Idols Reveal The Not-So-Glamorous Reality Of K-Pop Awards Shows

Things are much less luxurious than you might think!

While K-Pop idols always dazzle on stage at awards shows, the situation backstage is a lot less glamorous than you might have assumed…

If you’ve ever seen what international awards shows look like behind the scenes, you know that the backstage areas are often exquisitely decorated. At this year’s Oscars, for example, winners and guests got to relax in a gorgeous green room that lived up to its name. Designed by Rolex, the Academy Awards waiting room and bar area were adorned with emerald-green glass leaves and furnished with plush green seating.

| Rolex

In K-Pop, however, things are a little different. In recent behind-the-scenes footage from the 2023 Hanteo Music Awards, several groups showed off their waiting areas — and you may be surprised to see what they look like.

In Kep1er’s latest “Kep1us” video, for example, Youngeun showed the cameras where her members wait when they’re not in the awards hall. Far from the glitz of the Oscars, the waiting rooms aren’t “rooms” at all. Instead, artists are separated by sheets tied to metal frames.

| Kep1er/YouTube

Inside their makeshift rooms, the members have a sheet-covered table where they can stash their bags, along with plastic chairs to rest on.

| Kep1er/YouTube

As you can see, dozens of these tents are set up in close proximity to each other for each artist attending.

| Kep1er/YouTube

Thankfully, as seen in fromis_9’s “FM” behind video, there’s just about enough space for the artists to hang their coats and practice their choreography.

| fromis_9/YouTube

Judging by VERIVERY’s “VE:HIND” vlog, the backstage setup seems to be the same for all artists, though some rearrange their racks and tables differently. Here, you can see just how small the waiting space is for bigger groups, along with the tiny full length mirror provided to check your looks.


While some awards show venues are definitely better than others, in general, waiting rooms for K-Pop idols are rarely as fancy as their international counterparts. SEVENTEEN, for example, were seen lying down on makeshift beds with pouches and towels for pillows at the 2023 Golden Disk Awards.


All that being said, while idols may not always get the star treatment they deserve, they always take it in their stride without complaint. And, in comparison to the treatment they’ve had at some ceremonies, these waiting rooms are practically lavish. Back in 2020, for example, netizens were outraged to see that idols were left waiting in a cold parking lot at the MAMA Awards getting their makeup touched up in cars — all while actors got to hang out in gold-curtained waiting rooms.

Netizens React To The Stark Contrast Of The “Waiting Rooms” Between The Actors Versus Singers At The 2020 MAMA