KTMF is not just a Korean event anymore

May 5, 2014

More and more non-Korean fans are showing up at the Korea Times Music Festival. (Korea Times Los Angeles staff)

As thousands of fans of all ages, ethnicities and fandoms piled into the Hollywood Bowl on Saturday, it became clearer than ever that Korean music is not just for Koreans anymore — it’s for everyone.

Attendees of The Korea Times’ Music Festival, who filled the 20,000-seat venue Saturday night, included not just California residents but out-of-state fans from as far away as Florida, Illinois and Texas who came to see their favorite singers perform live.

The festival, which has now run for 12 years, kicked off on the 100th anniversary of Korean immigration to the U.S. in 2003 and has become the longest-running Korean music festival in the states.

Crowds, which started largely as Korean families, have transformed into a diverse set as more and more people discover K-pop through the Internet on sites like YouTube and Facebook.

One 27-year-old fan traveled with his mother, a K-pop lover, from Florida as a Mother’s Day gift. He said bringing her to the Hollywood Bowl concert seemed like the perfect present.

Maria Paulus, an 18-year-old college student who came to support EXO, said she started liking K-pop when she saw a classmate performing a Big Bang dance five years ago.

“I think it’s interesting because we’ve come to appreciate a type of music that isn’t in our language, but you can still enjoy it and have fun with it,” she said.


Crowds, which started as Korean families, have transformed into a diverse set. (Park Sang-hyuk)


  1. A-Chan

    May 5, 2014 at 5:46 PM

    Oh crap that’s me. o_o;;;; This is super embarassing.

    Super fun concert! Thanks for putting it on as always Korea Times!

  2. Tapanda

    May 5, 2014 at 5:53 PM

    Oh that’s also me, wish I wore something cuter…
    It was an amazing concert, I’ll be sure to come back again!