By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
The year 2008 has not even started, but it is already shaping up to be an even more exciting year for concertgoers.
International superstar Celine Dion is expected to dazzle Korean audiences with her powerful vocals during her two concerts in Seoul in March. Popular American rock bands Maroon 5 and My Chemical Romance are also performing in March and January, respectively.
Dion's concerts on March 18 and 19 at the Gymnastics Stadium, Olympic Park, are expected to be one of the most eagerly awaited events in 2008. This is part of Dion's ``Taking Chances World Tour,'' which kicks off on Feb. 14 in South Africa.
However, it is also one of the most expensive concerts, with VIP tickets at 300,000 won and premium tickets at 220,000 won. Other tickets range from 75,000 won to 180,000 won. Ticket sales start on Dec. 27.
Dion released her latest album ``Taking Chances,'' last month. On Dec. 15, the Canadian diva ended her highly successful ``A New Day'' concert series at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, where she has been performing since 2003.
Last April, record label SonyBMG said Dion has sold over 200 million records around the world. Her hit songs include ``Beauty and the Beast,'' ``Because You Loved Me,'' ``It's All Coming Back to Me Now'' and ``The Power of Love.'' However, the song that really catapulted her to stardom was ``My Heart Will Go On,'' from the blockbuster film ``Titanic.''
Rockers in Seoul
Multi-platinum-selling American rock group Maroon 5 will perform for the first time in Seoul on March 7 at the Gymnastics Stadium, Olympic Park. Known for their pop-rock and soul-influenced music, Maroon 5 topped the charts around the world with songs such as ``Harder to Breathe,'' ``This Love'' and ``She Will Be Loved.''
The band is composed of vocalist Adam Levine, guitarist James Valentine, keyboardist Jesse Carmichael, bassist Mickey Madden and drummer Matt Flynn. In 2002, Maroon 5 released their first album ``Songs About Jane,'' selling millions of albums around the world.
They attracted controversy with their single ``Harder to Breathe,'' for its steamy music video and what some critics described as ``misogynistic'' lyrics.
After five years, Maroon 5 released their second album ``It Won't Be Soon Before Long'' in May. The first single ``Makes Me Wonder'' hit number one on the U.S. Billboard charts in May.
Tickets for ``Maroon 5 Live in Korea'' start at 55,000 won to 88,000 won. Tickets will go on sale on Jan. 3.
Meanwhile, My Chemical Romance will perform on Jan. 22, at Olympic Hall, Olympic Park, as part of their ``Black Parade World Tour.'' The group is best known for their dark, melodramatic songs such as ``Welcome to the Black Parade,'' ``Famous Last Words,'' ``I Don't Love You'' and ``Teenagers.''
My Chemical Romance, formed in 2001, is composed of Gerard Way, Mikey Way, Frank Iero, Ray Toro and Bob Bryar. They released their first album ``I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love,'' in 2002, but it was their second album ``Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge'' that brought them mainstream success.
In September 2006, My Chemical Romance released its third album ``The Black Parade,'' which catapulted the group to new heights. The first single ``Welcome to the Black Parade'' topped the singles charts in the United Kingdom.
My Chemical Romance started the "Welcome to the Black Parade World Tour" last February, and played in Italy, Austria, Belgium, Germany, United Kingdom, Australia and Singapore.
Tickets for the My Chemical Romance concert are 88,000 won and 66, 000 won. Visit ticket.interpark.com (Korean only).