For ten days choreographers held a master class for ballet dancers and the theater’s drama troupe at the State Republican Academic Korean Theater of Musical Comedy in Almaty.
For ten days choreographers from the Association for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Korea held a master class for ballet dancers and the theater’s drama troupe at the State Republican Academic Korean Theater of Musical Comedy in Almaty. So, another new dance was added to the repertoire – “Haken hvadehapsolmu”, which means “Dance of the cranes”. And the other day, the artists presented the result of their work to their audience at a concert called “Through Generations”.
Silence reigned in the hall. Everyone was waiting for a miracle… And it happened on the stage. Music was playing, which was accompanied by fragments of Korean dances on the screen. And suddenly a voice was heard: “Who knows what dance is? Flour? Joy? Or maybe happiness or lack thereof? Shadows and music, an accidental mixture or the mystery of the fusion of two elements?..” After these breathtaking words, the program of the concert “Through Generations” opens with the “Hieroglyphs” dance. And then presenters Yuri Tsang and Antonina Pyak took the stage, leading a festive evening in two languages: Russian and Korean.
– In the rich and centuries-old culture of the Koreans, a significant place was occupied by rituals, folk holidays and festivities, which included calm, cheerful and sometimes rhythmic songs that reflected the festive mood, and, of course there were theatrical performances. A huge role in the preservation of traditional Korean art, in particular the dance and music, belongs to the Korean theater, – said Yuri Tsang.
For more than an hour, the audience enjoyed an incredibly bright, colorful spectacle, and admired the most beautiful costumes. And it couldn’t have gone otherwise. More than ten performances were presented to the audience: the traditional Pukchon Lion Games performance, which is under the protection of UNESCO; court dance “Khagangmu”; dance with fans and many others and, of course, the promised “Dance of the Cranes”. In fact this dance is many years old, and it was even performed at the court in the distant XVIII century!
– The dance includes not only cranes and their beautiful dance, but also our female performers who appear from the lotus flower after it has been pecked by cranes. But this year only one part was shown to the audience – a dance of cranes. Next year we are bringing it back but this time it will include the girls and the lotus, – Elena Kim, director of the Korean theater, told Litera.
According to her, each visit of teachers from the Republic of Korea is an invaluable experience in studying the deeply traditional culture of this country. Many of the dance numbers that they bring are included in the list of masterpieces of the oral intangible cultural heritage within the framework of the UNESCO program.
This particular dance was included in the book of state cultural heritage under number 40.
“Traditional dances themselves are very difficult to perform, because they are filled with deep philosophical meaning,” continued Elena Kim, answering a question about the complexity of performing these dances. – As you probably know, the culture of Korea is based on shamanism, Confucianism and Buddhism. Everything that is not performed in the traditional dance art came precisely from ancient traditions – worshiping, exile, and so on.
Performing dance numbers in oversized costumes will always be challenging, because it is something new and unusual. But our artists always attend master classes with great interest, each time discovering new facets of the performing arts. I should also mention that whenever teachers from Korea work with our artists they always mention their high level of professionalism.
photo by Konstantin KNYAZEVICH, Almaty