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Culture Connected – Korea and South Africa

13 August 2018

In celebration of the 26th Anniversary of Diplomatic Relations between the Republic of Korea and the Republic of South Africa, the Korea Foundation for International Culture Exchange (KOFICE) in collaboration with the Embassy of the Republic of Korea to the Republic of South Africa, the Korea National University of Arts and Kukkiwon (National Taekwondo Headquarters), presented a “Culture Connected” performance on Tuesday, 31 July 2018 at the Aula Theatre, University of Pretoria.

Photo: Dr Jong Dae Park, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea pictured with organisers, choreographers, directors and artists

The showcase brought together art, music, dance and sport.




Medumo Creative Arts and Korean E-Sang

The show began with the Medumo Creative Arts performing traditional South African songs and dances followed by one of the most prominent Korean traditional chamber music groups, E-Sang. This music group presented a special programme only for South African people with creative South African music played with a variation of Korean traditional music. The two groups delivered a spectacular collaboration performance with the very well-known South African songs, ‘Wakawaka’ and ‘Shosholoza’.



Students from the Korea National University of Arts (K-Arts), a high-level artistic dance institution established in 1993, performed “Dan Chung” which means harmony of Dan (red colour) and Chung (blue colour) based on the Yin-Yang principle of Oriental Philosophy. With a mix of different colours and beautiful movements, the dancers enchanted the audience of more than eight hundred people, and their performance received a resounding round of applause.





The grand finale of the event was delivered by the Kukkiwon Taekwondo Demonstration Team. The audience was thrilled and surprised with all the high kicks, jumps, flips, wooden block-breaking, board-smashing and gravity-defying jumps.The Team was founded in 1974 and have toured more than 120 countries. Every year the Team tours 14 countries promoting Taekwondo.






The demonstration ended with a standing ovation from the audience, when a flag-waving dance of the two countries was performed to K'naan’s ‘Wavin' Flag’, the official anthem of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. At this World Cup the Korean football team qualified for the second round when they drew with Nigeria in Durban and thus the song holds a special place in the hearts of both Koreans and South Africans.



The 'Art is Connected' part of the celebration was held at Ditsong National Museum of Cultural History. In commemoration of Women's month in South Africa, the exhibition, which showcases the traditional living culture of South African and Korean women in the past was opened on 25 July 2018 and will run until 26 August 2018.





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