Asian acts from Jackson Wang to 2NE1 front and centre at Coachella 2022

CL of 88rising, who rose to fame as a member of former K-pop girl group 2NE1, performs at the Coachella Music & Arts Festival in California.
PHOTO: Instagram/CL

Asian musicians and artists of Asian descent have taken centre stage at this year's Coachella.

The popular music festival takes place over the weekends of April 15 to 17 and 22 to 24 in the Colorado Desert in California, and returns after being cancelled previously because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Over the first weekend, the biggest moments came during the section curated by 88Rising, an Asian-centric music company.

The performers included rising South Korean star Bibi with hip-hop icon YoonMirae, and K-pop star CL, who hosted a surprise reunion with fellow members of former girl group 2NE1.

(From left) Former 2NE1 members Park Bom, Minzy, CL and Dara reunite on stage at the Coachella Music & Arts Festival.
PHOTO: Instagram/CL

Japanese star Hikaru Utada, Chinese soloist and member of Got7 Jackson Wang, and Indonesian stars Niki and Rich Brian also performed. Thai artist Milli went viral after eating sticky rice with mango on stage.

88Rising's set for week two will feature an appearance by K-pop girl group Aespa, who will be performing an unreleased song for the first time.

Beyond the 88Rising sets, artists including J-pop icon Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, South Korean hip-hop trio Epik High, South Korean DJ Peggy Gou and Britain-Japanese pop star Rina Sawayama also performed.

Asian-American acts also took the stage at Coachella, and there were plenty of viral moments, such as Raveena performing 1971 Bollywood hit Dum Maro Dum in the middle of her set.

Japanese Breakfast and Conan Gray were also among the event's performers. Many of these same artists will perform on the second weekend.

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This article was first published in South China Morning Post.