Neverland: Holland’s ground-breaking K-pop debut in context

Dr Colette Balmain discusses the controversial debut MV from Korea’s “first openly gay” KPOP idol. “Never lose self-esteem and be confident” (Holland, 2018) On 22st January 2018, at exactly midnight KST, Holland released his debut single and MV “Neverland”.  Since its release, “Neverland” has racked up over 6 million views on YouTube and Holland has […]

Korea Through My Queer Eyes: a talk with Heezy Yang

Coming up next week, a very informal talk session with South Korean artist and activist Heezy Yang (a.k.a. Hurricane Kimchi). Korea Through My Queer Eyes 21 February at 19:30–21:00 G3, SOAS The topics will include Seoul Pride, Military Service, Queer Youth, Parents and Family, Night Life, Drag Culture, Art & Entertainment! About Heezy Yang Heezy […]

Photography exhibition: Gay Men And Pants

Late notice of an exhibition by South Korean artist, performer and LBGT activist Heezy Yang aka Hurricane Kimchi: Gay Men And Pants New Bloomsbury Set | The Basement | 76 Marchmont Street | London WC1N 1AG 15-16 February 2018 Bar opening hours 4pm – 11.30pm “Underwear as medium – taking an intimate look at queer lives in […]

In memory of Hwang Byung-ki

In memory of the great man, here’s a video interview on Arirang TV uploaded in January 2015: And here he is playing one of his best-known compositions, Chimhyangmoo (침향무 | 沈香舞), performed on the KBS show Gugak Hanmadang. The definitive obituary in English has been written by Jocelyn Clark in the Asia Times. I was […]

Javier Cha on the uses of digitised historical data

Last night at SOAS there was a choice of two early evening events to start the weekend. I only heard about the appearance of South Korean queer artist and activist Heezy Yang (aka Hurricane Kimchi) two hours before the event, and I had already prepared myself mentally for the Centre of Korean Studies seminar on […]

LSE SU Korea Future Forum 2018: Korea in the G-2 Era

Notice of this year’s Korea Future Forum at the LSE: LSE SU Korea Future Forum 2018: Korea in the G-2 Era 9am, 10 February 2018 Hong Kong Theatre, Clement House, London School of Economics, 265 Strand, London, WC2R 1DH Tickets £40 (students £25) + fee from https://lsekff2018.eventbrite.co.uk/ Dresscode: Business Smart | FREE lunch provided | The event is […]

Congratulations to the KCCUK: 10 years old today

The Korean Cultural Centre opened the doors for its launch party ten years ago today, on 30 January 2008. Jennifer Barclay, author of Meeting Mister Kim, was there to cover the event for LKL. It’s been a hectic 10 years since then: 10 film festivals 245 film screenings (not counting collateral screenings in places like […]

UK military develops plans for rescuing Brits

Apparently the MoD have been doing some contingency planning, and sent some top brass over to check out the lie of the land: Based on the information [Senior British military officers] collected, they are devising an evacuation plan for some 8,000 British civilians in South Korea (Chosun Ilbo). I suppose it was the responsible thing […]

The LKL quiz of the year 2017

I’m currently going through my 2017 press cuttings and trying to make sense of them, in the hope that as in (some) previous years I’ll be able to pull together a series of posts summarising some of the most newsworthy stories of the year. In case I don’t manage to get that done (after all, […]

Evening talk: Inside North Korea

Mike Glendinning and Jihyun Park gave this talk in London and Manchester last year (6 Nov and 3 Dec 2017). Further opportunities to hear the talk are in London on 23 Jan and Manchester on 18 Mar 2018: Inside North Korea Venue: Lock 17, Camden Lock Place, London, NW1 8AL (Exact address will be provided […]

OB seem to be getting their money’s worth

Who knows how much Gordon Ramsay is getting paid to be brand ambassador for Oriental Brewery’s Cass lager. But he’s certainly getting their brand into the news, at least in the English language press, both in the UK and Korea. His current promotional tour to Korea, coinciding with his filming of an episode of Please Take […]

A few links relating to Trump’s visit

A few links relating to President Trump’s visit to Seoul before they are too out of date: His hosts used an official dinner to score two foreign policy points over the Japanese: One of the guests was former comfort woman Lee Yong-soo and the Japanese were said not to have appreciated it when Trump embraced […]

Sad news

Kim Hyewon, a 22 year-old student who was studying English here fell to her death after jumping in the air to pose for a photo at the edge of the Seven Sisters. According to the Telegraph: A statement by witness Young Choi, 24, said: “I went to the Seven Sisters for tourism. Another Korean girl, […]

Jeju teachers in Kingston exchange

I do like receiving these occasional press releases from Kingston Council as I wouldn’t normally get to hear about things like this: Kingston schools welcome teachers from Korea in cultural exchange programme Seven teachers from Jeju in South Korea, Kingston’s partner town, are working in local schools and staying with local families as part of […]