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BTS’ ‘The City’ in Las Vegas connects concert-city

Hybe to continue the project as a new business model around the world

The streets of Las Vegas Strip are colored in purple in celebration of “BTS Permission to Dance the City - Las Vegas” project on April 7. (Hybe)
The streets of Las Vegas Strip are colored in purple in celebration of “BTS Permission to Dance the City - Las Vegas” project on April 7. (Hybe)
Hybe’s two-week project to turn Las Vegas into a theme park for K-pop band BTS fans ended Sunday, and now the company is looking to continue the project in other locations with more of its artists.

“BTS Permission to Dance the City - Las Vegas,” in short, “The City,” had turned Las Vegas into an expansive and immersive field of festival for fans visiting the city for BTS’ concerts. Between April 5-17, when the act held four live concerts in Allegiant Stadium, BTS-themed events took place all over the area stretching from the Las Vegas Strip to the concert venue.

On the night of April 7, LVCVA welcomed BTS and their fans by turning on a massive neon sign reading “Borahaegas” (a word putting together Las Vegas and “boraehae,” a word used by BTS fans to mean “I love you”) and flushing the streets in purple lights.

The highlight of the project was the world-famous Bellagio water shows, during which the band’s hit songs “Dynamite” and “Butter” played. MGM Resort International’s data showed that some 200,000 onlookers came to watch the fountain shows, Hybe said.

The company added that some 70,000 people had found the experimental pop-up store, a special space it had prepared for fans to not just purchase items but to get involved and play together. The items also sold strongly, with over 30,000 items of the limited edition “City Signature” merchandise being sold, and the official concert-themed items marking sales of around 93,000 items.

The special photo exhibition, titled “Behind The Stage: Permission To Dance,” which shows unreleased pictures of the septet below the stage and while preparing for the tour, attracted some 44,000 visitors. The number is close to 45,000 visitors that had flocked to the world’s largest tech show, CES, which also took place in Las Vegas in March.


BTS members perform during “Permission to Dance On Stage -- Las Vegas” concert taking place at the Allegiant Stadium on April 9. (Big Hit Music/Hybe)
BTS members perform during “Permission to Dance On Stage -- Las Vegas” concert taking place at the Allegiant Stadium on April 9. (Big Hit Music/Hybe)

“The City” project also set the internet abuzz. According to Hybe, during the two weeks when the project had taken place in Las Vegas, the official Twitter account of the city had changed to “Borahaegas,” while some 9.24 million hashtags related to the project were produced in overall. From April 1 until the project ended Sunday, “#Lasvegas” was mentioned some 8.5 million times, up by a whopping 1,300 percent from the same period last year.

Hybe explained “The City” project has marked a successful start in its extension of fan experience into a broader field of “entertainment lifestyle,” which includes the accommodation, food, beverages and more.

The multi-label company plans to continue the project in the future, developing a modularized system that could be applied differently according to the artists, their fandoms and the cities in which the concerts are held.

“‘The City’ project is a representation of Hybe’s philosophy, to roll out novel fan experiences and expand the industry beyond its limits to achieve this, through a concert business, and it adds the value that the start of such successful new business model has taken place in Las Vegas, the entertainment capital of the world,” Hybe said, adding, “Wherever the artists and fandoms meet, ‘The City’ project is always possible.”



By Choi Ji-won (jwc@heraldcorp.com)
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