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00707012
2012.08
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KOREAN

Traditional Arts Performances at Hanok Village/2012 KF Summer Concert for Foreign Residents

The “2012 KF Summer Concert for Foreign Residents” presented a variety of traditional Korean performing arts on June 21-23, at Seoul Namsan Traditional Theater in Namsangol Hanok Village. The annual event provides foreign residents in Korea with an opportunity to enjoy a colorful repertoire of Korean native music, dance and acrobatic arts as well as sample Korean food. Under the theme of “Beautiful Seoul, Amazing Korea,” this year’s concert highlighted pansori (narrative folk songs), a solo piece for the gayageum zither, and dances performed by Rainbow Bridge, Yeajon Dance Company, and U-so, among other groups.

Beating the Heat in Artistic Ambience

The Korea Foundation has been presenting the “KF Summer Concert for Foreign Residents” since 2003 to provide foreign residents in Korea with access to Korea’s traditional culture and arts so they can better understand Korea and its people.

Son Kyung-soon Yeajon Dance Company presents a small drum dance./An hourglass drum dance by Son Kyung-soon Yeajon Dance Company.

Marking its 10th anniversary this year, the concert presented a solo for the gayageum (a 12-string zither) and pansori on June 21; the court dance taepyeongmu (dance of peace) and the salpuri (folk dance of shamanistic origins) on June 22; and a series of outdoor performances, hands-on activities, and a flea arts market on June 23.

Performance by the percussion ensemble U-so. /Beona nori, or bowl spinning./A flea market set up at the outdoor performance venue.

On the final day, the traditional percussion group U-so performed beona nori (spinning hoops and dishes), from the popular repertoire of the namsadang itinerant entertainment troupes, drawing enthusiastic applause from the audience. Beona nori is an acrobatic feat of spinning bowls and dishes on the tips of wooden sticks, as well as on tobacco pipes and knives. Resembling the traditional Chinese dish-spinning, the Korean beona nori incorporates elements of the folk opera changgeuk, with performers engaging in comical banter.

The audience was particularly amazed by the finale, in which the performers spinned dishes using a tobacco pipe balanced on a long wooden stick, tip to tip.

The final day’s program, which began at 10 a.m., also included a musical based on pansori and the pangut percussion ensemble, as well as a streamer dance featuring a 20-yard-long streamer attached to the dancer’s hat, which is part of the traditional repertoire of farmers’ bands.

The flea market offered a variety of hands-on activities and demonstrations, including trying on traditional Korean outfits, or hanbok, and tasting of Korean food items, such as the Schizandra fruit (omija) punch, the sweet rice beverage (sikhye), and a variety of rice cake.

Lee Yong-kyu Freelance Writer

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