Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Traditional Performances on Full Moon Day

Bakjeommu” (Fluttering Butterfly Wings Dance), inspired by the elegant movements of the creature in the spring, which will go on stage at the National Center for the Korean Traditional Performing Arts on Feb. 28.

The National Center for the Korean Traditional Performing Arts (NCKTPA) will hold a special performance on "Jeongwol Daeboreum" ― Great Full Moon Day ― which falls on Sunday this year.

Jeongwol Daeboreum is a Korean traditional holiday that celebrates the first full moon of the new year, according to the lunar calendar. "Jeongwol" means first month and ``Daeboreum'' means big full moon. It comes around every fifteenth of the first lunar calendar month.

On the day, the center has put on special traditional performances for the last 10 years.

This year's performance will be divided into two sessions ― the first at Yeakdang (Main Hall) of the center and the second at its outdoor plaza.

The center will also hold court banquet performances, which were designed to pray for the well-being of the nation and individuals. Some 90 performers will take part in the court dances on stage.

Traditional court dances such as "Bongraeui"and "Bakjeommu" (Fluttering Butterfly Wings Dance) will be presented with a new twist by adding the element of storytelling.

``Bongraeui,'' the signature court music of the Joseon Kingdom, incorporates music, songs and dance, welcomes ``Bonghwang'' (an imaginary bird), which appears in a peaceful world. It is a representative performance of the 15th century's Joseon Kingdom. Since 1999, the NCKTPA has recreated ``Bongraeui'' by paying close attention to old literature and adapting it to a modern style.

Inspired by the beautiful gestures of a butterfly in the spring, "Bakjeommu" was performed at court banquets of the late Joseon Kingdom. The dancers wear costumes embroidered with splendid butterflies, and the dance movements imitate the gorgeous and light movements of the creature.

Also to be performed is a court-dance medeley comprised of three dances: the Crane Dance (``Hakchum"), Lotus Flower Dance (``Yeonhwadaemu") and Mask Dance of Cheoyong (``Cheoyongmu"). It has been performed since the Joseon Kingdom at court banquets. The dance begins with a dancer wearing a crane costume expressing the elegant movements of the crane. When the crane pecks the lotus flower placed on the stage, a young dancer emerges and starts dancing. Later, dancers wearing masks of five different colors appear.

The performances will be mixed with fantastic lights and other visual effects.

On Full Moon Day, Koreans traditionally crack nuts with their teeth, hoping this practice will help keep their teeth healthy for the year.

Also, people climb mountains to see the first rising of the moon in the belief that the first person to see the moon rise will have good luck throughout the year.

Also, Koreans used to play a game called ``jwibulnori'' the night before the full moon, during which they burned dry grass on the ridges between rice fields and children whirled around with cans full of holes, through which a charcoal fire blazed.

Many people believe that these cans help fertilize and protect the new crops.
Also, Koreans eat ``ogokbap,'' rice mixed with five different types of grain ― rice, black beans, millet, red beans and kidney beans, along with various seasoned dried herbs.

The performance will take place on Feb. 28 at the center's Yeakdang and outdoor plaza.

Tickets cost from 8,000 won to 10,000 won. For more information, call (02) 580-3300 or visit

No comments:

Post a Comment