The presidential office announced on Friday that there would not be a joint concert of K-pop girl group Blackpink and American pop star Lady Gaga during President Yoon Suk Yeol's upcoming state visit to the United States.
In a written statement, the office clarified that the performance being reported in the media is not included in the president's official schedule for his visit to the United States. The statement did not provide any further explanation for the decision.
The announcement came amid speculations that Yoon’s security advisor and two secretaries related to diplomacy tendered their resignations due to a protocol blunder ahead of the upcoming summit between South Korea and the US in April.
According to previous reports, US first lady Jill Biden, who has an interest in Korean culture, suggested a joint performance by K-pop girl group Blackpink and American pop star Lady Gaga for a state dinner during the Korea-US summit. However, it appears the proposal was not properly communicated to President Yoon, resulting in the US government reportedly demanding a response from the South Korean government on several occasions due to a lack of feedback from the presidential office.
On Friday, fresh reports came from media outlets that the US suggested that Korea bear the cost for the performance. The cost of this concert is approximated to be around $2 million to $3 million.