The annual performance at the Korean Cultural Centre by the UK Korean Artists Association is becoming something of an institution. This year it is accompanied for the first time by a one-week exhibition of works by some of their visual artists.
It has always been a popular event, but this year with both visual and performing artists wanting to bring guests unfortunately some audience members had to be turned away, and still there were too many to fit into the KCC’s multi-purpose space. The noise from outside the space was rather distracting to the fortunate audience inside – particularly during the performances which required a bit of hush: Park Hye-kyung’s poetry or Park Sunnee’s dance – which had quiet, improvised musical backing from percussion and daegeum.
It was good to see both familiar performers and some new faces. Folk singer and kayageum player Choi Seo-young, new to the KAA this year, grabbed the audience with a performance of the Jindo Arirang – very familiar to fans of Im Kwon-taek’s film Sopyeonje, while Hwang Dong-yoon performed a fusion number from the same film’s soundtrack.
Jung Ji-eun and Jeon Sung-min played two of their own compositions from their recently released CDs, while another newcomer, Choi Jeung-hyun, resplendent in a tunic by Lee Sang-beom, thrilled us with her energetic drum-playing. Guest performer Kim Bohae sang some contemporary folk-songs as well as a number from Carmen.
With stage design by Kim Min-kyung and continuity announcement by Lee Ji-eun, the evening presented a wide variety of talents from London’s resident Korean performers.
All photos courtesy of and © Lee Hyung-wook of The East