In April, BTS, the mega-popular K-pop band, announced a world tour that include six North American cities -- including Fort Worth, where tickets for two September shows at the Fort Worth Convention Center quickly sold out.
So obviously there is an audience for this show. One big enough to sell out two shows that, with BTS' stage configuration, will have about 11,000 seats that screaming fans probably won't bother to sit in for very long.
Which raises the question: Why, out of five U.S. cities, was Fort Worth one that got the nod for the show?
More specifically, why the convention center, which has a storied concert history -- the Rolling Stones, U2 and Elvis all played there back in the day -- but is not as big a venue as American Airlines Center in Dallas or AT&T Stadium in Arlington?
And why Fort Worth instead of, say, Houston or Austin?
"Because we're awesome," says Joy Bradley, national sales manager for the Fort Worth Convention Center, says with a laugh, before saying that she didn't have the answers. And so far, we haven't been able to get in touch with anyone at promoter AEG Presents who can tell us. Or anyone from BTS' record label. Or from Big Hit Entertainment, which handles BTS bookings.
Here's what is clear: People who want to see BTS really want to see BTS. There have been reports of people from Florida, Louisiana, Mexico and even Australia buying tickets to the Fort Worth show.
Although tickets for the Sept. 15-16 shows sold out fast, there are still tickets available via ticket-exchange sites such as StubHub -- where at nearly 4 p.m. Friday, they were ranging from $635 to a mind-boggling $6,700. Tickets on similar sites were also easily clearing the thousand-dollar mark in certain cases.
BTS previously played DFW in 2015, when the group, also known as the Bangtan Boys, brought its "BTS Live Trilogy Episode II: The Red Bullet" tour to Verizon Theatre in Grand Prairie. Those shows also quickly sold out, and BTS' exposure and fan base has only expanded since then, with the group making U.S. TV appearances on "Ellen," "Jimmy Kimmel Live!," "The Late Late Show with James Corden" and an upcoming appearance on "The Billboard Music Awards," scheduled for May 20. The upcoming Fort Worth show got some extra attention when a death threat against one of the BTS members surfaced on Twitter.
Timing may be one of the reasons Fort Worth got the show.
The Fort Worth dates land between a Sept. 12 show in Oakland and three dates in Hamilton, Ontario, beginning Sept. 20. The night of Sept. 16, American Airlines Center is sewn up with the "Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience," and the Dallas Cowboys play the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium. But Starplex -- excuse us, Dos Equis Pavilion -- doesn't have anything scheduled that night.
BTS is not the only K-pop band playing the Fort Worth Convention Center this year: Wanna One, a South Korean boy band, is scheduled to play there at 8 p.m. June 26. Tickets for that show are still available via AXS. And at $120-$220, they're not cheap, either.
Other Korean groups coming to DFW include Monsta X, scheduled for July 27 at Verizon Theatre in Grand Prairie; and Hyukoh, described as a Korean indie band, scheduled to play Sept. 13 at Trees in Dallas.