The Olympics may be closing, but South Korea wanted the world to go out shredding. One guitarist is the talk of the closing ceremonies — and he's only 13 years old. Who played electric guitar at the PyeongChang Olympics closing ceremony? The guitarist's name is Yang Tae-Hwan, and he was amazing.
The guitarist took the stage on top of the giant ice slide and completely rocked on electric guitar. The song of choice was Vivaldi’s the "The Four Seasons." Traditionally played by four violinists, the song, "gives a musical expression to a season of the year," according to Britannica online. Obviously, Yang Tae-Hwan focused on the "Winter" portion of the famous arrangement. The song is a mix of fast and slow, capturing the feeling of the coldest season. Like, how winter feels like it lasts forever, but at the same time flies by? Yeah, that feeling.
Alongside the musician were dancers dressed in light-up suits. The whole thing was very Tron-esque. The dancers were suspended from the large Olympic slope with bungee cords, and did all sorts of athletic moves — cartwheels included. The entire stadium was lit up with technicolor lights that was set to the tune of Yang Tae-Hwan's incredible guitar playing — and enthusiastic head-banging. This kid was rocking hard.
The opening and closing Olympic ceremonies focused on a mix of old and new traditions in culture. The coolest part is the way everything seamlessly fit together and created an unforgettable performance.
Needless to say, Twitter was impressed by the skill. The 13-year-old guitarist has more talent than I ever will.
One user, @rnroll96, summed up all of our insecurity after seeing such raw talent at a young age when they said, "this amazing 13 y.o. guitarist making me feel like I haven't achieved anything..." Same, same.
Obviously, the new element in this part of the ceremony was the electric guitar. The old inspiration came from 80 musicians playing geomungos, a traditional Korean string instrument resembling a zither, according to The New York Times. The entire performance was breathtaking, and I didn't think it could get any better until Korean pop star, CL, and boy band, EXO also appeared during the opening ceremonies.
Let me fill you in on the details of these wildly famous K-pop stars. CL (real name Lee Chae-rin) got her start as the "lead rapper of the now-disbanded 2NE1," according to Hollywood Life. Although the group disbanded in 2016 after seven years together, CL has gone on to have an extremely successful career. Forbes even called her "one of the most iconic Korean female rappers and fashion icons ... [and] an artistic muse of Moschino creative director Jeremy Scott."
She's giant in the K-pop scene, but has scored major representation in the United States, as well. She is signed to YG Entertainment in Korea and teamed up with Scooter Braun (who you may recognize from Justin Bieber's Instagram as his agent) to make waves in the United States, according to Billboard.
CL opened up to Fader about the differences of working in Korea versus the United States. She said,
Back in Korea, I'm always in the studio with YG people ... I'd be given a song, and I'd cut it. But here, I write completely by myself. The last time I recorded at the house, I just invited my friends over to feel a little more natural. I'm feeling artistic.
Whatever she's doing in the studio, it's obviously working out well for her.
As far as EXO, the nine-member boy killed it. Their vibe is very R&B and electronic dance, but have also mixed it up with some Reggae in the past. This band is absolutely international when it comes to their fan base. From Russian figure skater Yevgenia Medvedeva admitting she listened to EXO before her set to President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach raving about the group — it's easy to say the games loves EXO.
And, EXO loves the Olympic Games just as much. Before the performance, EXO member, Suho, told NBC how "unbelievable" it was to be booked for the closing ceremonies. He said,
It is quite overwhelming and unbelievable. We have seen other countries holding closing and opening ceremonies for the Olympic games before, so the fact that we are performing at the closing ceremony itself is very honorable and it is really great. I'm feeling a variety of emotions and I might even cry after the show. It is an honor for the entire family and the entire group.
While the Olympics is known for it's athletics, PyeongChang will definitely go down in history for bringing some amazing musical performances. They have set the bar very high.
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