K-pop boy band BTS take a break

Boy band BTS have not had a vacation since they debuted in 2013.
Boy band BTS have not had a vacation since they debuted in 2013. PHOTO: ASSOCIATED PRESS

SEOUL • Nothing is left to chance when a South Korean company plots how its boy band can conquer the world.

So when SM agency revealed last week that it was forming a super boy band called SuperM with members drafted from NCT, EXO and Shinee, it was betting on having no competition in the short term from current super boy band BTS.

There had been no word from BTS' agency regarding activities from mid-August to end-September. On Sunday, confirmation came that BTS are taking a long break from the rigours of the business that saw the singers embarking on several worldwide tours to support a constant rollout of hit albums.

The vacation, which started on Sunday after BTS performed at the Lotte Duty Free Family Concert in Seoul, is the first that the seven members are enjoying since they debuted in 2013.

Their agency, Big Hit Entertainment, wants the gang to "recharge and prepare to present themselves anew as musicians and creators" after their punishing schedule paid off in their conquest of the key United States market.

BTS were also the first South Korean act to top the British charts earlier this year. In June, they headlined Wembley Stadium.

Big Hit hopes that the singers will get "a chance to enjoy the ordinary lives of young people in their 20s", with time devoted to family and friends as well as personal hobbies.

Big Hit has also urged fans to give the BTS members privacy if they happen to spot the musicians in public places.

But the agency is careful not to have other boy bands take full advantage of BTS' absence.

The time-out announcement coincided with the release of Bring The Soul: The Movie, a documentary about BTS, which is also screening in Singapore cinemas.

This will allow the fans to still get their fix of BTS before they head to Riyadh in Saudi Arabia to perform in October.

Fans will no doubt continue to watch BTS on YouTube, with the video for hit song DNA surpassing 800 million views over the weekend.

BTS have six other videos of chart-toppers, such as Fire and Fake Love, that have logged more than 500 million views each.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 13, 2019, with the headline 'K-pop boy band BTS take a break'. Print Edition | Subscribe