Movies, 'Messiah' to Herald HolidaysFor Koreans, December means round after round of traditional year-end parties. One purpose of these gatherings is to put the past year behind, usually with the aid of alcohol. But if draining drinks all month is not your cup of nog, check out these other cultural events, many of them Christmas-related.
"Monsters, Inc," a computer animation creation by Disney which sold $63 million worth of tickets during its first week in theaters in the United States, will be released here Dec. 21.
The story is set in a city, Monstropolis, inhabited by monsters. To produce energy they need to visit the human world, through bedroom closet doors, to collect the screams of children. Eventually a brave human girl, ironically named Boo, ventures to Monstropolis and meets the chiefs of the monsters' power plant.
Also a big hit in North America has been "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone," which will come to Korea on Dec. 14.
The local distributor of the film, Warner Brothers Korea, has been selling advance tickets since last month for the movie, which is based on the first of the best-selling series of books penned by J.K. Rowling.
Handel's "Messiah," an oratorio traditionally performed during the Christmas season, covers the birth, death and resurrection of Christ. Written in 1741, it became popular once it began to be performed yearly as a benefit for a London orphanage.
The National Chorus of Korea, led by the conductor Yeom Jin-seop, will perform Handel's masterpiece Dec. 7 and 8 at the National Theater of Korea. Tickets cost 2,000 won ($1.60) to 5,000 won. For information, call 02-587-8111.
Also, on Dec. 11, the Seoul Motet Choir, conducted by Park Chi-yong, will sing highlights from "Messiah" at the Seoul Arts Center.
Tchaikovsky's "The Nutcracker" is perhaps the musical piece most associated with Christmas. Korea National Ballet Theater will perform the ballet at the Opera House of the Seoul Arts Center between Dec. 18 and 25.
For information, call 02-587-6182. The Universal Ballet Company will also perform "The Nutcracker" Dec. 21-26 at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts. For information, call 02-2204-1035.
by Ki Sun-min