Music Shows Equal Debt? A K-pop Idol Singer’s Reality Exposure Sparks Heated Debate

Credit: Biztribune

VICTON’s Hanse got candid with fans on a fan platform recently, revealing the hidden financial struggles behind K-pop idol singers’ music show appearances.

The singer stated, “Music shows are great, but the expenses don’t match the benefits. It’s not like the old days when second-generation idols would go on music shows and get a huge promotional boost. It costs around 10 million won ($7,800 USD) to promote a song on music shows for a week. But the actual appearance fee for idols is only 50,000 won ($37).”

Credit: VICTON Hanse’s fan platform

He further explained, “To make a comeback, we need to look our best, so we have to pay for stage, hair and makeup, styling, on-site staff meals, snacks, drinks and more. All in all, it can cost up to 20 million won ($15,600 USD).” He emphasized, “And all of that debt falls on the idols.”

Hanse’s revelation comes in response to fans’ requests for more music show appearances. He explained, “There are hardly any idols who make a profit. Only a few groups, like the top headliners of major festivals, make enough money to cover their expenses. For most groups, their contracts end with nothing but debt.” He added, “If you can make it through seven years without disbanding without making any money, then you’re good. The debt you accumulate during your career doesn’t follow you when your contract ends. You can start fresh without any debt.”

Hanse’s candid remarks have sparked mixed reactions among netizens. Some agree with his assessment, commenting, “Thank you for performing on music shows even though that may put you in debt”, “It’s basically paying for promotion”, “Maybe it’s better not to go on music shows since it’s not worth it”,”Now I understand why some groups don’t go on music shows” and “It must be tough these days for idol singers.”

Others express surprise at his remark, saying, “I can’t ask for music show appearances anymore after hearing this”, “Idols should still think about their fans and still perform on music shows”, “It’s sad that they don’t have a stage to create memories with their fans” and “I guess music shows are really just fan service”

>> A Former Reporter Reveals K-pop Idol Groups’ Surprisingly Low Income

Hanse debuted with VICTON in 2016 and left the group in April 2023 due to contract expiration. He is currently pursuing a solo career under the agency D’LIVE MUSIC.

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