Article by: Louine Hope Conserva
Photos from: Various IKO members
In the course of eight years, Iloilo K-Pop Organization has grown into a core that provides a hub for hundreds of Korean pop culture staunch across Panay Island.
(IKO staff and cover artists at the IKO: Hearts for Good Charity Event last December 18, 2016)
(IKO members at N.O.M mall tour last September 29, 2013)
Since then, the organization has hosted more than 40 K-Pop-themed events varying from dance cover contests, dance showcase, mini concerts, acquaintance party, music awards, conventions, fairs and exhibits, Christmas party, sports olympics, summer festivals, and dance workshops, among others.
(IKO cover artists and staff grouped together like the Idol Sports Athletics Championships in Korea last November 23, 2014. The photo above was during the Chicken fight)
Our cover groups were invited to perform at the Bugas sa Lusong Festival of Bugasong, Antique in January 2014.
(IKO representative cover boy group, C-Unit, performing at Bugas sa Lusong Festival 2014 in Bugasong, Antique)
We have also invited members of prominent cover groups in Manila as guests for our events.
(From left above: Super Junior/B1A4 Famous Cover Group from Manila, Super Simple, with C-Unit last Iloilo-Korean Friendship Festival 2013; Right above: Edsel and Kurt Sadje as judges last Korean Festival 2015; Right down: Ken de Guzman [PH representative and award-winning cover group, Se-Eon, ex-member a.k.a Jungkook PH as others call] and Micko Rivera [Infinite Woohyun PH] with local cover groups, B.I.P and Gizibe; Down: IKO staff with Keith and Ken de Guzman [DGB] and Josh Santos [of Se-Eon]).
IKO has also been a constant partner of SM City Iloilo and the Iloilo-Korean United Association in the annual celebration of the Iloilo-Korean Friendship Festival every September.SM City Iloilo also invites us to organize events during the mall’s Back-to-School activities every June.
(IKO members and staff joining DOH World AIDS Day Celebration and SM City Iloilo Independence Day Celebration)
We have been partners with the Korean Cultural Center of the Philippines since 2013 and have been helping in organizing the Korean Film Festival at SM City Iloilo every September.
(Search for the Next Super Idol 2 and Who Is Next: Kpop Dance Cover Competitions held during Korean Festival 2014 in SM City Iloilo)
(Kpop Dance Summer Workshop and Kpop Collection Exhibit)
(IKO members and staff as part of the organizing team during the Korean Film Festival 2015 and 2016)
Since it was founded in 2009, IKO proved to not only be an impresario for overzealousteenyboppers forming cover groups to express their snowball obsession for Korean music.
Leaving out of theK-Pop cocoon, IKO embodies a dutiful organization through the conduct of charity events and participation in advocacy campaigns of both the government and non-government organizations.
We take pride in having our IKO Hygiene Campaign in partnership with the Rotaract Club of Iloilo South.We also participate in the annual World AIDS Day Celebration and World Diabetes Day of the Department of Health (DOH).We actively participated during the Youth Jam: A Pre-Election Awareness Initiative Performances organized by Rotary Club of Iloilo; Philippine Independence Day Celebration Parade by SM City Iloilo; and first Korean-Ilonggo Friendship Night by the Iloilo-Korean Untied Association.
And just recently, Iloilo K-Pop Organization held a charity event for the benefit of World Vision Philippines.
IKO has amassed partnership with several corporate firms and has fostered international relations.
All these accomplishments would not be made possible without the backingof our hardworking staff who took their time out of their busy schedule, juggling both their banausic life and staff duties.We also express our heartfelt gratitude to our overseas “ahjumma” staff, whom despite the distance, never forget to make their presence felt by extending their help, may it be monetary or moral support.
IKO never once claimed to be an excellent association. If there is one thing that the organization can brag about, it is that we were able to use our deep love for K-Pop to extend help.
IKO has built such an unspoken sisterhood and brotherhood of fandom.We compete from time to time, but at the end of the day we are all just myrmidonswhose love for K-Pop transcends boundaries of culture and language.
We may be criticized for mangling up lyrics of songs we barely understand and being stuck in our little corner of incomprehension. But music is a preference, as what 2ne1’s leader CL said.
“People meet by chance. But ours is such a sweet and thrilling serendipity.”
It has been a wonderful journey in the esoteric world of Korean music. Giving K-Pop a spin is all worth it!