BLACKPINK Share Personal Reflections Ahead of ‘Unreal,’ Historic Headlining Set at Coachella: Exclusive
Jisoo, Jennie, Rosé and Lisa share a mix of memories, nerves, excitement and anticipation as they prepare to close out day 2 of the massive California festival.
BLACKPINK made music-festival history during their Coachella 2019 performance as the first female K-pop group to play at the iconic festival. Four years later, the quartet set a new standard entirely with a headlining slot at the Indio, Calif., fest.
Alongside Bad Bunny and Frank Ocean, BLACKPINK reign as one of the three main headliners for Coachella 2023 and the main musical affair for day 2 of both festival weekends on Saturday, April 15 and 22. While 2019 saw the act less than three years into their journey together for their Coachella debut with two EPs, Jennie‘s “Solo” debut and a handful of singles, the BLACKPINK ladies now boast two full-length albums, solo music from each member and multiple world tours to draw on for experience.
Ahead of the meaningful moment this weekend, each BLACKPINK member reflected with Billboard about their first performance in 2019, their feelings about playing in the desert this time and more.
While Jennie wowed with her group and “Solo” performances at Coachella in 2019, the singer-rapper says her anticipation of returning to the festival stage surpasses any butterflies.
“We’re so excited and honored to be able to return to Coachella as headliners,” The Idol star says. “We had the best time in 2019 and can’t wait to experience the energy of the audience again. There are some nerves, but more than anything, we’re just ready to have fun.”
Rosé says she’s still coming to terms with the opportunity to come back as headliners but recalls how substantial their first performance was in fueling the quartet’s ambitions.
“It feels absolutely unreal,” the “Gone” singer-songwriter says. “I think performing for Coachella in 2019 was a moment that really woke us up as BLACKPINK—to be motivated, to dream on and dream big. But we never expected anything as big as being the headliner of a festival we’ve all grown up admiring and hoping someday we could find ourselves in the crowd of.”
Fresh off her solo debut with “Flower,” Jisoo says with a laugh how “it’s always so happy to meet BLINKs up close” before adding, “2019 Coachella was full of fascination and excitement, but we have no clue how 2023 Coachella will be. We try all the time to show a new side of ourselves for each stage to repay the love from BLINKs. It is an honor to perform as a headliner for Coachella festival; we want to show our improvement as BLACKPINK on stage — and will — so, stay tuned.”
Despite the hundreds of thousands that attend Coachella, BLACKPINK’s youngest member Lisa says she’s sticking to the group’s mantra when approaching any performance, including anything unique for this weekend.
“Our motto is to enjoy every stage and moment, ‘as if it’s the last,’ [by] interacting with the audience by energy and doing our best while performing,” the “Money” superstar says while referencing a beloved BLACKPINK single from 2017. “We’re working hard on various performances for 2023 Coachella; look forward to it!”
While Rosé also wants to keep the focus on simply returning to the stage, she and her band mates know they must meet the moment. “We’re honestly just excited to be back at Coachella performing, period, but the deal here is—we’re headlining,” she explains. “We feel honored for this opportunity as much as we feel the immense responsibility. We’ll be bringing something fun to the table.”
After photographers snapped Jisoo and Lisa leaving for the U.S. from South Korea’s Incheon International Airport together earlier this week, the members have stayed relatively quiet – both from public view and on their social media – as they put in final preparations for Weekend 1.
Jisoo closes by saying, “Hope you enjoy 2023 Coachella with BLACKPINK,” before Jennie signs off with, “See you in the desert!”