Posting Date: October 16, 2009
KSU's Year of Korea has formal kick-off on campusBy Jarmea L. Boone
Tae Kwon Do by Dan Han Martial Arts
KSU Dance Company members
Photos by Linda Tincher
Kennesaw State University presented a week of featured events Oct. 12-16 in celebration of the 2009-2010 Year of Korea, a part of the annual Country Study series. Numerous guest artists and KSU faculty, staff and students highlighted the week with lectures and experiences tailoring to Korean culture, arts and music.
On a rainy Oct. 14, students, faculty, staff and guests were able to attend the Year of Korea Day event in the student center. The afternoon featured various special performances.
Two members of the KSU Tellers, a storytelling performance group housed in the Department of Theatre and Performance Studies, performed their versions of traditional Korean folktales. Several instructors from Dan Han Martial Arts showcased the most advanced techniques in a Tae Kwon Do demonstration. The KSU Dance Company presented the original form of Taepyungmu, the “Dance of Peace.” “Although its origin is unknown, it is believed that the dance was performed by the kings and queens of the Joseon dynasty in wishing great peace on the country,” says Dan Paracka, director of International Services and Programs at KSU. There was also food tasting provided by the Korean Spirit and Culture Promotion Project, a non-profit organization that was formed to promote Korean history and culture.
During Year of Korea week, students in this semester’s theatre and performance studies learning communities performed “The Hare’s Liver,” a Korean folktale adapted by TPS Lecturer Margaret Baldwin. Assistant Professor of Dance Min Kim also taught a Talchum, a Korean mask/folk dance, to students during the performance. This performance accompanied the lectures that Baldwin and TPS Assistant Professor Jim Davis gave on Korean theater and performance during the week. “We structured this essentially as a ‘how to’ demonstration for TPS 1107’s end-of-the-year group project,” says Baldwin. “It was a way to get 1107 students excited about the project and show them some potential areas of research and inspiration.”
Throughout the week, members of the Korean Zither Musicians hosted lectures and a demonstration of the gayageum, Korea’s national instrument. The group performed in a concert in the Dr. Bobbie Bailey & Family Performance Center and with the Samulnori Percussion Quartet during the Year of Korea Day event at the Legacy Gazebo on Oct. 14. Since 1993, the Korean Zither Musicians Association, based in Seoul, Korea, has performed on national and international levels to promote Korean zither music to the world.