Over the weekend, we were able to attend a back to back cup sleeve events here in Qatar. First, the long awaited BTS happening for ARMYs in Qatar entitled “Into The Magic Shop”. And the following day was for the 8th Anniversary celebration of Qatar Carats for their beloved SEVENTEEN. Both events were held at Sobingsu, a popular Korean dessert cafe in Qatar.
Here’s our video coverage for the event (BEST LIFE QATAR Youtube Channel):
What is a cupsleeve event?
A cupsleeve event is usually organized by fans of a certain idol group to celebrate special occasions and milestones like birthdays, anniversaries and other achievements. The fans gather together in cafes or milk tea shops where they order beverages and present their receipts to the event organizer in exchange for freebies, including a cupsleeve (a “zarf” or a specially designed cardboard sleeve placed around the beverage cup), thus the name of the event.
The organizers basically prepare unofficial merchandise to give away or sell during the event and usually, everyone will get a cupsleeve with the picture of their celebrated idols whenever they buy a beverage during the day. This indirectly benefits the owner of the cafes as they can boost sales with these types of events.
In a cupsleeve event, fans get together to enjoy their idol’s music, play trivia games, take selfies at the photobooth, eat, socialize and share their love and stories about their favourite idols, concerts they attended to, and more. In short, this is basically fangirling (or fanboying) in a group, at a cafe. It probably gives a modern twist to the usual meet ups and gathering of idol fans before.
BTS’ Into the Magic Shop
Nowadays, these cupsleeve events have also evolved into something that goes beyond just having fun and fangirling. Immediately after the pandemic, several cupsleeve events were held to stay in touch with fellow fans and get reconnected after a long while.
Recently, a cupsleeve event was held for BTS fans in Qatar to provide a “healing space” for ARMYs who may be struggling from anxiety and sadness after the boys announced that “they were taking a break from making music as a group to pursue solo projects and give way to their military duties”.
Speaking to one of the organizers, Ms. Idda (@hancheolie17 on Instagram) said that the event was created for ARMY’s to feel comforted and healed. It was a one-day event where everyone was able “forget all [their] worries, be a fangirl, and be with everyone or even someone [they] don’t know but share the same interest with and understand each other”, she wrote on her page as a gesture of appreciation to everyone who came and participated.
“Magic Shop” is a track in BTS’ third Korean studio album, Love Yourself: Tear that surrounds a concept on how a fan can look inside their heart and find a magic shop where they can exchange their fears for happiness and find the love all of the members have for them. And this was the inspiration of this cupsleeve event which also became a venue for both new and old fans to meet and bond together after their busy schedules in school and work in Qatar.
BTS is a Grammy-nominated South Korean boy band, whose name is an acronym for Bangtan Sonyeondan (which roughly translates to Bulletproof Boys). Since their debut in 2013, they have topped the charts with their catchy pop music, collaborated with some of the biggest names in the industry and grown one of the largest fanbases, affectionately dubbed ARMY. (with references from: https://people.com/)
But days after dropping a three-disc career retrospective compilation PROOF, the Kpop icons shocked the ARMY nation on Tuesday (June 14, 2022) with the surprise announcement that they are going on an indefinite “hiatus” to allow each man time to focus on solo ventures (with references from: https://www.billboard.com/). Until this moment, ARMYs around the world are still united and hopeful for the group’s successful individual projects, safe completion of their military duties, and their major comeback as a group in 2025.
SEVENTEEN’s 8th Anniversary
The two day cupsleeve events were held one after the other, with fans required to register their attendance on designated timeslots to accommodate the number of expected participants. With the venue which can only accommodate a limited number of people, they were still surprised to see excited fans coming in and out every after slots.
The second day was no different. The crowd is even bigger as it was a weekend in Qatar (Friday). More students were present that explains the energy and excitement in the venue. And since it’s an anniversary gathering, the vibe were more festive and upbeat.
Over the years since their debut in 2015, the 13-member Kpop group Seventeen or SVT has grown up right before fans’ eyes. Seventeen is also a popular K-Pop boy group that consists of 13 members. The name Seventeen is derived from the expression “13 members, 3 units, 1 group” representing how the 13 members are divided into three different units and come together to form one cohesive group. Carat is the official name of their fan cub name was picked through fan votes and was announced on Valentine’s Day, 2016. Their fans are the carats that help Seventeen shine. (with references from https://www.seventeen.com/)