TWICE’s “READY TO BE” World Tour: Chicago Recap
TWICE proved why people need to see them in concert more than once!
Having performed their songs throughout four previous world tours and countless other live events, it would be understandable for TWICE to grow tired of their own material and unsurprising for fans to lose interest in seeing them perform. Thanks to the “READY TO BE” show, these assumptions were entirely debunked! Fans who have seen TWICE in concert before would not leave this show thinking they had seen it all before; the anticipated strong suits were on display, but so were ones people did not even know TWICE had!
The opening video had the feeling of a 4D theme park attraction, making viewers feel like they were flying through a city. Compounding the feeling of being in the middle of the action were the coinciding 2D images of an old world crumbling with on-stage sparks and puffs of smoke. Flashing lights and a celestial scene formed the backdrop of the new world, and TWICE emerged to rule it from a platform below the stage!
Dazzling in deep purple, jewel-encrusted costumes, TWICE strutted off of the platform and seamlessly transitioned into a choreographed routine, as the background continuously changed colors. The vibrant, larger-than-life backgrounds stayed a sight to behold while the group performed “SET ME FREE” and “I CAN’T STOP ME.” TWICE completed the opening trio of songs with “GO HARD,” which their shadows danced to alongside those of the backup dancers who had joined in without a hitch.
After the lights went up for some introductions and cute banter, the group jumped right back into professional mode for “MORE & MORE.” Switching things up, they performed it while seated on mobile, triangular structures. They resumed impressively detailed choreography for “MOONLIGHT SUNRISE” and “Brave” at the smaller stage beyond the runway.
With just the first six performances, TWICE managed to grab and hold onto everyone’s attention, utilize an enormous amount of special effects, and give fans both closer to and farther from the main stage a chance to feel special!
The First Round of Solo Stages
The night continued to fly by as the solo stages commenced. DAHYUN wore a stunning, dip-dye, ruffled gown as she sat at a white piano and sang “Try” by Colbie Caillat.
TZUYU and SANA chose to cover faster-tempo songs, the former dancing to “Done for me” by Charlie Puth (featuring Kehlani) and the latter performing Dua Lipa’s “New Rules.” MOMO showed off a sultrier side, rocking out to Beyoncé’s “MOVE” (featuring Grace Jones and Tems) before a pole dance. Then, MINA showed off her moves to “7 rings” by Ariana Grande, with a background matching the song’s music video’s aesthetic.
More Group Numbers
The solo stages were interrupted for some group numbers, this time with a live band that made the songs feel brand new. “Feel Special,” “CRY FOR ME,” “FANCY,” and “The Feels” felt entirely different with the live treatment. “CRY FOR ME” proved to be particularly well-suited for the makeover. The gothic ballroom imagery and dance-recital-ready outfits further made songs that TWICE have performed countless times before feel reborn.
The Second Round of Solo Stages
CHAEYOUNG sang “My Guitar” while, naturally, playing her guitar and singing at the smaller stage past the runway. Her delicate, sweet voice matched the style of the hand-drawn background images and stuffed toy by her side. JIHYO was next, belting out a yet-to-be-released song, “Nightmare” - more on that later! JEONGYEON did a 180 from “Nightmare,” shimmying in a neon green outfit to “Juice” by Lizzo. She even played a flute for a second, another nod to Lizzo. The smile-worthiness remained when NAYEON took the stage for her solo song “POP!” As she got to the song’s bridge, which includes a countdown from five, bursts of streamers and confetti exploded with each number.
The Final Chapters
All nine members returned to the stage for “Queen of Hearts,” again performed with a live band and new energy. They wore rhinestone-covered, denim ensembles while walking around both the small and big stages, interacting with the crowd as they sang a mega medley of hits.
After some talking and three more songs (“Alcohol-Free,” “Dance The Night Away,” and “Talk that Talk”), TWICE left the stage for the expected dance-off break!
Just like on the last world tour, this show ended with the camera landing on different audience members and text on the screen telling them which hit song for which they were expected to do the choreography. It was hilarious and joyful to watch a diverse array of hardcore fans rock out without any sign of self-consciousness. From those who appeared apologetic for forgetting the routine but making up something on the spot to those who didn’t miss a beat, everyone played along and kept the carefree mood alive. Seeing fans’ outfits was particularly interesting, sometimes because of the cool ways they channeled music video looks and other times because of the randomness!
There was still more fun in store, as the full group returned to the stage for two more “official” numbers before a two-song encore. Adorable baby pictures appeared next to each of them on the screen as they sang “When We Were Kids.”
They then pivoted from contemplative to angsty and mature for a breakup anthem, “CRAZY STUPID LOVE.” These two songs perfectly embodied a key takeaway from watching the show: TWICE are growing up but still staying true to who they have always been!
The encore songs were chosen by spinning a wheel and singing whatever the arrow landed on, which was “ROLLIN’” and “SIGNAL.” TWICE showed the naturalness of their skills on stage by performing these older songs like no time had passed. They did not perform their old dance routines, though, instead taking time to engage with the crowd up close. This was a nice surprise for a group one could forgive for not engaging with the crowd at all; it would have been understandable if they had just wanted to focus on hitting every mark.
One Highlight of the Show…
Another endearing aspect of the encore was seeing the members’ chemistry. From posing together for pictures to joining hands for “Ring Around the Rosie,” their unscripted moments made the genuineness of their bond evident. Because of this, fans ought not to worry about the members going their separate ways anytime soon (after all, they renewed their JYP Entertainment contracts just last year). When the members do focus on solo releases, though, it is deserved, and the best example is JIHYO. JIHYO proved to be beyond ready for her solo debut this August, singing “Nightmare” with a passion and power that ought to have made people wonder what took her so long! She both sounded and looked the part of a solo superstar, carrying herself with an earned confidence.
… and Too Many Others to Count!
The “READY TO BE” World Tour is hard to compare to TWICE’s previous tours. It is in a lane all its own, showing TWICE at the top of their game as expected but featuring dozens of surprises too. It is commendable for an artist to put on an engaging and highly-choreographed show; it is at another level to do so after already having to do so hundreds of times before! Nothing felt stale about this show; it is TWICE’s fifth world tour but had the energy of a first-time experience.
Besides JIHYO’s solo performance, it is hard to pinpoint a highlight from TWICE’s show. The new wardrobe, graphics, special effects, mash-up of hits, use of a live band, solo stages, roulette-based encore choices… it all made for a “you had to be there” spectacle! Every stage contained immersive elements that celebrated TWICE’s specific style without feeling old or repetitive. All night long, TWICE’s star power shone brighter than the stage lights, and it is obvious they have what it takes to keep on shining, separately and together, for years to come!
Check Out Chicago’s Night Two Setlist Below!
SET ME FREE
I CAN’T STOP ME
MORE & MORE
DAHYUN’s solo stage (“Try”)
TZUYU’s solo stage (“Done for Me”)
SANA’s solo stage (“New Rules”)
MOMO’s solo stage (“MOVE”)
MINA’s solo stage (“7 rings”)
CRY FOR ME
CHAEYOUNG’s solo stage (“My Guitar”)
JIHYO’s solo stage (“Nightmare”)
JEONGYEON’s solo stage (“Juice”)
NAYEON’s solo stage (“POP!”)
Queen of Hearts
Mega medley of hit songs! (“YES or YES,” “CHEER UP,” “What is Love?,” “LIKEY,” “Heart Shaker,” “KNOCK KNOCK,” “SCIENTIST”)
Dance The Night Away
Talk that Talk
When We Were Kids
CRAZY STUPID LOVE
Encore: “ROLLIN’” and “SIGNAL”
For more thoughts on the show, stay tuned for an upcoming episode of 17 Carat K-Pop, available wherever you get your podcasts and here, and watch a highlight reel below!
All photos are original; please credit “17 Carat K-Pop” if reposting anywhere.