* This post is written by Korean Class Massive, one of the Korea Blog’s Worldwide Korea Bloggers.
As part of the Korean Cultural Centre’s “All Eyes on Korea” 100 days festival, there is a series of music and theatrics taking place at The Southbank Centre in London. The line up is a great mix that is sure to appeal to the old, young and families alike! This series is possible thanks to a collaboration between the KCC UK, Korean Culture and Information Service (KOCIS), and the Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. Keep reading to find out what events are on offer……
7.30pm, 23rd July 2012, Queen Elizabeth Hall: Be-Being Korean Masque Music Project presents ‘Yi-Myun-Gong-Jak’
Korean mask culture is an ancient and very interesting art form, and this concert will allow us to experience some of this ancient form of entertainment. The name of the concert ‘Yi-Myun-Gong-Jak’ is in reference to “an activity or action behind the scenes: wire pulling in the background revealing the symbolic power of the mask and the masquerade”. The traditional music that will be played will be made up of both original compositions and reinterpretations of Korean mask plays. The instruments that will be played during this concert include the gayageum, piri and janggu.
7.45pm, 28th July, Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall: GongMyoung presents ‘Walkabout’
GongMyoung (which means Resonance) are a quartet who do contemporary takes on traditional Korean music. As well as these four musicians playing various traditional instruments, they have even invented their own instruments to create new sounds they wanted in their concerts! GongMyong is a much in demand group who have been featured on television and in dramas, so this is a great opportunity to be able to see them perform. Their music is rhythmic and dramatic, and sure to entertain.
7.45pm, 29th July, Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall: Baramgot “A Korean Music Ensemble”
Baramgot are a well known and respected ensemble whose haunting and mystical melodies are beautiful to listen to. Their music is rooted in traditional sounds, but brings in a fresh and modern twist, creating something that is both old but innovative. Listening to their music is almost like being lost in a dream, and will be sure to transport you to another world, leaving you captivated and entertained.
7.30pm, 30th July, Queen Elizabeth Hall: Pansori Project ‘ZA’ presents ‘Sacheon-Ga’
Pansori is a very famous genre of traditional Korean music. It involves one singer and one drummer using a buk drum. In fact, Pansori is so revered, UNESCO named it a ‘Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity’. Impressive! Pansori is sort of like a Korean version of opera, and can be very comical. For this performance, Brecht’s epic drama ‘The Good Woman of Sezchuan’ will be performed in Pansori style. This is definitely one not to miss.
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All these performances are sure to be exciting and very different to what you may have heard before at The Southbank Centre. For those who haven’t had much experience with traditional Korean music before, this series of concerts will provide a great opportunity to sample some of the amazing music Korea has to offer. For those that are already fans of Korean music, this is a chance to see some big names from Korea in London, so don’t miss out! All information about times and ticketing can be found on The Southbank Centre website.