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P-pop group KAIA is ‘bolder,’ ‘stronger’ on its second anniversary

by Joanna Deala

OUR journey, regardless of the path we are taking, is not always smooth sailing. Our resilience will be tested as we weather the storms that will come our way to success. 

But these challenges weren’t given to us for no reason. More often than not, these are what make us resilient and determined–just like what it did to rising P-pop girl group KAIA, who showed their bolder, stronger, and fiercer versions of themselves as they celebrated their second anniversary as a group through a fan concert.

Titled “KAIAVERSITY,” the fan concert was held at the Music Museum in San Juan on April 6, Saturday, where they performed and interacted with hundreds of their fans, collectively known as ZAIA.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

KAIA is composed of five members: Angela, Sophia, Charice, Charlotte, and Alexa. The group’s name is a fusion of the words “Kinaiya,” which means inner being, and “Kaya,” which refers to a person’s determination to overcome challenges. The quintet debuted on April 8, 2022, with the single “Blah Blah.” 

Looking back on their journey, Angela, the group’s leader, said that there have been changes in KAIA for the past two years.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Bolder. Stronger. Fiercer,” she told republicasia, comparing the difference between KAIA that the audience witnessed during the fan concert and the newcomer KAIA in 2022.

“Parang this time, especially sa release po naming ‘You Did It,’ ‘pag pinakinggan niyo po ‘yun, ‘yun po yung gusto namin sabihin na kahit ano pang sabihin ng ibang tao, we’ll continue on working hard, we’ll continue on improving, and we’ll continue on performing and releasing music,” she stressed.

Angela was referring to their unreleased song “You Did It,” which they performed at the concert.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

Sophia agreed with their leader and said that KAIA has matured and become more expressive. 

“Mas kaya na namin talaga i-express yung gusto namin i-express. At the same time, na-i-inspire namin yung ibang tao na we also have the same feelings as them and it’s valid,” she said.

Lessons learned

Each member also shared notable lessons they have learned as they chase their dreams and goals.

For Angela and Sophia, it is to have patience, understanding, and acceptance. Charice supported this and said that she learned to be hopeful and have faith in what is yet to come.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Lagi na ‘to naririnig, ‘Don’t give up.’ meron pa, yung may hope palagi. Every day is a new day. Bawat araw ay bawat simula. May chance every day to be better,” she said.

Angela emphasized the importance of believing in oneself, despite not getting a lot of support from other people.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Kahit na isa lang or dalawa lang yung nagsu-support sa’yo, as long as may isang sumusuporta sa’yo, just keep on believing in yourself and keep on doing your best. Makikita ‘yon ng mga tao,” she said.

Meanwhile, Alexa highlighted the practice of gratitude and appreciation for the support they have been receiving from others.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Sa’kin po, learn to look on the positive side of things kasi minsan ang nakikita natin lagi yung mga negative sa life. Tapos lagi tayong nagrereklamo, hindi natin nakikita na may mga taong nagsu-support sa’tin, nagmamahal sa’tin,” said Alexa.

She continued, “Dahil doon, dapat hindi tayo sumusuko kasi may naniniwala sa’tin.”

KAIA’s youngest member, Charlotte, also shared advice with her fellow young individuals. She said that every setback a person encounters becomes an opportunity for them to learn.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“‘Wag matakot magkamali kasi doon tayo naggo-grow. Pero ayun nga, minsan nagde-dwell kami kasi nagkamali, pero life goes on, matututo rin po tayo,” she shared.

Fan concert highlights

The “KAIAVERSITY” concert kicked off with the members’ high-powered performance of their 2021 song “KAYA.” The Music Museum exploded with cheers as the group appeared behind the audience and walked towards the stage.

Photo courtesy: republicasia

Each member has a role to play in “KAIAVERSITY,” with Angela appointed as president, Charice as vice president, Alexa as sergeant-at-arms, Sophia as treasurer, and Charlotte as secretary.

Photo courtesy: republicasia

Following the “KAYA” stage, ZAIA immediately interacted with their idols when several fans were chosen to go up on stage to participate in a game called “KAIABEE,” where they answered a few questions based on general knowledge.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

The quintet also left ZAIA in awe of their graceful and polished dance cover of “Feeling Myself” by Nicki Minaj featuring Beyoncé. The members also grabbed the chance to showcase how talented their fans are by challenging them with viral TikTok dances. 

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

The night turned emotional when the members read the letters from their beloved ZAIA, who expressed their love, gratitude, and support for the girls.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

KAIA then heated up the stage when they finally performed “5678” and “Turn Up.”

For their last segment with fans, KAIA acted with several ZAIA on stage, where they picked up a scenario to portray from a glass bowl and completed their dialogues with song lyrics. Several ZAIA were also recognized for their participation in each segment, where they were awarded Best in Grammar, Best in Research, Most Dramatic, Best in Filipino, and Best in English, among others.

KAIA capped off the fan concert with their comeback song “You Did It,” which will be released on April 12.

Aside from the fans, other P-pop groups including AJAA, 6SENSE, VXON, and YARA were also present at the fan concert to support KAIA.

Favorite part

Angela said that the group was grateful for having a fan concert as a celebration of their second anniversary in the Philippine music industry.

“Sobrang personal po kasi talaga ng relationship namin with ZAIA, and of course kami pong KAIA, two years na rin po kami and nakita ko rin po yung mga struggles, yung mga wins, yung mga loses. Lahat ng nangyari sa’min nagpatibay sa’min as a group, so we’re very happy to be able to spend it with our own ZAIA,” said the leader.

Looking back at their journey, Charlotte couldn’t help but feel proud of each member who has braved many storms.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Sobrang nostalgic. Sobrang nakaka-proud lang po kasi two years na po kami after debut,” she said, adding that they will continue to work hard to give excellent performances to their fans.

The members also shared their favorite parts in the fan concert, and for Charice, it was when they performed their forthcoming song.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Super excited kami talagang ipakita sa inyo ‘yon kasi ang daming pinagdaanan. And nakita po naman dito sa ‘You Did It’ ang daming sumusuporta sa amin para magkaroon kami ng magandang—maipakita po sa ZAIA and also sa mga nagsu-support po samin,” she stressed.

Sophia’s favorite, on the other hand, was their Hip Hop segment or their dance cover of “Feeling Myself,” which she said highlighted the dance prowess of each member.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Sobrang naging challenging, pero at the same time sobrang thankful ko to our coaches kasi ginabayan talaga kami with this one,” said the member.

For Angela, it was when they read letters from their fans. She described the segment as “very special” and “very emotional” since they did not often get a chance to have heartfelt conversations with ZAIA.

Charlotte, on the other hand, had so much fun during their acting segment with the fans.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Kitang-kita rin po na nag-e-enjoy po yung iba naming juniors. Wow! In character pa rin. Pero ayun po very happy na nakikita ko pong nag-e-enjoy and nakangiti rin po yung lahat,” she shared.

If one would ask Alexa about her favorite part, she said it would be their opening performance, adding that “KAYA” has become a special song for the group.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

“Parang anthem na namin yung ‘KAYA’ na song, and gustong-gusto din po kasi talaga namin i-share yung meaning nung kanta talaga ng KAIA na kahit anong mangyari sa’yo kakayanin mo lagi,” she emphasized.

Future of KAIA

There will surely be more artists venturing into the local music scene in the next few years, which is why Angela believes that the P-pop scene will thrive in the future.

“Mas successful, mas malaki, mas relatable, mas maraming magkaka-connect kahit hindi nila naiintindihan yung language natin,” said the leader.

Photo courtesy: Sean Rencel Guan | republicasia

Hoping for “global domination” for P-pop, Angela said that people around the globe will be able to see the unique flavor of Pinoy music and the authenticity of Filipinos in their discography. 

And this is what ZAIA will be seeing from KAIA in the coming years, she added.



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