Pop singer Psy will be onstage all of five minutes when he performs his hit "Gangnam Style" at University Mall on Saturday.
But the brief appearance is expected to snarl traffic and draw a crowd of at least 3,000 people to the mall at 2200 E. Fowler Ave.
"The mall has never done anything like this before," said Shady Mawajdeh, who works at men's clothing store Eman's. "It's interesting and different. It's a good look for the mall."
The South Korean-born Psy became an international sensation this year after the "Gangnam Style" music video hit the Internet and went viral.
In the surreal video, Psy is surrounded by pretty women — along with explosions, snow and streaming laser lights — as he dances through city streets, on a subway, on a boat and other outlandish locations.
The song references the Gangnam District of South Korea, a community comparable to Beverly Hills.
University Mall has hosted local celebrities such as former Tampa Bay Buccaneers player Mike Alstott and head coach Tony Dungy, said Keily Potter, the shopping center's marketing director.
The mall has never had a musical act, she said. But University Mall's first pop performance just happens to feature a singer who counts Britney Spears and Katy Perry among his fans.
"It's huge," Potter said. "We actually had to come up with an additional traffic plan, and we've hired 12 off-duty deputies who'll be here for the event."
Potter said all the shopping center's parking decks and lots will be open for fans and customers.
But she suggests visitors park on the mall's south side near Famous Footwear then walk to Center Court, outside Macy's, where Psy will perform at 4:30 p.m. Saturday.
The show is free.
Larry McKinnon, spokesman for the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, said he anticipates no problems Saturday.
"We handle large crowds all the time," McKinnon said. "This wouldn't be something we couldn't handle. If it did get out of hand, we could always call extra deputies in."
Psy's appearance will be a shot in the arm for the 1.3 million-square-foot University Mall, which has struggled in recent years with low revenue and light foot traffic.
Mall operators have been rebuilding the image of the shopping center, completing a $12 million interior renovation in 2008, launching a marketing campaign geared toward families and touting improvements such as a Wi-Fi lounge, children's play areas and skylights that give the space a sunny feel.
Potter said the mall has enough space for Saturday's expected crowds and the electrical capacity to accommodate Psy and his entourage of backup dancers.
Radio station 93.3 WFLZ-FM is sponsoring Psy's performance. Program director Tommy Chuck said the singer's appearance in Tampa was almost cancelled.
Psy was booked to perform Sunday during the station's annual Jingle Ball concert at the Tampa Bay Times Forum, Chuck said. Sunday's concert features pop singers Justin Bieber, Ke$ha, One Republic and others.
But Psy received an invitation from President Barack Obama to perform at the White House on the same day.
"When the president of the United States asks you to perform at the White House, well, you have to go," Chuck said.
Chuck said he was able to work a deal to have the singer instead appear at the station's Jingle All the Way event at University Mall. The annual, all-day promotion gives fans a chance to win free tickets for the Jingle Ball.
"He's really doing us right," Chuck said. "Psy really understands how big a phenomenon the song has become. He doesn't want to let anyone down."
If you go
Pop singer Psy performs his monster hit "Gangnam Style" at 4:30 p.m. Saturday at University Mall, 2200 E. Fowler Ave. Visitors can register before the show to win passes to meet Psy and his dancers.
For information, call University Mall at (813) 971-3465.