2010 BUDAPEST FESTIVAL ORCHESTRA
Seoul Arts Center, Concert Hall
Saturday: The Budapest Festival Orchestra under the baton of director Ivan Fischer will perform on Saturday. The orchestra was formed in 1983 by Fischer and pianist Zoltan Kocsis to draw top Hungarian musicians. After two decades, Hungary’s Ministry of Education and Culture designated the orchestra a national institution and offered financial support. The orchestra is ranked as one of the world’s best along with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and Boston Symphony Orchestra.
The guest artist is pianist Hai Kyung Suh, who will play Tchaikovsky’s “Piano Concerto No. 1.”
Also included is Bartok’s “Romanian Dance BB 61.” The concert starts at 8 p.m.
Tickets range from 30,000 won ($26) to 170,000 won.
Nambu Bus Terminal Station, line No. 3, exit 5
(02) 580-1300, www.sac.or.kr
2010 ASIA SONG FESTIVAL
Jamsil Olympic Stadium
Oct. 23: Leading Asian pop stars will gather in October to give Seoul a festive mood ahead of the G-20 Summit in November.
The Asia Song Festival is an annual pop music event in Korea and all proceeds will be donated to Unicef and earmarked for children in flood-stricken Pakistan. A total of 15 artists or bands from seven countries will participate, including Korean pop diva BoA. The tentative lineup also features Jane Zhang, dubbed China’s Mariah Carey for her high octave range, Taiwanese singer and entertainer Joe Cheng and Malaysian singer-songwriter and Asia-wide sensation Michael Wong.
Sports Complex Station, line No. 2, exit 7
(02) 2240-8801, www.asf.or.kr
ITZHAK PERLMAN RECITAL
Seoul Arts Center
Oct. 26: Israeli violinist Itzhak Perlman will perform in Seoul as part of the HyundaiCard Super Concert program. This will be the well-known virtuoso’s first concert in Korea in 19 years.
The recital will feature the Mozart Sonata for violin and piano in F Major, Beethoven’s Sonata for violin and piano No. 9 in A Major, and shorter pieces by Brahms and Schumann.
The concert starts at 8 p.m. The tickets range from 80,000 won to 200,000 won.
Nambu Bus Terminal Station, line No. 3, exit 5
(02) 02-580-1300, http://privia.hyundaicard.com.
DAEGU INTERNATIONAL OPERA FESTIVAL
Daegu Opera House
To Oct. 30: This festival has established itself as one of Asia’s major opera events since its inception in 2003. This year’s festival includes productions from Korea and abroad and opens with “Faust.” The program also features “Eugene Onegin,” “The Barber of Seville,” “Andrea Chenier,” “The Merry Wives of Windsor,” “The Marriage of Figaro,” “Simsan Kim Chang-sook” and “La Traviata.”
Tickets range from 10,000 won to 70,000 won.
From Seoul, take a bus or KTX to Daegu.
(053) 666-6111, www.diof.org
THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW
To Sunday: The original cast from Richard O’Brien’s original comedy musical “The Rocky Horror Show” is performing in Seoul until October. The cult classic has been performed on stage for millions of people around the world and has been made into a film. For the first time ever, the original cast is in Seoul. Admission fees range from 66,000 won to 110,000 won.
Samseong Station, line No. 2, Coex Mall exit
(02) 501-7888, www.coexarthall.co.kr/eng
SEOUL INTERNATIONAL DANCE
Seoul Arts Center, Mary Hall of Sogang University and Hoam Art Hall
To Oct. 20: The 13th Seoul International Dance Festival is Korea’s largest annual dance extravaganza. A wide variety of 63 performances covering traditional and contemporary Western, Eastern, classical and popular dance will be presented by local and foreign dance troupes. Malson of DanzAbierta, Cuba’s contemporary dance troupe, will open the festival.
(02) 3216-1185, www.sidance.org
SEOUL PERFORMING ARTS FESTIVAL
Sejong Center for the Performing Arts, Seoul Arts Center and etc.
To Nov. 14: SPAF 2010 will feature a variety of breathtaking performances, including plays, dance and combination works by 28 groups from eight countries, including Russia, France, Switzerland, Belgium, Poland, Lithuania, Bulgaria and Korea.
(02) 3673-2561, www.spaf.or.kr
LG Arts Center
Open run: Based on the movie of the same name, and with music by Elton John, this musical has been a mega-hit worldwide. This is the first non-English language production of the show, which was previously produced in Britain, Australia and the United States. Four men will alternate in the title role, including Im Sun-woo, who is the youngest person ever to play the character.
It was nominated in 15 categories at the 2009 Tony Awards and ended up winning 10 of the major awards, including best musical.
Performances are at 8 p.m. from Tuesdays to Fridays and at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. There is no performance on Mondays.
Tickets range from 50,000 won to 130,000 won.
Yeoksam Station, line No. 2, exit 7
(02) 3446-9630, www.musicalbillyelliot.co.kr
TRADITIONAL KOREAN PERFORMANCE
THE 44TH CHEOYONG CULTURE
Ulsan Metropolitan City
From tomorrow to Sunday: Cheoyong is a ritual court dance performed to ward off evil and to invite good luck. In 2009, this dance from the Unified Silla period was inscribed on Unesco’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The four-day festival features 52 companies from 17 different countries and 64 performances in genres ranging from traditional Korean music, theater and dance to B-boying.
The festival program also includes a mask parade with giant Cheoyong masks and various foreign masks. The Cheoyong Culture Festival was created in 1991 by Ulsan Metropolitan City, together with the Cheoyong Culture Festival’s Organization Committee, to give people opportunities to experience the dance.
From Seoul, take a bus or KTX to Ulsan.
(052) 260-7544, www.cheoyong.or.kr
2010 MYRIADE WAVE CONCERT
Bukchon Changwoo Theater
To Nov. 6: Consisting of 36 concerts over a three-month period, this event will feature Korean traditional music performances with a variety of traditional musical instruments, including the geomungo, a type of zither. Twelve teams selected through a competition will present their work, as will six Korean traditional music performance teams, including Manyo Company, which uses satire and humor in their work.
The concerts begin at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
Tickets cost 5,000 won.
Anguk Station, line No. 3, exit 3
(02) 747-3809, www.indiegugak.com
SEOPYEONJE BOSEONG SORI FESTIVAL
Oct. 16 to 17: This festival celebrates pansori, traditional Korean narrative singing, and the contributions of legendary pansori singer Park Yu-jeon. Park was one of the nation’s best pansori singers, an accomplishment he was able to achieve through the support of King Gojong and his father, the Daewongun. The festival program includes performances of Korean traditional music, exhibitions displaying artifacts related to pansori and other items.
From Seoul, take a bus to Boseong Terminal.
(061) 852-2181, www.boseong.go.kr
GIMJE HORIZON FESTIVAL
Gimje, North Jeolla Province
Today to Sunday: The Gimje Horizon Festival is a feast for visitors to experience the joy of the harvest in the beautiful rural environment of the Honam plain, the largest grain-producing region in Korea. Programs include rice harvesting and crop farming, kite making and flying, folk games and a temple stay at the famous Geumsan Temple.
(063) 540-3031, http://festival.gimje.go.kr
PUSAN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Movie theaters in Haeundae, Nampo-dong and other areas
Tomorrow to Oct. 15: The Pusan International Film Festival is Korea’s first and one of Asia’s largest film events. A total of 308 films from 67 countries will be shown in five theaters in Busan.
The 15th PIFF will feature nearly 100 world premiers. “Under the Hawthorn Tree,” a film by Chinese director Zhang Yimou and starring Zhou Dongyu and Shawn Dou, will open the festival.
2010 GREAT BAEKJE WORLD FESTIVAL
Buyeo and Gongju, South Chungcheong
To Oct. 17: Head out to Buyeo and Gongju to learn about the cultural heritage of Baekje, one of the Three Kingdoms of old Korea. Today, the region is home to Buddhist temples, royal relics and more.
The festival features two special events. One entitled “A Day at Sabi Palace” offers a re-enactment of royal ceremonies such as the king’s parade, coronation and welcoming party for envoys. “A Day at Ungjin Fortress” offers hands-on cultural activities to help visitors understand the Baekje era.
Some of Baekje’s long-unseen relics will also be put on display in a related exhibition. The festival’s closing ceremony will be held Oct. 17 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
From Seoul, take a bus to Gongju or take the KTX to Daejeon Station.
(041) 837-6954, www.baekje.org
DAEGU PHOTO BIENNALE
Daegu Culture and Arts Center, the Bongsan Cultural Center and other venues
To Oct. 24: The Daegu Photo Biennale will exhibit works by more than 240 artists from 22 countries, most of which are Asian or European.
The main exhibition of the biennale has the title of “true(E)motion,” and the titles of the subexhibitions are “Seconds of Life,” “Breaking the Edge” and “Helsinki School.”
The “Helsinki School” section exhibits works by the most well-known artists to come out of the school, including Ulla Jokisalo and Jorma Puranen.
Admission is 5,000 won for adults, 3,000 won for teens and 2,000 won for children. Go to Seongdangmot Station on Daegu Subway line No. 1, exit 1 and walk for 10 minutes.
(070) 7552-2445, www.daeguphoto.com
Gwangju Biennale Hall, Gwangju Museum of Art, Gwangju Folk Museum
To Nov. 7: The biannual contemporary art show in the southwestern city features photographic, installation and media works by about 120 artists from 31 countries. The title of the biennale is “10,000 Lives,” or “Maninbo” in Korean, after the epic poem by renowned poet Ko Un.
Tickets range from 2,000 won for children to 14,000 won for adults. From Seoul, take a flight to Gwangju Airport or take the KTX to Gwangju Station.
(062) 608-4114, www.gb.or.kr
MEDIA CITY SEOUL
Seoul Museum of Art and more.
To Nov. 17: This showcase is focused on new media art.
The 45 participating groups of artists from 21 countries include famous names like British-American artist Sarah Morris and Thai film director Apichatpong Weerasethakul.
Among the Korean artists involved are Cho Duck-hyun, Lim Min-ouk and Noh Sun-tag.
The show is entitled “Trust,” and organizers said the artwork on display will tell or ask what trust is, as the expansion of media brings about a distortion of information and the blurring of messages.
Admission is free.
City Hall Station, line No. 1 or 2, exit 1
(02) 2124-8947, www.mediacityseoul.org
Busan Museum of Art and etc.
To Nov. 20: The title of this year’s biennale is “Living in Evolution,” and is based on the idea that art, in all its various forms, has contributed to the intellectual evolution of the human race.
The artistic director is independent Japanese curator Takashi Azumaya.
The main exhibition features works by 72 artists from 23 countries.
Exhibition hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Tickets at the door cost 7,000 won for adults and 4,000 won for students, or 5,000 won and 3,000 won in advance.
(051) 503-6111, http://2010.busanbiennale.org
*Event information is culled from the Korea Tourism Organization and other online sources.