South Korean Pop group BTS on Tuesday announced that they will be going on a “indefinite hiatus” to pursue individual careers, but promised they would “return someday”. The seven members of the group are credited with generating billions of dollars for the South Korean economy.
The group members, who have been together for nine years, made it clear that they are not disbanding.
The announcement was made during their streamed annual “FESTA” dinner, part of a celebration that marks their anniversary as a group.
In the hour-long YouTube video, group member RM, 27, said that after the Grammy-nominated BTS’ last few singles he “didn’t know what kind of group we were anymore,” adding later that group members were “exhausted.”
“I’ve always thought that BTS was different than other groups,” he continued. “But the problem with K-pop and the whole idol system is that they don’t give you time to mature.”
“You have to keep producing music and keep doing something… I’ve changed as a human over the past 10 years, so I needed to think and have some alone time,” RM said.
Jimin, 26, said, “We can’t help but think of our fans no matter what, we want to be the kind of artists that are remembered by our fans. I think now we’re starting to think about what kind of artists we each want to be remembered by our fans.”
Many of the group members broke down towards the end of the video and expressed gratitude towards their fans, known as the “ARMY”.
BTS members, who are all in their twenties and frequently wear earrings and lipstick, have given a voice to a generation that is comfortable with gender diversity.