BTS‘ debut New York City concert was cut short due to threats towards the act.
Fans who attended the New York stop of the K-pop boy band’s Episode II: The Red Bullet tour at Best Buy Theater were treated to two hours of performance before the band returned for an encore only to sing one song, then quickly walk off and wave goodbye shortly after 10:00 p.m. Attendees sat confused as the house lights rose and the band’s music played overhead, but did not move until the curtains were closed several minutes after.
During the concert, alleged threats towards a band member surfaced on social media showing people touting handguns threatening BTS leader Rap Monster (real name Kim Namjoon) and using the concert’s official hashtag “#BTSinNY.” See screenshots from the since deactivated @glamgiri and @blueblossom accounts:
The threats were taken seriously enough to cancel a fan meeting that was planned after the show.
Recorded video has surfaced of a staff member on site explaining that there have been “very recent, serious developments concerning the safety of the members of BTS” and that the team “have chosen to take this threat very seriously…because the well being of the artist and the safety of the artist and every single person in this venue is our top priority.” The meet-and-greet, known as a “hi touch” where fans get to give each band member a high-five, was then canceled. See below:
At press time, a BTS rep did not respond to Billboard’s request for comment. Meanwhile, the New York Police Department’s Deputy Commissioner tells Billboard they have no record of their police being involved or called in for the matter, which contradicts circulating reports of police responding to any type of threat.
Members of BTS posted photos and videos thanking New York fans on the band’s official Twitter account.
BTS’ new album The Most Beautiful Moment In Life, Pt. 1 was released in April and is currently at No. 9 on Billboard‘s World Albums chart this week after peaking at No. 2 in May.
— ?????? (@xJungk00k) July 17, 2015
— Claudia ? ? ? (@KpopMx9) July 17, 2015
— BTS (@B4NGTANLIFE) July 17, 2015