Theatre visit: a changgeuk Trojan Women

An adaptation of a Greek play more than 2400 years old interpreted through the medium of an early 20th century Korean performing practice does not immediately sound a promising theatrical experience, except perhaps to the handful of people who appreciate both Euripides’s take on Homer and Changgeuk’s adaptation of Pansori. Nevertheless, the Purcell Room had […]

Korean performers at the 2018 Edinburgh Fringe

I make it that there are eleven Korean or Korea-related performances at this year’s Fringe, plus one workshop. It’s nice that Brush Theatre are putting in their regular appearance – always popular with the younger audience – and we have newcomers such as Korean-American stand-up comedian Olivia Rhee and, from Kazakhstan, telling the story of […]

Theatre visit: 1446 – The Story of King Sejong the Great

Visitors to Seoul’s Gwanghwamun Square, and anyone with a cursory acquaintance with Korean history, will know of the existence of King Sejong. His statue dominates the broad avenue that leads southwards from Gwanghwamun itself, gazing into the distance towards the other great hero of Joseon history, Admiral Yi Sun-shin. Are the life and achievements of […]

Fringe review: Monkey Dance

This is a fun musical in which eight incredibly energetic and athletic performers leap around on stage to the musical accompaniment of a quintet of vocalists, beat-boxer and bass. There’s a loose story-line (not that it matters too much as the emphasis is on the music and action) in which an explorer comes to the […]

Brief Fringe review: Behind the Mirror

The Fringe version of Behind the Mirror, at 1 hour, is half an hour shorter than the full version that has successfully been performed in Korea for many years. In the version presented at the Fringe, the tale of Princess Pyonggang and General Ondal is told very briefly before a parallel story is told in […]

Think Korea 2006 – an introduction

Think Korea 2006 was an ambitious programme of cultural and other events organised by the Korean Embassy as part of the “Korea-UK Mutual Visit Year”. There was, I believe, a reciprocal series of UK-related events organised in Korea, but I never saw any publicity about it. One event I do know of: the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra […]

Miss Saigon to get Korean star

Hot on the heels of a Korean star appearing on the West End stage in Les Mis, Miss Saigon is to get a Korean lead in the shape of Hong Kwang-ho starring as Thuy. He appeared in the first Korean production of Miss Saigon a couple of years ago, according to producer Sir Cameron Mackintosh. […]

The ROK Air Force parodies Les Mis

For those who, like me, find musicals a bit of a chore, here’s a 13-minute parody of one of my least favourites. It almost makes me want to try the real thing all over again. Almost, but not quite. Well done the ROK Air Force’s 22nd Fighter Wing. Les Miserables ROKAF (Republic of Korea Air […]

Gumok, a new musical at the Chelsea Theatre

News of an interesting new musical getting an outing for one day only later this month in Chelsea, featuring the stories of the Korean Comfort Women: Gumok Date: 30th June, 2012 Place: Chelsea Theatre (SW10 0DR) Time: 5pm and 8pm Price: Pay what you like (min. £1) Project Team Gumok presents a new musical “Gumok” […]