One of the eight members of K-pop boy band ATEEZ tested positive for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on the eve of his birthday.
Member San was confirmed to be positive for the virus on July 9, a day before he turned 22 on July 10.
“This is to inform that member San was notified of asymptomatic confirmation of COVID-19 on the afternoon of the 9th,” said KQ Entertainment, ATEEZ’s agency.
The agency said that “on the 8th, we announced that all ATEEZ members were tested negative for COVID-19 and did not have close contacts, so that we will lift preemptive self-quarantine and resume schedule.”
“In response, before participating in today's schedule, member Yunho voluntarily conducted another COVID-19 antigen test (PCR) for everyone's safety and confirmed the final negative result,” it added.
KQ explained that “the rest of the members also conducted COVID-19 antigen test (PCR) today in preparation for future schedules, and member San was notified of asymptomatic confirmation of COVID-19, while Hong Joong, Seong Hwa, Yunho, Yeo Sang, Woo Young and Jong Ho were notified of final negative results.”
“As of this time, ATEEZ will immediately suspend all schedules, and all ATEEZ members and related staff will actively follow the instructions and procedures of the disease control authorities. Once again, we apologize for the trouble caused to our fans, and we will do our best for San to recover quickly.”
San, who was born on July 10, 1999, appeared in a birthday video ad at New York City’s Times Square on July 9.
He won the Whosfan poll on “Who will be celebrated at Times Square on their birthday” for the second week of July.
San got 87.08 percent of the votes followed by Super Junior’s Heechul, 9.17 percent; Purple Kiss’ Swan, 3.66 percent; Drippin’s Cha Junho, 0.07 percent; and April’s Yoon Chaek-yung, 0.01 percent.
South Korea has imposed Level 4 social distancing rule, the highest, in Seoul, Incheon and Gyeonggi province as it recorded a surge in COVID-19 cases. According to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA), 1,316 new COVID-19 cases were reported on July 9, the highest daily record since January 2020.
The increase in cases has also affected the Korean entertainment industry.
Last July 6, it was announced that Kim Minhyuk, a member of K-pop boy band Noir, tested positive for COVID-19.
Korean actress Cha Ji-yeon, who played “The Godmother” in Lee Je-hoon’s drama “Taxi Driver,” tested positive for coronavirus disease (COVID-19), her agency announced on July 4.
Last June 27, Infinite’s Kim Sung-gyu tested positive for COVID-19 after getting vaccinated with Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose Janssen vaccine on June 10.