Sunday, July 24, 2011

Everyone Watched a Mask Dance Drama Performance

July 21st, 2011
At Dankook University the lesson plan for the day included showing the students the movie Seopyeonje which everyone should watch as it's fabulous, so I started out with a lecture orienting them to types of vocal music with extra emphasis on pansori (the subject of the movie). I think they really enjoyed it.

In the evening I met up with Kathy and Tim again and we went to the Dragon Hill Spa (찜질방) which was awesome, of course. They were quite impressed and really appreciative of the awesomeness that is Korean bathhouse culture.

July 22nd, 2011
Prof. Hilary Finchum-Sung came to guest lecture to the class. Not knowing the route to Dankook University I met her at 강남 Gangnam Station and we took the bus together. This meant we had lots of time to chat, yay! She's far enough into her career to have great advice, but new enough to not have outdated information or have forgotten what you really need to know when you're at my stage. She gave a great lecture to the students—her focus was globalization in Korean music, talking about whether fusion is Korean music, for example, but she gave a good solid overview of Korean music before she got to the point of the lecture. Although I had taught the students lots of the same stuff, the reality is that they are being hit with tons of brand new words, an entire world of things they knew nothing about two weeks ago, so a solid well-organized review was great for them. Also she brought her 해금 haegeum with her and demonstrated different types of music on the instrument.  

For the end of class we discussed one out of two planned articles, then practiced 봉산탈춤 Bongsan Talchum motions. The students are getting better and better. I rode back to Seoul with Hilary and went straight to 선릉역. I drank coffee and worked on my computer until it was time to meet Kathy. We briefly walked through the park at the royal tombs, then met Tim and ate dinner before the mask dance drama performance for the evening.
Not the best cell phone photo of Kathy

The performance was the third in this series where they are combining different arts on themes. The theme was 노장, the old monk. Oddly 북청사자놀음 Bukcheong Saja Noleum showed their monk dance, then we saw the 은율탈춤 Eunyul Talchum old monk scene, or the start of it anyway. It felt very choppy and artificial and honestly the other two were not displayed well in comparison... Last there was about an hour of 봉산탈춤 Bongsan Talchum. The performance included the 8목중 8 dark-faced monks plus the entire old monk scene all the way through the shoe seller and 취발이 Chuibali. 8 students from Dankook had come (6 of mine and 2 others) and they all enjoyed it. After they show they took photos with some of the performers, then I said bye to my friends who were there and Tim, Kathy and I had a drink before saying good-bye until who knows when. 

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