BTS Military Service
The seven members of the K-pop band BTS, one of the most popular bands globally, will perform their required military service under South Korean law, ending a long national debate over whether they should receive an exemption. Under South Korean law, all able-bodied men are expected to serve 18 to 21 months in the military to defend against the threat from the country’s nuclear-armed neighbour, North Korea. But the law allows for special exemptions for some, including athletes, musicians and others who contribute to the country’s reputation.
The band’s management company made the announcement on 17th October. The music agency said it was the “perfect time” for the announcement after a “phenomenal concert to support Busan’s bid for the World Expo 2030.”
BTS Members to Do Military Service in South Korea
While many fans of the K-pop sensations were expecting the band members would be given an exemption due to their contribution to the South Korean economy and international reputation, the artists will now have to serve almost two years in the military.
Jin, the oldest member of the group, would be the first to join soon after he turns 30 in December, media reports said. The six other members, born between 1993 and 1997, will follow suit, with the band expected to join as a team to perform in around 2025, according to their management company, Big Hit Music.
There had been debate over whether the group members could be given an exemption from service because of their artistic success.
Big Hit Music said the band’s oldest member, Jin, cancelled his request to postpone his service. The six other BTS members are also ready to serve in the military. The group is looking forward to joining together again “around 2025 after their service commitment,” the company said in an official statement.
No other information related to the timing of their service was told. The band members performed together in Busan, Korea, over the weekend. That would be their last performance as a group until they finish serving in the military, Big Hit said.
Hybe is the parent company of Big Hit. In a letter to shareholders, Hybe CEO Park Jiwon said there should not be financial concerns related to the BTS military service. He said the company had signed other successful artists like K-pop group NewJeans, and Western performers Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande. We have always been aware of the eventuality of mandatory military service, and we have long been making preparations to be ready for this moment,” Park wrote. He added that “individual activities for several of the members are planned into the first half of 2023…”