Lady Gaga's Seoul Concert Overcomes Angry Christians

Lady Gaga’s Seoul concert was the 2nd biggest ever held in Korea despite a government ban on attendance by those under 18 and protests and boycotts by various Christian groups. Her “Born This Way Ball” world tour kicked off in Seoul in front of 45,000 fans at Olympic Stadium.

“I could barely sleep last night,” the self-described Monster Mother twittered Saturday. “It was the second highest attendance of fans in the history of concerts in Korea. I’m so grateful for all of you… Last night was like being completely prepared for a moment you could never prepare for.”

Lady Gaga left Korea later Saturday for concerts in Hong Kong beginning May 2, followed by Tokyo, Taipei, Manila, Bangkok, Singapore, Indonesia, New Zealand, Australia and Europe.

“Lady Gaga openly glamorizes homosexuality and displays grotesque performances while deprecating Christianity,” said a statement issued by the Christian Council of Korea the day before the concert.

It also threatened Hyundai Card for sponsoring the concert.

“The Christian Council of Korea, which is joined by 12 million Christians and 55,000 churches in Korea, will by all means eradicate such obscenity by holding protests against Hyundai Card as well as a boycott.”

About 20 young Christians sang and prayed in front of the venue for an hour before the concert began after 8 p.m. Hundreds of Christians also gathered at a church near the stadium on Friday and began praying from 7 p.m. until the concert ended nearly two hours after it began, according to the Korea Association of Church Communication. Despite concerns that violence might break out between Christian protestors and fans waiting outside the stadium early to show off their Gaga-inspired costumes and makeup, the even went off as smoothly as can be expected of a concert of that scale. About 1,200 personnel had been deployed to prevent trouble, according to Hyundai Card.

The biggest obstacle came from the government which imposed a last-minute ban against attendance by anyone under 18 on the ground that the Lady Gaga concert was “harmful for youth.”

“I was told that your government decided that my show should be 18 or over,” Lady Gaga told the crowd, to enthusiastic applause. “So I’ll make sure it will be.”

Lady Gaga danced suggestively with both male and female dancers. She shouted some profanities and encouraged the crowd to join in. She for nearly two hours with the exception of a number of fast costume changes.

Some fans left unhappy because the screens were small and focused more on the backup dancers than on Lady Gaga herself.

The only concert to have drawn a bigger crowd was the one given by Michael Jackson in 1997. He gave two performances at the same Olympic Stadium used by Lady Gaga.