“Did That Just Happen!?”: Meeting Infinite’s Nam Woo Hyun Twice in 2023

Infinite is one of the most well-loved boy groups when I became a Kpop fan. In fact, as a household name in the industry, I am fond of randomly watching their guestings in variety shows and music videos.

Even if I am not a hardcore Inspirit, Kim Myungsoo is one of the actors and singers that I dearly like. Aside from “L” (Myungsoo’s stage name in Infinite), I also have Nam Woo Hyun as my bias-wrecker so when I had the chance to cover one of his events which is his performance in Miss Universe, I did my best to do it.

The Miss Universe Event

Even if we know that Nam Woo Hyun is powerful and handsome enough to be a part of this event, I still find it a bit out of place because his performance wasn’t really broadcasted and his participation in the show is for the front act and ending.

This isn’t the first time I attended a pageant but this is the biggest one in the country and I never imagined to see myself here for the love of Kpop. We have no idea on when he will show up on-stage but I’m glad he came out first.

“Hello, Inspirits. I’m Infinite’s Nam Woo Hyun.” His greetings made an impactful entrance. It took a while since Infinite visited Manila but his solo visit here this year is a win for PH Inspirits!

A part of his performances included one of my favorite Kdrama OSTs, Shooting Stars and Lonely Night. Since we only came here for Nam Woo Hyun, we waited for more than two hours before he comes back on stage.

The chance encounter

Since the gap between his performances in Miss Universe is quite long, we had ample time to roam around. When one of my friends saw him walking, we just casually followed (in a safe respectful distance) and eventually found ourselves at the photo wall. We waited for him to pose so that we can take pictures. The only goal we have is to take nice photos since we need good photos to publish on our respective accounts.

Lucky enough, I am just literally behind Nam Woo Hyun and I just took a few photos of him before he goes back inside the waiting area. I wasn’t able to watch the second half of his performance because I badly need to go home already and it is already past 10PM. It all just happened in a minute but I’m glad I was there at the right moment. To be exact, I could only see his back more than half of that minute.

Who took this photo?

A month after Nam Woo Hyun visited Manila, he wanted to change his profile picture in the app FROMM and we are all shocked after he sent the photo I took during his Miss Universe photo wall moment.

NWH: Is the photo taken by a fan? The photo is “Daebak”. It came out well so I saved it. Was it taken by a reporter?

Attending the Miss Universe is pretty worth it as I get to see Nam Woo Hyun super near during his photo wall moments but it is literally jaw-dropping to see him acknowledging the photo I took as “good” in his standards.

I am also happy to see people tweeting me and sharing how happy they are for me and actually having a photo taken in Manila as one of his choices for his profile pictures. Even if it wasn’t really used, I am still glad that he considered my shot to be good enough.

The fact that he said the photo came out well and my shot getting recognized by an idol made me feel happier than all those academic awards I got in school when I was younger.

Be You 3: The World Will Smile

A week after the heart-stopping photo incident, a sudden announcement about Be You 3: The World Will Smile event came out. The most surprising part is that Nam Woo Hyun is also a part of the line-up. It’s only been two months and we haven’t literally processed our feels yet but here he comes again for another Manila stage. I am not complaining. I am obviously excited but I am totally surprised with the news. Aside from Nam Woo Hyun, Apink, BTOB Lee Min Hyuk and CIX are also present at the concert and press conference.

A few days before the event, I was informed that we are getting a coverage for the press conference and concert so I contacted one of my Inspirit friends and I have no idea that she is one of the admins of their Infinite fanclub in Davao.

Since I started covering events, I learned how to balance my professional side and fangirling on the side. But every time I like an artist that’s coming, I still try to show my support to the artist. This time, my friend and I decided to wear yellow and I even put my Nam Woo Hyun photocard in my clear phone case.

I printed the photo he liked as a photocard, designed a hand banner with the photo I took and bought a cap as a souvenir. After his press conference, I was standing at the door (which happened to be the place where my seat is) and I was able to hand him the small gift that I prepared.

He already passed by me so my heart skipped for a second but he went back to take it. He was smiling when he accepted it and gave me a quick “Thank you.” It was just split seconds and his reaction wasn’t really recorded on cam but I could clearly remember it, he smiled when he accepted it.

I wasn’t probably breathing properly the whole time he was talking because he came out first among the ones on the line-up (which I didn’t expect), but I am glad he did because I don’t think I could handle it further if they dragged the time.

Watch the full Press Conference of Nam Woo Hyun here:

Be You 3 Concert

For some weird reason, I already expected that Nam Woo Hyun will be the first one to perform cause my gut feels says he is flying back to Korea that night given his tight schedule. The show started with a few front acts and he was really the first to go up the stage when the main show started.

I love how he waved at all Inspirits as if other fandoms do not exist in front of him. It wasn’t long ago when I saw him but the butterflies are still there. We are so excited to see him on stage and hearing some of my favorite songs from him makes my heart flutter again. Who would have thought I am hearing “Shooting Stars” and “Lonely Night” twice this year?

He ended his stage with a promise that he’ll be coming back to Manila next time for another show and we are all hoping that the next time he is referring to is already with Infinite.

For now, as we wait for their future tours, I will still have moments where I’ll just pause and randomly think “Did that just happen?” and remember all the happy thoughts that my encounters with Nam Woo Hyun gave me.

Also, please stream Infinite’s 2023 comeback album “13egin” with the title track “New Emotions.

Article and photos: Mikhaela Javier


  • oppaislifeofficial

    Oppa is Life is a fan page created in 2019 when I felt the need for another virtual space to pour out my feels, musings and fangirl experiences. It started as a Facebook fanpage but I later on decided to open other social media accounts because a single Facebook page just doesn’t feel enough.

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