BTS members RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V and Jungkook on Tuesday announced they are taking a “hiatus” to focus on solo pursuits. The members dropped the news during their streamed annual Festa dinner, part of a celebration that marks their anniversary as a group. In the hour-long video, the members also drank, joked and reflected on their history together. J-Hope is slated to headline Chicago’s Lollapalooza on his own later this summer. (Also Read | Jimin says BTS wants to be with ARMY for as long as possible: ‘Will try to repay you by showing even better sides of us’)
RM, leader of the group, 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 from other groups 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. Right now when we’re at our best I feel like I should be contributing something to the world, but I don’t know what that is,” RM said.
Suga said, “It’s not like we’re disbanding. We should live doing what we want to do. We’ll probably die when we reach 100 and we can’t be BTS until then, I don’t think that’s an easy feat to achieve. Writing lyrics is the hardest. What message do we want to give? Nothing comes out anymore.” J-Hope said that the time apart would be healthy for the group and urged fans not to view the development as negative. “This is also a new direction for us as a company, the attitude towards solo projects has changed,” he said. J-Hope said that “change is what we need right now” but offered hope for the group’s return by adding “it’s important for BTS to start our second chapter.”
Jimin said the members are “slowly trying to figure things out now” and that “we’re starting to think about what kind of artists we each want to be remembered by our fans.” “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.” Jungkook said, “I promise we will return someday, more mature than now. Till then, we ask for your blessing.”
By the end of the dinner, several of the members grew tearful as they voiced gratitude for their fandom ARMY. RM, J-Hope, and Jimin were all seen wiping tears. Reacting to the news, a fan said, “BTS will be on hiatus. But will keep breaking records. I know something is coming. This is just the beginning. Maybe not as a group but as a soloist.” “BTS hiatus, they deserve all the love in the world. Thank you, BTS for being there for me. Will forever be ARMY and wait for you,” said another fan.
A person also tweeted, “I really hope they know they never have to be sorry or guilty to us for wanting to be better artists, better people. Please know that.” “It’s a very special thing to have them be confident enough to trust us so they can be as vulnerable as they want, make whatever decision they want and know we will understand them and be here for them. It truly is Bangtan and ARMY forever,” read a comment.
BTS has been on hiatus before, first in 2019 and later in December 2021. The earlier hiatus was only for a few weeks. The news comes just days after the group released Proof, an anthology album.