')

Libera
Before the clapping died down, the organ sound played and they started "Libera". After the St. John's concert I was told that my face lit up like a firework so it must be my favorite song. I told you my favorite was "Song of Life" but I guess I really like this song too. Well obviously, you cannot have a Libera concert without singing "Libera" right?! Something I recently leanred-- Kavana sings the highest 'Libera- Libera-' part where everyone sings together! Unbelievable, isn't it? He does it so effortlessly that it's hard to notice even when you're watching him super closely! Apparently he's been singing the highest Libera chorus part for 4 years now! There's a fun Libera fact for you! Okay, I put way too many exclamation marks in that last few sentences!!

When the song ended, me and my neighbors jumped from our seats for a standing ovation. We clapped and cheered and smiled for a really long time. I want a DVD or a live CD at least. Their concerts are too precious to turn around and let go! Please? Anyway, here's some extras that I didn't think it fit anywhere above.

Anthony Blake
WATCH HIM. Seriously. Just watch him. Ever since the 12-year-old smiley and happy Josh, Anthony is the most pleasant boy to watch on stage. He actually bounces and sways a little when he sings as if he feels the music flowing in him. His beaming eyes are following Robert wherever he goes like a sunflower with the biggest smile. He is genuinely a happy child and the positive energy is directly delivered to the audiences. I loved watching him in every single song. What a blessing child!

Josh Madine
I know many of you were expecting some type of dramatic rendezvous of me meeting Josh again for the first time in 4 years but alas, no such thing happened. No. I'm not joking you, I didn't even get to say hi. But I do have a story to share. I saw him wearing a T-shirt that I gave him 4 years ago in California! How does it still fit? Didn't he grow like a foot taller since? Maybe I accidentally bought a size large. Anyway I was glad that I picked a shirt that he liked enough to pack in his suitcase to Asia...unless that was his only clean shirt left!


The boy with a bag is Josh four years ago. The bag had a T-shirt and a book (read my review here) if I remember correctly... and that's all the detail I'll be giving regarding the shirt. Please don't ask me which one it was. I'd like to keep it a little secret between me and him although I doubt he remembers it's from me but thank you Josh for modeling it out! Looked really nice! :) 

Matt Madine
I did get to talk to my little prince Matt but didn't get to share my little cheeky secret (is it?) that I'm dearmadine. Matt and I had a few scattered conversations but I bet he was totally clueless. Unnnnluckyyy! But I have to say that Matt is the sweetest child. I'm not just saying for the saying's sake of it. He really is a sweetheart and a little gentleman! I was so happy to finally meet him. :) Sorry I was being an incognito! I'll properly introduce myself next time! Promise!

Simon Lewis
Ah, now he is the only person who looked right through my cheeky incognito scheme thingy because I was wearing a Boston Bruins shirt one day. How many Libera fans in Korea would wear a Bruins gear? He didn't have to confirm my identity as he and I occasionally talked about NHL on twitter. "Excellent T-shirt" was all he had to say. He was also seemingly happy that Pittsburgh Penguins are doing so well this season. Anyway, since I had no personal interaction with Josh or Matt, I basically threw their gifts and all the other stuff I got for the boys at him. Yep. Quite literally. Sorry and THANK YOU SO MUCH for everything! (I hope you enjoyed my little gift too). Simon is the nicest person (really funny as well) and I'm sure everyone wants to be his friend!

Aw. I miss them so much.
Hope to meet you guys again in another tour! 

April 16, 2013

Pics and Vids from Ny

Howdy! Commo estas,  y'all? ;) 

Remember the Libera teddy bears and other gifts from the 2010 Korea concert? (read my blog here) Those passionate bunch got back together again in 2013 for these lovely English boys called Libera. As a proud supporter/organizer of both 2010 and 2013 "Libera in Korea" fan projects, I'm happy to share these pictures and videos from Ny, who had a blast working as Libera's guide/translator.

This year's "Libera in Korea" project consisted of two events: lunch and cake. The fan club prepared sandwiches, potato chips and beverages on 4/11 and delivered a special cake on 4/13 after the concert. 

All photos and videos taken with Andy's consent.   


Sandwiches being distributed by the chaperons


So many choices!


Happy peeps 



onomnomnom


Thank you message from Michael and Isaac


The special cake with the moose!


Boys with the cake


Lol. Gotta love them!


According to Ny, the boys didn't mind the idea of eating someone's face ;)


Thank you message from Cassius, Eoghan and Kavana


Lastly we had the Gangnam Style (Psy) socks and Korean chopsticks for everyone! 


THANK YOU:
  • All the fans who came and filled up the venue and everyone who gladly donated for this event. We had exceeded our target amount and was able to do more than what we initially planned! 
  • My fellow organizers HJ, JH and EY for all their efforts. Without them, this project would've fallen apart. An extended thank-you to YR for helping with the gift wrapping. 
  • The most caring and sincere Seoul Arts Management team for all their hard work. They really bent their back to make these concerts successful. 
  • All the volunteers who literally put aside their day jobs to come help Libera. 
  • Last but not least- the most amazing Libera boys and staffs. Special thank you to Mr Prizeman who pulled the aforementioned people together and work as a team. 
Visit the Korean fan cafe here: http://cafe.naver.com/liberaa

March 15, 2013

The Moon Represents My Heart Preview



Oh. My. Goodnes.

Thank you Taiwanese morning news for this awesome preview of Moon Represents My Heart!
Isaac's lovely smile while singing the 'wo ai ni you ji fen (English translation: how much I really love you)' part was so adorable that I couldn't help but smile back. Here's the full English lyrics and pronunciation:

You ask me how deep my love for you is
ni wen wo ai ni you duo shen
How much I really love you
wo ai ni you ji fen
My affection is real
wo de qing ye zhen
My love is real
wo de ai ye zhen
The moon represents my heart
yue liang dai biao wo de xin

You ask me how deep my love for you is
ni wen wo ai ni you duo shen
How much I really love you
wo ai ni you ji fen

My affection does not waver
wo de qing bu yi
My love will not change
wo de ai bu bian
The moon represents my heart
yue liang dai biao wo de xin

Just one soft kiss
qing qing de yi ge wen
is enough to move my heart
yi jin da dong wo de xin
A period of time when our affection was deep
shen shen de yi duan qing
Has made me miss you until now
jiao wo si nian dao ru jin

You ask me how deep my love for you is
ni wen wo ai ni you duo shen
How much I really love you
wo ai ni you ji fen

Go think about it
ni qu xiang yi xiang
Go and have a look [at the moon]
ni qu kan yi kan
The moon represents my heart
yue liang dai biao wo de xin

Michael UR's mini solo at the end was the biggest and most pleasant surprise for me. Soon as Michael began his verse, my eyes welled up with tears. It was kinda like when I first heard Sanctus. All I can say is that I LOVE his voice and I'm praying that Libera sings this song in Korea as well as in Taiwan. Music is an international language right? ;) Hopefully a full video releases soon!

February 23, 2013

House Cleaning

Did some major house cleaning tonight!

I started this blog when Josh was 14. Back then I was almost convinced that he was an angel but that illusion has cleared up at some point and I'd like to think that I've toned down significantly since. But when I look back to my older posts, most of them still orbited around him with a lot of energy that can sustain the international space station for a whole year. While I believe there's nothing wrong with harmless enthusiasm, I do feel that it's time for me to move on.

The reason behind this change is rather simple once rationalized; Josh is an adult now and I'd like to send my support from one adult to another. All my posts were written with a much younger Josh in mind so I think they are no longer relevant. My blog's been around for some four years now so if he were meant to read all/some/none of them, he had plenty of time. Lastly, I am secretly embarrassed by some of my own writings so they can conveniently disappear altogether! hehe.

I'm not resigning my position as a fan so you'll still see a lot of me going forward. :)