Pyongyang Circus Troupe DepartsThe Pyongyang Circus Troupe left Seoul on June 11 to a chorus of loud applause, finishing their 14-day soujourn in South Korea.
The troupe fascinated South Koreans with a dazzling display of acrobatics and, furthermore, helped to create an atmosphere of detente just before the inter-Korean summit.
Kim Yu-sik, leader of the 102 member troupe, left for North Korea via Beijing after a fare-well party at Kimpo airport.
Kim said that, "We are grateful to Seoul citizen and our sponsors for our performance and we hope that there will be more civilian exchanges between the Koreas."
About 132,000 people attended the 11 performances given by the Pyongyang circus. Crowds attending the performances applauded and gave standing ovation to the acrobats whenever they completed some particularly breathtaking performance. Audience members sang the ''Unification Song'' at the end of every performance, hugging one another and shedding tears.
Unfortunately, members of the circus troupe doggedly refused to sit for any press interviews, a reminder of the continuing partition of the Korean peninsula.
by Park So-young