The Korea Herald


Show must go on -- even if it means waiting extra two weeks

By Im Eun-byel

Published : July 3, 2020 - 16:30

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Overseas-based artists are continuing to perform onstage in Korea, even if it means going through the two-week self-quarantine periods.

Though rules on overseas travel have lately been relaxed -- allowing essential overseas trips -- still, crossing borders at a time like this is not easy. Many performances across the world have been canceled, with artists unable to travel around the way they used to.

Here in Korea, some performances with foreign artists are carrying on, as the artists have been willing to go through the two-week quarantine process before hitting the stage. 

Massimo Zanetti at the Incheon International Airport (Gyeonggi Arts Center) Massimo Zanetti at the Incheon International Airport (Gyeonggi Arts Center)

Massimo Zanetti, music director of the Gyeonggi Philharmonic Orchestra, recently traveled here from Italy for the orchestra’s concerts in July. After testing negative for COVID-19, the conductor underwent the two-week self-quarantine.

The maestro will take the baton for the orchestra for concerts “Mozart & Beethoven” on July 18 and 19 at the Seoul Arts Center.

In May, the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra’s Music Director Osmo Vanska flew in to Korea from the US and went through a two-week self-quarantine in Seoul. The Finnish conductor took the baton for four concerts in Seoul.

French opera director Vincent Boussard led the Korea National Opera for opera “Manon” on June 25 and 28. Though streamed online without an in-person audience, “Manon” was the first full-sized opera to be performed anywhere since the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the troupe.

Boussard, who directed the state-funded opera troupe for the same opera in 2018, returned to Korea and endured the two weeks of self-quarantine at a hotel in Seoul.

In September, the international tour production of musical “Cats” will open at the Charlotte Theater in eastern Seoul. Around 40 foreign nationals among the cast and staff will come to Korea, taking the necessary preventive measures against the coronavirus such as going through a two-week self-quarantine to prepare for the show.

By Im Eun-byel (