Before the show began, Billboard‘s vice president and Latin industry lead Leila Cobo made eager fans even more amped by reminding them that CNCO is not only up for two MTV Video Music Awards, but will be performing on the pre-show just a few days after the event. “We are so proud to be partnering with Pepsi to present the new generation of Latin superstars and no one is a better example of that than our headliners tonight,” Cobo said. “They are hands down the top Latin music group today.”
Opener Matt Hunter held his own prior to CNCO taking the stage, bringing the perfect amount of energy as he delivered his own hits like “Una Vez Màs” and his Lele Pons collaboration “Dicen.” The New York native made his hometown appearance even more special with a surprise from Gashi for their team-up “Problemas.”
While fans were plenty excited for Hunter, the screams elevated once it was CNCO’s turn, and they didn’t stop until the group finished more than an hour later. Beginning with their club-ready hit “Hey DJ,” CNCO’s flawless choreography had the mostly female crowd going crazy through some of their most well-known tunes, “Llegaste tú” and “Mamita,” and especially so when the show briefly became a PG-13 Magic Mike during “Sólo Yo.”
Despite the small size of the stage (the entire venue hardly holds 600 people, after all), the CNCO guys (Richard Camacho, Erick Brian Colon, Zabdiel de Jesús, Joel Pimentel and Christopher Vélez) made their performance feel like an arena show. Not only did the group bust out intense choreography for nearly every song, but they also showed that they offer more than just smooth moves with a medley that put their vocals at the forefront — particularly “Fiesta en Mi Casa.” They even incorporated a number with mic stands, for those who adore cheesy boy band antics.
There’s no denying that the CNCO guys have their performances down to a fine art, but perhaps their En Vivo show was particularly impactful because of their genuine chemistry. Whether they were high-fiving each other, taking selfie videos with the crowd, or simply engaging in playful banter, it was evident that all five CNCO members are still enjoying the ride four years into their career.
Plus, the energy in the room was infectious thanks to the passionate fans who came out for the show. CNCO returned the love several times, with Camacho declaring to the crowd, “You guys are the fundamental part of CNCO. You guys are CNCO.”
During their final song, “Reggaetón Lento (Bailemos),” confetti rained down over the crowd, making for another arena-made moment. Judging by CNCO’s En Vivo performance, arenas aren’t far off.