K-pop superstars thrill fans at Mnet Asian Music Awards

Big Bang react backstage after winning Artist of the Year award.
Big Bang react backstage after winning Artist of the Year award.PHOTO: REUTERS
Park Jin-young won “Best Male Artist”.
Park Jin-young won “Best Male Artist”.REUTERS

HONG KONG (AFP) - Screaming fans turned out in Hong Kong on Wednesday for one of the biggest events on the K-pop calendar, the Mnet Asian Music Awards.

Among the performers at the annual awards ceremony were South Korea's Psy, known for his hit song Gangnam Style, and British electronic band the Pet Shop Boys.

Big Bang, a K-pop boyband, took home many of the night's most coveted awards including "Artist of the Year", "Worldwide Favourite Artist" and "Song of the Year" for their dance tune Bang Bang Bang.

The group also won "Best Music Video" for Bae Bae.

"I want to say thanks so much to all fans. You guys are amazing... Everybody, you are everything," said Lee Seung-hyun, known as Seungri, who also thanked fans in multiple languages including Japanese and Putonghua.

"We will try even harder to prove we deserve it," Kwon Ji-Yong, or "G-Dragon", another member, said on stage.

The Pet Shop Boys, known for 1980s pop hits including Go West and What Have I Done To Deserve This, were handed the "Worldwide Inspiration Award".

The duo performed a medley of songs before launching into a rendition of more a recent piece, Vocal, along with Korean girl group f(x).

"We came all the way from England. We'd like to thank you for this amazing award. Thanks for the appreciation. We'd also like to thank all of our amazing loyal fans right across Asia. We love you," said lead singer Neil Tennant.

Psy wrapped up the show with his latest release, Daddy, followed by his signature megahit Gangnam Style, which has racked up more than 2.4 billion YouTube views and become its most-watched video of all time.

Korean songstress Kim Tae-Yeon took the gong for "Best Female Artist" before snatching up the "Best Female Group" award with her bandmates from Girls' Generation.

The "Best Male Artist" award went to singer-turned-producer Park Jin-Young.

The K-pop genre, short for Korean pop, has made huge inroads into the international music scene in recent years, gaining fans from around Asia and the world.