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The prolonged coronavirus pandemic has been looming over the K-Pop industry, bringing it to a standstill for an uncertain amount of time. Many homeland and overseas (offline) events and concerts have either been cancelled or suspended while weekly TV shows have continued to air without a live audience. The ‘K-Pop Super Concert’ and the ‘Music Bank in Dubai’ were also ultimately postponed in light of the virus. Despite this, K-Pop artists are promoting social distancing and doing what they can to keep active, whether it’s on social media, online platforms or TV shows. Here’s what they’ve been up to...
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Joining live-streaming series and coronavirus relief events: Alongside a star-studded line-up last week, BTS joined James Corden’s special self-quarantine edition, Homefest: James Corden’s Late Late Show Special, from their own dance studio in South Korea. On March 28, groups Monsta X, Stray Kids, and (G) I-DLE were among other names from various entertainment fields to have participated in online streaming platform Twitch’s 12-hourlivestream concert event, Stream Aid 2020, to raise money for global coronavirus relief. Boy group Monsta X will also perform on MTV’s upcoming at-home live stream series, Unplugged at Home.
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Live-streaming concerts and K-Pop-related events: Due to the cancellation of scheduled concerts, promotional events, and fan meetups, K-Pop acts have opted to go online and interact with fans as much as possible. Golden Child live-streamed their concert Future and Past worldwide on YouTube for their fans in isolation. Additionally, artists have also held media showcases and live performances via social media. Girl groups Mamamoo and April, duo B. O. Y, and soloist Kim Jae-hwan are set to perform in a free benefit live-stream concert, Live K Concert, on April 11 without an audience in Seoul. Proceeds from viewer donations will go towards humanitarian non-governmental organisation GoodNeighbors.
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Promoting social distancing with logo changes and banners: Aimed at promoting social distancing, Pledis Entertainments’ boy groups Seventeen and Nu’est creatively shared online new, revamped versions of their existing logos as well as social media banners.
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Offering masks and monetary assistance to Korean charities and NGOs: Numerous K-Pop artists like IU, Apink’s Son Na-eun, Astro’s Cha Eun-woo, Kang Daniel, BTS’ Suga, Girls’ Generation’s Yoona, Zico and more have offered masks or donated generously to combat the COVID-19 outbreak taking over their country.
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Preparing for comebacks and debuts: March saw a few notable names like NCT 127, ITZY, Victon, Kang Daniel, and Exo’s Suho release new music.
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Launching social media channels and sharing content : JYP Entertainment girl group Twice and soloist Soyou have launched a TikTok and YouTube channel, respectively. Members of K-Pop group Seventeen have also been gifting fans with their talents, such as covering songs from other artists.