Girl band THE9 holds China’s first Extended Reality music concert
Published: Mar 29, 2021 04:53 PM
Chinese girl band The9 Photo: VCG

Chinese girl band The9 Photo: VCG

The nine members of Chinese girl band THE9, who were selected during the 2020 Chinese survival show Youth with You 2 starring South Korean idol Lisa, held a special concert on Friday and Saturday that made use of Extended Reality (XR) technology to present a stunning stage for audiences.

More than 40,000 tickets for the event were sold in a few minutes, owing to the popularity of the girl band as well as the advanced technology adding special effects to the stage performance.

The concerts used XR technology to fuse real performers and a virtual background, taking the different stories of THE9 members to build virtual cities for the nine singers, according to Shanghai-based media outlet The Paper.

Through elements such as a colorful tropical rain forest, giant marionettes and mechanical feathers covered with thorns, the stories of the nine young women who dared to challenge themselves were presented on the futuristic stage.

Through the use of XR, THE9 performed on what appeared to be various city blocks, each created in different art styles. At the same time, audiences could move through the city, jumping between the virtual and the reality.

Looking at discussions on China's Twitter-like Sina Weibo, most audiences at the concert were happy with the presentation, which was something of an experiment in China. 

The related hashtag for the concerts has earned more than 400 million views on Sina Weibo as of Monday.

"The stage accentuated Liu Yuxin's performance. She sang and danced among the ruins of a city, which impressed me very much," a Chinese fan of band member Liu Yuxin who watched the concert livestream on iQIYI, told the Global Times on Monday.

The concerts even gave viewers a chance to "attend" in real life. After purchasing tickets, users could create avatars that were uploaded to on-site screens. 

The Paper report said that the production team behind the event spent more than half a year preparing for the online concert.

"Online concerts are basically a content business and only high quality content can attract paying users and finally improve the sustainable development of the music industry," Fan Zhihui, a music industry analyst, told the Global Times.