Which BTS Members Speak English?

BTS is the biggest boy band in the world right now. They have fans on every continent and are appearing on American TV more frequently than any K-pop group ever in history.

Although they are famous worldwide, an aspect of BTS that sets them apart from many other globally-popular artists is that they do not often sing in English. In fact, except for a few English words or lines in their songs (and one single done with Steve Aoki), much of their discography is in Korean.

Of course, this has got a lot of people wondering: does any member of BTS speak English? If so, who? Read on below to find out the answer.

Jin, JungKook, RM and Jimin of boy band BTS | Han Myung-Gu/WireImage

Only RM can speak English fluently

RM is the leader and one of the oldest members of BTS. He is the only person in the group that is fluent in English.

He revealed that his English skills have mostly been self-taught and he learned a lot from watching Friends. When he was 12 years old, he also studied in New Zealand for four months.

Something that perhaps also helped RM gain fluency is his impressive brain. He has an IQ of 148 and, when he was on an episode of Korean TV show Running Man back in 2015, it was revealed after taking a test that RM had a real talent for languages.

However, even though he seems to function well in English today, RM shared that earlier in BTS’ career, he was not as confident speaking in English to other people.

“I had to do a short interview with, I think, Reuters from France. I was so nervous,” he said. “I practiced memorizing three sentences for two hours. But, I think that these kinds of interviews make me develop a lot and that helps me.”

Other BTS members can speak English at different levels

Most Korean students learn English for about ten years and K-pop companies also teach their talents English as well, so the other BTS members all can speak and understand English to a degree, though they would not be considered fluent like RM.

However, ever since BTS started gaining worldwide notoriety, everyone has been putting in more effort to improve their English skills.

During a recent live stream, youngest member Jungkook shared that it is his goal to eventually be able to participate in English interviews more. “I’m studying hard. I’m memorizing all the vocabulary,” he said. “Because RM speaks English so well, he takes on the difficult task [of answering questions and translating] for us. But in the future – I’ll say one year – if I continue this study flow, I might be able to help RM by speaking English as well.”

Other languages that BTS members can speak

Aside from English, two other languages that the members of BTS have at least dabbled in are Japanese and Chinese. This is because Japan and China are two of the biggest markets in Asia (and the potential to make money in these countries are bigger than in South Korea), so many K-pop companies also have their talents study Japanese and Chinese.

No BTS member is fluent is Japanese, though as a whole, they can function better in the language than in English since Japanese is much closer to their native Korean. RM is the member who can speak Japanese the best, with V following in closely behind.

The group has promoted extensively in Japan and BTS can reportedly hold their own in interviews and fan-meetings a lot more than they can in America. 

With Chinese, BTS only has at most elementary level skills and they cannot do an interview 100 percent in the language. However, RM is not the person with the best Chinese skills in the group. That title actually goes to oldest member Jin, according to many Chinese fans.

Whether they are fluent in English, Japanese, and Chinese or not, it seems many people appreciate the fact that the guys of BTS seem to put in effort to learn how to communicate with fans in other languages.