Dubai: BTS - this band of floppy-haired songsters was the reason that one in every 13 foreign tourists visited South Korea in 2017, the Hyundai Research Institute said in December last year.
Known for their boyish good looks and meticulously choreographed dance moves, BTS - short for Bangtan Sonyeondan, which translates as Bulletproof Boy Scouts - have become one of South Korea's best-known and most valuable musical exports.
On Wednesday, the group posted a video on Twitter commemorating their years together kicking off an online celebration of the anniversary of their debut performance. Up until the time of publishing, #6yearswithourhomebts is trending worldwide and is the top hashtag trend in the UAE as well.
The group has also responded to the overwhelming response and celebration of fans - who are called the Army - by posting another video. One of the band members Jimin, whose real name is Park Ji-min, uploaded a touching video on their twitter page featuring memories from the group’s tour, set to BTS’s track “Answer: Love Myself.”
“Thank you for wishing us a happy birthday,” he wrote in the tweet. “I prepared a small gift too.” He added at the end of the video: “Thank u and I’ll never forget it.”
At the time of publishing, the hashtag was used in 3 million tweets worldwide.
A few tweets
Kpop in Dubai
Samar Khouri, Special to tabloid!
K-Pop was the centre of conversation in 2018. There were multiple breakthrough moments and a spike in attention to Korean music in the highly-competitive American market. Record-breaking group BTS no doubt opened doors for Korean artists and played a role in K-Pop’s rise as a recognised industry globally this year.
While on the other side of the world, the Korean pop phenomenon’s appeal has expanded to a new and existing audience in the UAE and it has seen moderate growth in 2018. Even K-Pop boy group NCT 127 mentioned ‘Dubai’ in the English version of their 2018 track ‘Regular’, months after their performance in the city this year.
K-Pop has steadily attracted fans locally and became a mainstay of the ‘Korean Wave’ or ‘Hallyu’, which refers to the growing popularity of Korean pop culture.
The Middle East is a new and emerging market and K-Pop groups have been seen carving their place in the Emirates.
Hundreds of fans witnessed a historic moment in Dubai in January, when one of South Korea’s most popular boy bands Exo landed in the city to watch the premiere of their Korean-language track ‘Power’ added to The Dubai Fountain’s playlist.
Due to popular demand, the choreographed fountain system’s first K-Pop song was played on three separate occasions this past year.
- With inputs from AFP