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‘Para kaming nasa panaginip:’ Ben&Ben shares experience in Ed Sheeran’s Manila concert

by Joanna Deala

WHEN life gives us a once-in-a-lifetime moment, we make sure that we seize it. 

This is exactly what indie folk-pop band Ben&Ben did when they were invited as a special guest during the Manila leg of “+ – = ÷ x Tour (pronounced as Mathematics Tour)” of sought-after English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran.

On social media, the “Kathang Isip” hitmaker expressed how they were in a state of euphoria as they shared with their fans their experience at Ed’s concert, which was held on March 9 at the SMDC Festival Grounds in Parañaque.

“Grabe, we still can’t believe it. Para kaming nasa panaginip. We’re so grateful. We’re extremely happy. Sobrang kinikilig pa rin kami hanggang ngayon,” Ben&Ben wrote.

During the concert, Ben&Ben serenaded the Filipino crowd with their hit songs “Paninindigan Kita,” “Kathang Isip,” “Pagtingin,” “Sa Susunod Na Habang Buhay” and “Leaves.”

‘Maybe The Night’ stage

But if there was something that would definitely be one for the books for both the band and Filipino audiences, it was when Ed joined Ben&Ben’s frontmen, Paolo Benjamin and Miguel Benjamin Guico, onstage to perform the Pinoy band’s 2017 song “Maybe The Night.”

In a clip shared by Philippine Concerts on X (formerly Twitter), the twin brothers and Ed could be seen performing together in a moving round stage, with Ben&Ben’s frontmen singing the first verse of the song. 

Ed sang the second verse while playing guitar, eliciting cheers from the audience.

For Miguel, such a collaboration with the “Thinking Out Loud” hitmaker was surreal. He thanked Ed for giving them the opportunity to share the stage at his concert, as she shared photos of their “Maybe The Night” performance on Instagram.

“You’ve been a huge blessing and inspiration to so many musicians and fans, us included! This will forever be deep within our core memories,” Miguel said.

He exclaimed, “P.S. The rest of the band loved listening to your band play the song. They killed it last night!”

Paolo also posted some snaps of their performance with Ed, where he and his brother could be seen bowing to the “Shape of You” singer. He also thanked Ed for being their inspiration.

Ed, on the other hand, shared an Instagram reel of the “Maybe The Night” stage and called Ben&Ben “bloody brilliant.”

Backstage interaction

In their social media post, the nine-piece band also narrated how Ed greeted them backstage and shook their hands after their set.

“Nakipag-kwentuhan pa muna siya ng konti samin, na parang kaibigan lang namin,” the band members said.

“To share the stage with such a genuine and brilliant artist is a great honor and more than that, to have conversations with this very same person is beyond our wildest dreams,” they continued.

Ben&Ben also thanked everyone who has been supportive of their music, particularly their fans called Liwanag.

“Thank you for being with us. Ahhhhhh we love you all. We’ll be loving you til we’re 70 and beyond!!” they said.


Aside from their live performances and backstage interactions with Ed, Ben&Ben also took the chance to have a karaoke session with the 33-year-old singer-songwriter.

Karaoke has been hugely popular in the Philippines. It has become a staple in every Filipino gathering such as birthday parties, family reunions or fiesta.

In a video posted by Ed, he could be seen pushing a portable karaoke machine and singing some songs with his special guests Ben&Ben and Calum Scott and several staff members prior to his “Mathematics” concert.

Among the songs performed with the karaoke machine is Ed’s “Perfect” and “Thinking Out Loud,” Beyoncé’s “Love On Top,” ABBA’s “Dancing Queen,” and Maroon 5’s “This Love.”

“Karaoke is a huge thing here in the Philippines, so I found a portable machine to wheel around backstage before the show tonight in Manila. Shout out to Ben&Ben and Calum Scott for bringing the A game,” Ed said.

The “Mathematics Tour” was Ed’s third concert in the country following “Divide” in 2018 and “Multiply” in 2015.



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