BTS still allowed to perform even while in military says South Korean defence ministry

Photo credit: Big Hit Music (BTS)

Tens of millions of fans of the South Korean supergroup BTS will be thrilled to hear the latest announcement from the South Korean defence ministry today.

The announcement that BTS will still be allowed to perform in live events in South Korea, even while serving their compulsory national service terms.

This after it was reported yesterday every member of BTS would be serving their 18-21 month military service terms over the next couple of years —  just like every able-bodied man in South Korea between the ages of 18 and 35 — and would, therefore, not be performing music live again until at least 2025.

Now the Korean defence ministry has decided BTS will be allowed to participate in what they are calling ‘national level’ events during the group members’ national service.

The Korea Times is also reporting Moon Hong-sik, the acting spokesperson for the South Korean defence ministry, commenting “Our position is that we will provide an opportunity if they wish to participate when there is a national-level event for the public good, or an event designed in light of the national interest.”

Astounding really when you think the Korean government/military is willing to forego tens of millions of dollars of BTS income from around the world for the next couple of years, just so seven more Korean men join the South Korean military, eh?

BTS fans shouldn’t worry too much, though, as it is likely we will still be seeing music from individual BTS members for a while yet.

Several BTS members are currently working on solo projects, and music from these projects is likely to be released while the band members themselves are carrying out their military duty.

If band members enlist at different times too, this could mean several of them are working on solo music projects while others are carrying out their 18-month military duty.

Thus, there may only be a few months in the next two-plus years where no BTS member is releasing new music, or performing live.

Meanwhile, it has already been announced that Jin, the oldest BTS member, will enlist in the military first, followed by other members as their own music projects are completed.

Now watch the official music video for one of BTS’ latest singles ‘Yet To Come’, and remind yourself what you will be forced to miss until 2025.


About Michelle Topham

Brit-American journalist based in Austria, former radio DJ at 97X WOXY, and Founder/CEO of Leo Sigh. I've covered K-drama, K-pop, J-pop and music news for over a decade.