Park Geun-hye was sworn in as the first female president of South Korea on Monday, and the festive inauguration ceremony wouldn’t have been complete without the country’s most famous pop star -- PSY.
The globetrotting singer, who recently appeared in Brazil and Turkey to perform his infectious “Gangnam Style,” made sure to clear his schedule for the occasion. Even though the 35-year-old had refused to grant Park -- or any other former presidential candidates -- the right to use his number as her campaign song (he didn’t want his music to be used for political ends, his agency YG Entertainment had said), he expelled any doubts about whether he would attend the big event when he signed on as headliner.
For the ceremony held in front of Seoul’s National Assembly, PSY appeared in a more understated version of his signature blinged-out formal wear: a sleek black tuxedo, white-framed sunglasses, and similarly monochrome Oxford shoes.
“Last year, ‘Gangnam Style’ allowed me to experience something of a miracle. As a Korean citizen, I sincerely wish that, with the beginning of a new administration, everyone can have their own miracle and luck,” said the singer, announcing his next song. “I know this is a very formal event but if you could please stand up and join me for the horse dance, it would be great.”
He soon had the entire crowd of some 89,000 Korean attendees on their feet and smiling for a collective rendition of his famous horse dance (even the new head-of-state showcased the iconic sequence, wrist action and all, during her presidential campaign last year).