At the Grammys, BTS didn’t need a trophy to shine

If the group BTS did not win the trophy for which it was nominated at the Grammy Awards, its performance on stage caused a sensation.

They didn’t win the Grammys they were nominated for, but they were the seven members of BTS who were the talk of the town Sunday night in Las Vegas. The South Koreans, who were competing in the category of group or duo of the year, offered the public and viewers an unprecedented performance of their hit “Butter”. Taking the traits of robbers, they ignited the room, restoring its grandeur to a ceremony which once marked history by its stars present on stage. But in recent years, the Grammy Awards have lost their splendor. Accused of racism, xenophobia and corruption – the singer The Weeknd announced last year that he would now boycott the event – ​​the Academy is struggling to attract crowds and superstars. Faced with falling audiences and controversies, she had promised change, ensuring to be more inclusive, especially with artists of color. And what better way to get people talking about the ceremony than by inviting the hottest band of the moment, described in the latest issue of “Time” magazine as “Princes of World Pop”, whose every appearance is followed and shared by millions of fans around the world.

BTS on stage Sunday night at the Grammy Awards.

© REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

For weeks, the Grammys had been promoting BTS’s visit, announcing that they would have the biggest stage of the evening, increasing the pressure from fans who nevertheless kept in mind the bitter memory of the past year. (they had been nominated for the first time but had not won and their performance had been broadcast at the very end of the program). The hope was all the greater this Sunday as the category in which they were named, which last year had been content to be broadcast during a pre-ceremony, had been moved this time to the end of the official evening. Enough to ensure that the fans of the group, whose passion and commitment is well established, stay until the end. But it was finally Doja Cat and SZA who left with the prize, leaving, again, a funny impression, while the signals seemed to be in favor of BTS. But as soon as the nominations were announced, many pointed out that the group seemed to have been snubbed. While “Butter” was ranked number one on the Top 100 in the United States for 10 weeks, the title had not appeared in any major category, not even that of song of the year. And faced with the incredible show they gave on Sunday evening, there is no doubt that he deserved his place among the nominees.

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Jungkook arrives by air for BTS' performance on Sunday night at the Grammy Awards.

Jungkook arrives by air for BTS’ performance on Sunday night at the Grammy Awards.

© Rob Latour/Shutterstock/SIPA

The Grammys Academy can be all the more grateful that just hours before the party, the seven members weren’t even sure they could perform together. Two of them – Jungkook and J-Hope – have barely recovered from Covid-19 and a third – Jin – is in a cast after injuring his hand. But it took them one rehearsal to figure out what to do. And the public saw nothing but fire. If the Grammys seem to have a hard time considering BTS as multi-award-winning artists in the world, who will soon celebrate their 10-year career, preferring to perpetuate the cliché image of a boyband phenomenon phenomenon, the guests present Sunday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena gave the group a standing ovation.

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BTS and the host of the evening, Trevor Noah.

BTS and the host of the evening, Trevor Noah.

© Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY/Sipa/SIPA

“Billboard”, which is however often acerbic when it comes to BTS, also estimated in an article that their performance was the best of the evening. “Those guys just sitting around talking and laughing together are better than most musical performances,” Rolling Stone magazine tweeted. The stars are also not mistaken since Lady Gaga to Donatella Versace via the conductor Jon Baptiste – big winner of the evening –, all were seen discussing and taking photos with them.

Lady Gaga and V at the Grammy Awards.

Lady Gaga and V at the Grammy Awards.

© Kevin Mazur/Getty Image

In an American show business where scandals have trumped quality, audiences are slowly drifting away from award ceremonies, and a slap in the face at the Oscars ousts all the winners of a night, BTS and his meticulous and creative show reminded us of what should really count: the pleasure of the stage and of sharing. And so much for the defeat. In a few days, the seven boys are preparing to give four sold-out concerts at the Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. And as a full stadium is not enough for them, the MGM Grand Garden Arena where the Grammys were held on Sunday will serve as a branch of the group which will broadcast its show live on a giant screen. Better still, the whole city of Vegas will soon take on the colors of BTS. Exhibitions, shows on the Strip, hotel rooms and themed meals are planned to welcome ARMY (the name of the group’s fans). In 2013, when they debuted, Jungkook, then very young, had shared his dream: “I want to become a singer who touches people with his voice and a singer who makes people proud, without hesitation, a singer who makes them say without being embarrassed, “I’m a BTS fan.” On Sunday, along with those he considers his six brothers, he was sure to get his wish, making the eyes of millions of ARMYs shine across the world. And they didn’t need a Grammy for that.

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