On June 5th, it was announced that the girl group ‘aespa’ (에스파) will be participating in the Waterbomb Festival, sparking concerns among fans for member Ningning’s eye health.
The Waterbomb Seoul 2023 festival, scheduled to take place from June 23rd to 25th at the Jamsil Sports Complex Auxiliary Stadium, revealed its lineup. The lineup includes StayC, Kwon Eunbi, Zico, Woo Wonjae, Coogie, Ash Island, Swings, Sik-K, Haon, and BTOB on the 23rd, followed by Jay Park, Jessi, Camo, Loco, Gray, Yugyeom, PH-1, Lil Cherry & GOLDBUUDA, Zior Park, and Oh My Girl on the 24th.
On the 25th, Big Naughty, Simon Dominic, Lee Youngji, DPR LIVE, HyunA, Bibi, and aespa are set to perform. However, concerns are growing for aespa’s Ningning (닝닝).
The Waterbomb Festival is the largest music and water-themed event in South Korea, where water balloons are dropped, and the audience shoots water guns at the artists. Ningning revealed her poor eye health during an interview with ‘Vogue China’ in March, showing the eye drops she carries with her.
She said, “I had surgery when I was young, so I can barely see with my right eye. That’s why I carry eye drops to prevent dryness.” According to Chinese media, Ningning suffers from Acanthamoeba keratitis, a rare infection caused by a parasite that infiltrates the cornea, leading to inflammation. The infection can be contracted through tap water, swimming pool water, river water, or seawater.
Acanthamoeba keratitis can cause vision impairment or even blindness in severe cases. Fans are worried that Ningning, who cannot see with one eye, might get water in her eyes during the festival. In previous Waterbomb events, some artists have expressed pain after being hit in the face with water guns shot by the audience. (G)I-DLE’s Jeon Soyeon once asked the audience during a performance, “Please don’t shoot at our eyes.”
We hope Ningning will be provided some sort of protection for her eye, as the priority should always be health first.