On music shows and other broadcasts, K-Pop idols tend to stick to the known formula of singing and dancing, with some deviations into different concepts and covers. However, live awards shows, concerts and events allow idols to explore performance art more, and there have been some epic collaborations and performances that did the unexpected, shocking fans with a new concept, collaboration, steamy kiss or epic musical mix.
1. Epik High’s “Mental Hospital” performance
Epik High collaborated with Lee Hi to perform a melody of hits for their MAMA 2012 performance… wearing Batman villain masks. It went down as one of the most unexpected performances of MAMA history.
2. CL and 2NE1 at MAMA 2015
When CL was making waves as a soloist and 2NE1 hadn’t performed together in over a year together, they shocked fans by turning up to sing with CL on her solo stage at MAMA 2015.
3. Rain’s epic stage at the 2008 MKMF
This 15-minute performance not only included some stunning visuals, but loud bangs and unexpected flying stunts – plus, Rain has a stage presence that is unique to Rain.
4. Park Bom at Psy’s concert
At Psy‘s “Happening” concert in 2012, 2NE1’s Park Bom just started singing from below stage. Fans didn’t know who it was, until she appeared – and the audience went wild.
Not only did Psy surprise fans with Park Bom turning up to help him sing “What Would Have Been?”, but the whole of 2NE1 came on stage later to perform their hit “I Am The Best”.
5. When Hyuna and Hyungseung kissed on stage
This was the first live-stage kiss at a MAMA event, and no-one actually expected them to do it… but not only that, the performance was an epic collaboration between Troublemaker and BEAST that included some stunning orchestra moments and an unexpectedly dark concept.
They kissed again at the 2013 MAMA awards…
6. When Mamamoo didn’t appear first… A cross-dressing male dance crew did
At the 2016 Melon Awards, Mamamoo began singing, but the first people to appear on stage were members of the gender-fluid dance crew Pinky Cheeks. The camera panned to TWICE‘s Nayeon and her confusion is apparent, until the members appear.
7. When JYP performed this overly sexual number
While the choreography was shocking for a MAMA concert, the truly surprising and hilarious part of this clip is his idols’s reactions… on the one hand, GOT7‘s Jackson is loving it, but the TWICE members can’t even look!
8. When T.O.P kissed Lee Hyori
As if it wasn’t epic enough when Lee Hyori and BIGBANG shared the stage at the 2008 Mnet Korea Music Festival (which later became MAMA), T.O.P brought the house down when he surprised everyone by locking lips with the singer mid-performance.