Published : 2013-12-27 20:14
Updated : 2013-12-27 20:19
|The Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Year’s Concert will be screened at Megabox theaters on Jan. 3. (Megabox)|
2014 New Year’s Concert: The famed Vienna Strauss Festival Orchestra will hold a New Year’s concert at the Seoul Arts Center concert hall on Jan. 15 at 8 p.m. Willy Byuhhira will direct the orchestra, formed 36 years ago, in its performances of “Overture Der Zigunerbaron”; the waltz “Kuenstlerleben”; “Vergnugungszug,” Polka-schnell, op. 281; and an excerpt from “Ritter Pazman” by Johann Strauss II, among others. Soprano Hong Hae-ran, the first Asian female winner of the 2011 Queen Elizabeth Grand Prize, will join the orchestra. Tickets are priced from 50,000 won to 130,000 won. For more information call (02) 599-5743.
The Vienna Boys’ Choir New Year Concert: The Vienna Boys’ Choir, known for their “heavenly voices,” will hold a New Year’s Concert at the Seoul Arts Center Concert Hall on Jan. 19, led by its first ever female conductor, Kim Bo-mi. Under the baton of the Korean conductor, the Mozart Team of the choir will present medieval church music, waltzes and folk songs from around the world as well as some songs from film soundtracks. This is the 17th time since 1978 that the boys’ choir, which has been around for 520 years, is visiting Korea. The choir will also perform at Guri Art Hall, Gyeonggi Province; Daegu Opera House; Gimhae Arts Center, South Gyeongsang Province; and Yeosu Yeul Maru, South Jeolla Province. For information and reservations go to www.clubbalcony.co.kr.
Evgeny Kissin Recital: Child prodigy-turned-mega pianist Evgeny Kissin will perform at the Seoul Arts Center on March 30, presenting Schubert’s Piano Sonata No. 17 in D major, Scriabin’s Sonata No. 2 in G sharp minor and “Four Sea Interludes” from Benjamin Britten’s “Peter Grimes.” As the story goes, the pianist, whose nickname is Genya, started to play the piano at age 2 after hearing his sister play the instrument. He started his professional musical training at 6, entering the Gnessin State Musical College for Gifted Children, made a debut featuring Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor with the Ulyanovsk Symphony Orchestra and became an international sensation at 12 when he played and recorded Chopin piano concertos with the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra. Kissin is also famous for obliging concertgoers, with his 2006 and 2008 concerts finishing after 11 p.m. because of dozens of encore performances. For more information about the concert call 1544-1555 or (02) 580-1300.
“Count Down Seoul 2014 @ Times Square”: The Count Down Seoul 2014 is a New Year’s music festival that will feature a wide variety of local acts to usher in 2014. The event will include performances by Dynamic Duo, Jay Park, IDIOTAPE, Norazo, comedian and TV personality Park Myung-soo, Jung Jun-young and Rhythm Power. The five-hour long music festival leading up to Jan. 1 will be held on New Year’s Eve at the Times Square plaza in Yeongdeungpo, Seoul. Tickets to the event can be purchased online for 55,000 won or on-site for 66,000 won. For more information, call (02) 3141-3488 or visit www.interpark.com.
“Jeff Bernat”: Up-and-coming R&B singer-songwriter Jeff Bernat will be performing live in Seoul at the Uniqlo AX Hall on Jan. 11. The 23-year-old musician from Reno, Nevada, has gained much attention with his music on social networking portal sites, including having a large following on YouTube. Bernat made an official debut with his first album “The Gentleman Approach” released in December 2011. On Dec. 5 of this year, the artist released his second full-length studio album titled “Modern Renaissance.” Tickets to the event can be purchased online for 99,000 won. For more information, call (02) 3141-3488 or visit www.interpark.com.
“James Blake: Live in Seoul”: James Blake is young singer-songwriter and producer from London whose critically acclaimed eponymous debut album was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize in 2011. Blake released his second studio album titled “Overgrown” earlier this year and it went on to win the 2013 Mercury Prize, surprisingly beating out heavy favorites including the legendary David Bowie. The album was ranked at the top of the U.S. Dance/Electronic Albums Chart and No. 8 of the U.K. Albums Chart. Blake will be performing live in Seoul on Jan. 19 at the Uniqlo AX Hall. Tickets can be purchased online, with prices listed at 88,000 won. For more information, call (02) 3141-3488 or visit www.interpark.com.
|Avril Lavigne is to perform a live concert at Olympic Hall in Seoul on Feb. 19. (Avril Lavigne Official Web site)|
|A scene from “Giselle,” which will be included in the upcoming gala program of UBC (Universal Ballet Company)|
“No Dance: Between Body and Media”: The Korean National Contemporary Dance Company is presenting the special exhibition “No Dance: Body and Media” this month. It features video works and images consisting of dance pieces created by artists from Korea and abroad, including William Forsythe, Kim Bo-ra, Harun Farocki and Yvonne Rainer. The exhibition runs from Dec. 23- 31 at Daehangno Zero-One Design Center. For more information, call (02) 3472-1402.
“The Nutcracker”: Korea’s Universal Ballet Company is getting ready to treat its fans to its popular rendition of “The Nutcracker.” First performed by UBC in 1986, the show is based on 19th-century German writer E.T.A. Hoffmann’s version of the story and French ballet choreographer Marius Petipa’s dance. UBC has cast some 10 of its finest dancers, including principal dancers Hwang Hye-min and Eom Jae-yong. The show, which tells the story of a young girl’s favorite Christmas toy coming alive and whisking her away to a magical kingdom, is one of Tchaikovsky’s famous ballet compositions, along with “Swan Lake” and “Sleeping Beauty.” The show runs from Dec. 20- 31 at Universal Art Center in Neung-dong, eastern Seoul. Tickets range from 10,000 won to 100,000 won. For more information, visit www.uac.co.kr.
|A scene from “Ghost the Musical” (Seensee Company)|
“Novecento”: A theater monologue featuring live piano music is currently being performed in Seoul. Titled “Novecento,” the play tells the story of a pianist named Novecento, who was abandoned by his parents shortly after his birth on the transatlantic ship the Virginian in 1900. Novecento ― who was named by a kind sailor who found him ― never leaves this ship; his innate talent makes him a fine pianist, and he spends his entire life playing for the passengers. Pianists Kwak Yoon-chan and Park Jong-hwa share the role of Novecento, while actors Lee Geon-young and Jo Pan-soo share the role of Max, a trumpet player who reminisces about the pianist, whom he met and became friends with on the ship. “Novecento” runs until Dec. 29 at The Stage in Seoul’s Sinchon district. Tickets range from 25,000 won to 35,000 won. For more information, call 1544-1555.
“Mamma Mia!”: The global smash hit musical “Mamma Mia” is currently being performed in Seoul starring a British cast. Based on ABBA songs including “Dancing Queen,” “Money, Money, Money,” and “Thank You for the Music,” the musical offers a hilarious tale of a young bride-to-be’s search for her unknown father. The show premiered in the Korean language starring an all-Korean cast in 2004. The current run is the first time the musical is being performed here in the English language and starring a cast from London. “Mamma Mia!” runs from Nov. 26 to March 23 at Blue Square’s Samsung Electronics Hall in Hannam-dong, Seoul. Tickets range from 50,000 won to 150,000 won. For more information, call 1544-1555.
“Music Show Wedding”: Popular musical producer Song Seung-hwan, whose 1997 nonverbal piece “Nanta” became a global hit, has returned with another foreigner-friendly work. Titled “Wedding,” Song’s latest musical is also nonverbal ― its actors and actresses sing, dance, act and play more than 20 musical instruments. The one-of-a-kind performance is specifically designed to draw foreign audiences. The show is a comical theatrical portrait of an ordinary Korean wedding, where the bride’s father isn’t particularly fond of his future son-in-law. Song follows the groom’s hilarious efforts to impress his father-in-law prior to the wedding ceremony, mixed with rhythmic music and dance. “Wedding” runs until Dec. 31 at Music Show Wedding Theater in Hongdae, Seoul. For tickets and information, call (02) 739-8288.
“Wicked”: After playing an unhappy Austrian empress (Elisabeth) and a mysterious, obsessive housekeeper (Rebecca), musical actress Oak Ju-hyun has now been cast to play the famous green-skinned witch in Broadway musical “Wicked.” The upcoming run, featuring an all-Korean cast, is the first Korean-language version of the musical. The musical tells the story of two very different witches in the Land of Oz ― the green-skinned, struggling and often-alienated Elphaba and the beautiful and popular blonde Glinda. The show is a ravishing spectacle and fantasy, mixed with a touching account of the difficulties of youth, life-changing friendship and growing up. “Wicked” is on an open run at Charlotte Theater in Jamsil, Seoul. Tickets range from 60,000 won to 140,000 won. For more information, call 1577-3363.
|“Addiction,” by Li Fan (Arario Gallery)|
“Rewriting the Landscape: China and India”: The exhibition at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea presents how contemporary artists in China and India perceive social and natural landscapes, featuring work by prominent artists from two of the fastest emerging contemporary art markets. Participating artists include Indian artists Gulammohmmed Sheikh, Achutan Ramachandran and Chinese aritists Xu Bing and Yin Xiu Zhen. The special exhibition, held in parallel with the opening of the new Seoul branch of the national art museum, offers glimpse into social conflicts, cultural diversities of the two Asian countries and how artists interpret them in their artworks. The exhibition continues through March 2 at the Gwacheon museum of the MMCA. For more information, visit www.mmca.go.kr.
“Photography tells Korea”: A touring photo exhibition brings together images that reflect Korean society at four city museums in Daejeon, Changwon, Gwangju and Seoul until April 2014. Each exhibition features different images of Korea captured by professional photographers that shed light on the country’s society, people, history and the cities. The first exhibition will continue through Feb. 26 at the Daejeon Museum of Art, followed by the exhibition at the Gyeongnam Art Museum from Jan. 16 to April 16, the Seoul Museum of Art from Jan. 28 to March and the Gwangju Art Museum from Feb. 4-April 14. For more information, visit www.festivalofphotographyinmuseums.com.
“Jesus and Deaf Lamb”: One of the most famous biblical scenes ―baby Jesus in the arms of Mary surrounded by Wise Men from the East ― doesn’t feature the usual Western biblical representation in the late artist Woonbo Kim Ki-chang’s Jesus paintings. At a thatched-roof house, home for commoners in the Joseon period (1392-1910), Jesus appears as a happy child in the arms of Mary, wearing a rainbow-striped jeogori ― the traditional Korean children’s jacket. The Eastern Wise Men worshipping the newborn are dressed in official robes of Joseon ministers. Such paintings interpreting Jesus in Korean culture are on view at Seoul Museum’s “Jesus and Deaf Lamb” exhibition that marks the centennial birthday of the artist Kim Ki-chang (1914-2001) at Seoul Museum in Buam-dong, Jongno, Seoul, until Jan. 19. For more information, call (02) 395-0100 or visit www.seoulmuseum.org.
|Visitors fish for trout at Pyeongchang Trout Festival on Dec. 20. (Yonhap Newsthe)|
“Hwacheon Sancheonoe Festival”: The festival invites visitors for mountain trout fishing at the scenic mountain town of Hwacheon in Gangwon Province. Known as the habitat of the mountain trout that live in cold, clean water, Hwacheon has drawn more than 1 million visitors in the past seven years to the popular winter festival, chosen as one of the “Seven Wonders of Winter” by CNN and one of the best festivals in Korea by the Culture Ministry. Visitors can fish for trout through a hole in the ice and take part in a variety of outdoor winter activities such as sledding, ice sculpting and ice soccer. The festival runs from Jan. 4-26 at various venues near the Hwacheon stream. For more information, visit www.narafestival.com (English, Japanese and Chinese available) or call 1688-3005.
“Bugok Hawaii Ice Sculpture Festival”: The Bugok Hawaii Resort, a popular hot spring resort in Bugok, South Gyeongsang Province, is holding its sixth ice sculpture festival from Dec. 22 to Feb. 2. The annual ice sculpture festival invites visitors to its popular hot spring bath and many ice sculptures. The festival also offers winter activities such as ice sledding and snowball fights. The resort has opened its sledding hill and ice-skating and sledding rink, along with a themed hot spring bath in the winter. For more information, call (055) 536-6331 or visit www.bugokhawaii.co.kr (Available in English, Japanese and Chinese).