South Korea boy band BTS cancels April Seoul concert on coronavirus concerns

FILE PHOTO: Members of K-Pop band, BTS appear on ABC’s ‘Good Morning America’ show in Central Park in New York City, U.S., May 15, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korean boy band BTS canceled its scheduled April concert in Seoul, amid growing concerns of the new coronavirus outbreak, its music label, Big Hit Entertainment, said on Friday.

“The current global coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has made it impossible at this time to predict the scale of the outbreak during the dates of the concert in April,” Big Hit said in a statement.

Four shows in Seoul’s Olympic Stadium on April 11, 12, 18 and 19 were scheduled to lead a “MAP OF THE SOUL TOUR”, in which the seven-member boy band was due to visit 17 cities through September including Los Angeles, Washington D.C., London and Tokyo.

The label said reserved tickets will be refunded in full.

The cancellation comes after Big Hit chose JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N), NH Investment & Securities Co Ltd (005940.KS) and others to handle its initial public offering (IPO), according to media reports. Concerts, along with merchandise sold at concerts, are one of the major revenue sources for management agencies.

South Korea reported 256 new coronavirus cases on Friday, bringing the country’s total to 2,022 and 13 deaths.

The coronavirus originated in China before spreading to another 44 countries.

Reporting by Sangmi Cha; Additional reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Christopher Cushing

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