The members of BTS are taking a temporary hiatus to serve in the South Korean military. Their participation is mandated by the government, which requires men aged 18 to 35 to join the military for at least 18 months.
The K-pop group’s music label, Big Hit Music, released a statement to confirm the news. “BigHit MUSIC is proud to announce today that the members of BTS are currently moving forward with plans to fulfill their military service,” they wrote. “After the phenomenal concert to support Busan’s bid for the World Expo 2030, and as each individual embarks on solo endeavors, it’s the perfect time and the members of BTS are honored to serve.”
BTS formed in 2010 and debuted their first single, “No More Dream,” in 2013. Since then, they have become an international success and sold over 34 million records. Their hit singles, “Butter, and “Dynamite,” have topped pop music charts, and most recently, they released their ninth album, Proof.
According to their label, the band has agreed to pause their careers and join the army to “respect the needs of the country.” The process is a timely one, but they might be able to squeeze in a couple of performances while working for the military. CNN reported that South Korea’s defense minister previously said BTS could potentially perform overseas, but that has not been confirmed by their label.
In the meantime, the band's eldest member, Jin is preparing to leave. He was able to delay deployment after South Korea’s parliament passed a bill in 2020 that allows pop stars to defer their service until they turn 30. Now at 29 years old, he is scheduled to depart after his solo release wraps up this month. The other band members — Sug, J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V, and Jungkook — will do the same based on their own respective schedules.
Thankfully, BTS plans to reunite in a few years. As stated by their label, “Both the company and members of BTS are looking forward to reconvening as a group again around 2025 following their service commitment.”