BUSAN -- K-pop sensation BTS has covered Busan in a shade of purple. The boy band’s fandom, Army, from all over the world has flocked to the country’s second-largest city in unison to feel the festive vibes on the day of the septet’s concert, "BTS 'Yet to Come' in Busan" on Saturday.
The music event was planned to support and promote Busan’s bid to host the 2030 World Expo. While it was scheduled to take place at 6 p.m. at the Asiad Main Stadium, tens of thousands of concertgoers and visitors had already gathered from early in the morning. They wore tints of purple and came equipped with other BTS-inspired apparel, from clothes to hats, bags, masks and even dyed hair.
Electronic display boards and banners with the bandmates’ faces lined the area around the venue. Tour buses rented by groups of fans were head to tail. Event booths crowded around the concert venue. Police and the Marine Corps were also stationed to provide assistance.
Among the many foreign visitors was Marisa, 25, who lives in Texas and said she planned a vacation for the BTS event. Introducing herself as a fan since 2018, she flew to Korea eight days ago. “This is my first time visiting Busan," she said, explaining she was unable to get a ticket after the booking site crashed. "I came here to enjoy the event.”
Families were also seen together at the scene. A 14-year-old, surnamed Um, came from Seoul early in the morning with her parents to see her favorite band member, Suga, at the concert. A man in his 20s traveled to Busan from Seoul with his fan girlfriend. She was only lucky enough to get a single concert ticket, but said about the misfortune of spectating solo: “Fans do not care.”
It was a special event for locals as well. A taxi driver in his 50s said he was surprised to see that many people from around the globe gathered in the city to see BTS. In the meantime, he expressed his strong desire for the concert to add momentum for the city to host the upcoming World Expo, since it would further contribute to the port city’s development in the future.
“Yet to Come” invited some 100,000 spectators to the Asiad Main Stadium at the in-person concert venue and Live Play screening areas near the Busan Port Facilities Management Center and Haeundae Beach. The two-hour concert was also livestreamed via Weverse and broadcast by JTBC.
As dusk faded to dark, Haeundae Beach became another concert venue for BTS fans and residents alike. Although only 2,000 people were allowed to reserve seats, more people, including local families and senior citizens were able to enjoy the livestream via a big screen. The ample sounds and lights raised the vividness and colored the beach purple.
In the meantime, tech giant Kakao suffered a service malfunction in the late afternoon due to a fire at a data center, with services such as mobile messenger KakaoTalk and its taxi-hailing application Kakao T facing disruptions, complicating the situation for concertgoers as they departed.
As part of a lighting event titled “Borahae Busan,” the city government launched a 15-minute drone show at the beach Gwangalli at 9 p.m. Drones carrying lights were on display showcasing the bandmates’ faces in purple. "Borahae," or "I purple you" is a term used by BTS and its global fandom in place of "I love you."