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SOAS Workshop: The Diversity and Distinctiveness of Korean Music and Dance

daegum playerTwo dates for your diary. The Friday and Saturday after Easter there’s a one and a half day symposium at SOAS on the varied aspects of Korean music. Yes, there’ll be a session on K-pop too, plus a concert of traditional music on the Friday evening.

There’s an ambitious attempt to have one of the talks given via Skype. Definitely asking for trouble: I’ve never yet been to a technology-dependent talk which hasn’t had a glitch somewhere.

Admission is free and no booking is required. It’s a great way to get introduced to genres of music you might not be familiar with already.

Past, Present and Future: The Diversity and Distinctiveness of Korean Music and Dance

The list of speakers are confirmed in the programme

Date: 13 April 2012, 2:00 PM to 14 April 2012 5:00 PM
Venue: Russell Square, College Buildings
Room: Khalili Lecture Theatre

Britain has a curious affinity for Korean music and dance that began with the Durham Oriental Music Festival in the 1970s. This symposium brings back together many of those who have studied in Britain as well as current researchers. Papers will demonstrate the diversity and distinctiveness of Korean music and dance, exploring vocal and percussion, composition and dance, and K-pop, both exploring what has been achieved and looking towards the future of Korean music in our globalized world.

Joshua Pilzer
Joshua Pilzer

The keynote presentation will be given by Professor Joshua Pilzer, of the University of Toronto, who will introduce his new Oxford University Press book on the music of the Korean ‘comfort women’ – women forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese during the Pacific War. Professor Robert Provine, formerly of the University of Durham and now based at the University of Maryland, will join us by Skype to introduce us to the earliest recordings of Korean music.

Presentations, duly reworked, will be published as a volume of working papers, to be lodged on the SOAS website. In addition, the papers on SamulNori will form part of a collection that will subsequently be published through Queensland Conservatorium, Griffith University, as part of the Australia Research Council-funded project ‘Sustainable Futures’, and the papers on Korean dance will form part of a co-written book currently in production by Seo, Kim and Howard (the workshop will also be filmed for inclusion on the website).

Provisional Programme*

Date/Time Description
Friday, 13 April 2012
14:00-15:30 VOCAL MUSIC: from literati to opera

To include:

  • SungHee Park (Durham)
  • Dorothea Suh (Hamburg)
  • Ji Hae Gu (Royal Holloway, University of London)
16:00-17:00 SAMULNORI

To include:

  • Simon Mills (Durham)
  • Nathan Hesselink (University of British Columbia)
  • Nami Morris (Cambridge)

Special Presentation by Robert C. Provine (University of Maryland, College Park)


Demonstrating Korean dance techniques Un Mi Kim (Hanyang University, Seoul)

19:00 CONCERT: Zithers, flutes and drums

  • Yu Ji-young
  • Shin Ju-hee
  • Nami Morris
  • Hyelim Kim
  • Keith Howard

Kayagŭm zither, taegŭm flute, changgo drum, and Chindo puk ch’um drum dance

Saturday, 14 April 2012
9:00-10:30 NEW MUSIC

To include:

  • Gyewon Byeon (Korean National University of Education)
  • Hyelim Kim (SOAS)
  • Hyunseok Kwon (SOAS, University of London)
11:00-12:30 DANCE

To include:

  • Seo Jung Rock (SOAS, University of London)
  • Kim Chaehyeon (Korean National University of the Arts)
  • Keith Howard (SOAS, University of London)

Professor Joshua Pilzer (University of Toronto)

Song in the Lives of Korean Survivors of the Japanese “Comfort Women”

15:00-17:00 K-POP

To include:

  • Rowan Pease (China Quarterly)
  • Sung-Woo Park (Goldsmiths College, University of London)
  • Sang-Yeon Sung (University of Vienna)
  • Um Hye-kyung (Liverpool)
  • and more!

Organiser: Centres & Programmes Office
Contact email: [email protected]
Contact Tel: 020 7898 4892/3

(automatically generated) Read LKL’s review of this event here.

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