South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol definitely surprised everyone when he started singing a classic rock song at a Wednesday dinner at the White House.
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden held a dinner for the South Korean leader along with fellow politicians and celebrities like Angelina Jolie, reality TV stars Chip and Joanna Gaines, and Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT), among many others, the New York Post reported.
During the event, Biden turned to Yoon and said that he heard one of the leader’s favorite songs is Don McClean’s 1971 hit song “American Pie.” Biden said, “We want to hear you sing it.” The South Korean leader then took the mic and showed off his singing skills when he belted out a few lines from the popular song.
Accompanied only by a piano, Yoon sang several lines from the famous song. Those in attendance cheered and hollered as he sang before giving him a standing ovation.
South Korean president Yoon Suk Yeol grabbed a mic and sang the Don Mclean classic “American Pie” to an astonished audience at the White House state dinner.
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) April 27, 2023
Afterwards, Biden reportedly told him, “I had no damn idea you could sing,” the Post noted. “Don’t expect me to sing it!”
The president then gave Yoon an acoustic guitar signed by McLean. The singer-songwriter was supposed to be at the dinner but was unable to make it, the outlet noted. Yoon took the guitar and held it up looking very pleased with the gift.
“The next state dinner we’re going to have, you’re looking at the entertainment,” Biden joked with the crowd, referencing Yoon.
Earlier in the day, the Biden’s welcomed Yoon and his wife Mrs. Kim to the White House for a state visit. The two men later held a joint press conference in the Rose Garden.
Yoon thanked the president for the “special and warm hospitality. I am very pleased to be making a state visit to the United States during this meaningful year that marks the 70th anniversary of the ROK-U.S. Alliance.”
“Our two countries have overcome challenges and crises during the past 70 years based on the deep roots of freedom and democracy, building a value alliance that is strong, resilient, and sustainable,” he added.
President Biden is scheduled to host his first state dinner at WH for President Macron of France on Dec. 1, I’m told. 🇺🇸🇫🇷 https://t.co/0TB1ph3hOV
— jim acosta (@Acosta) September 26, 2022
In December 2022, the Bidens held their first state dinner when they hosted a black tie affair to honor visiting French President Emmanuel Macron.