BTS Is Going on Hiatus Amidst a “Rough Patch”

BTS, which just announced a hiatus, at the 2022 Grammy Awards
Photo by Amy Sussman via Getty Images

Pour one out for the BTS Army, because they just received some devastating news. On Monday night, the seven members of BTS announced that they’re taking an extended break for the first time in the nine years since they formed the ultra-popular K-pop group. Suga, Jin, J-Hope, RM, V, Jungkook, and Jimin made it official at the latest FESTA dinner, a yearly celebration held on the anniversary of their debut. The plan is to pursue their solo careers, then eventually come back together as one. “I think now we’re starting to think about what kind of artists we each want to be remembered by our fans,” Jimin said. “I think that’s why we’re going through a rough patch right now, we’re trying to find our identity and that’s an exhausting and long process.”

RM got particularly candid about why BTS is taking a break, admitting that he “didn’t know what kind of group we were anymore” and was getting a bit too tired to find out. “I always thought that BTS was different from other groups, but the problem with K-pop and the whole idol system is that they don’t give you time to mature,” he continued. “You have to keep producing music and keep doing something.” Jennie of Blackpink, another hugely successful K-pop group, can attest to that: She recently opened up about the toll that the relentless work that comes with being a South Korean megastar has taken on her health. Like BTS, she resolved to stick with her bandmates but temporarily focus on her solo career.

The news of BTS’s hiatus comes at a time when they couldn’t be more popular. For proof that they’ve had full success with breaking into the American market, look no further than the fact that President Joe Biden recently invited them to the White House to hear what they had to say about anti-Asian racism. And while they’re temporarily parting with the Army, they’ve left them with an excellent parting gift: Their newly released album, Proof, features no less than 48 songs.

Update 6/16/22, 11:00 a.m.: Representatives for BTS claim that the English translation of “hiatus” was inaccurate, telling TMZ “To be clear, they are not on hiatus but will take time to explore some solo projects at this time and remain active in various different formats.” However, Jungkook most definitely made it sound like they were indeed going on hiatus: “We’re each going to take some time to have fun and experience lots of things. We promise we will return someday even more mature than we are now.”