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Traditional gugak orchestra to reinterpret BTS music

BTS poses for a photo in front of Geunjeongjeon, within Gyeongbokgung in Seoul, Sept. 29. (Big Hit Entertainment)
BTS poses for a photo in front of Geunjeongjeon, within Gyeongbokgung in Seoul, Sept. 29. (Big Hit Entertainment)

The National Orchestra of Korea will use traditional instruments to perform one of BTS’ hit albums and a mobile game soundtrack, targeting young audiences who may be unfamiliar with “gugak,” traditional Korean music.

The orchestra, under the National Theater of Korea, will hold a recital June 11 at the theater in central Seoul, introducing the gugak version of K-pop act BTS’ 2019 track “Mikrokosmos” and the soundtrack from hit mobile game “Cookie Run: Kingdom,” along with other gugak orchestral pieces such as “River” and “House of Emotions” by composer Choi Ji-hye, and “Time of Dew” composed by Hwang Ho-jun.

The upcoming recital is part of the orchestra’s seasonal program, designed to attract young audiences who have learned about gugak only through textbooks.

“We will stage a multisensory performance for the performance of BTS’ ‘Mikrokosmos,’ using video images and lightings across the stage and the audience seats, as if we were floating in space,” the orchestra said in a press release. 


A poster image for the upcoming Youth Concert on June 11 (National Theater of Korea)
A poster image for the upcoming Youth Concert on June 11 (National Theater of Korea)

For the upcoming recital, Vice Conductor Lee Seung-hweon will take the baton.

The National Orchestra of Korea is working on producing content that is appropriate for people of different ages so they can better understand traditional Korean music.

Meanwhile, the orchestra will offer a recording of its performance online, joining hands with local mobile carrier SK Telecom. The recording will be available through the streaming platform Wavve.

For more information, check the National Orchestra of Korea’s website at www.ntok.go.kr. Tickets cost 20,000 won ($18).

By Im Eun-byel (silverstar@heraldcorp.com)
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