Flash On opens the door for young playwrights

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Flash On opens the door for young playwrights

It is not easy for young playwrights, especially female writers, to seize an opportunity to stage their works or work with renowned directors. As if to attest to the deeply rooted culture of men dominating the top echelons of the art world in Korea, a storm recently hit the industry as several bigwigs were embroiled in the recent “Me Too” allegations of sexual harassments.

The Flash On Creative Platform project attempts to provide fair opportunities to young Korean playwrights with talent. The project, which launched in 2015, selects two rising playwrights each year and provides them with mentoring sessions, connects them to renowned directors and helps realize their work on stage in front of an audience.

“We hope this project signals the beginning of a clean and upright theater industry in Korea,” said Kim Gwang-bo, head of the Seoul Metropolitan Theatre which operates the project.“I believe this project will reset Korea’s theater world and help start anew.”

Six playwrights have been selected since 2015. Next month, four of them will be staging their work at Daehangno’s Yeonwoo Theater in central Seoul. Although unintentional, four of the young playwrights are women: Kim Kyung-min who wrote “You and the Piano;” Kim Aromi, who wrote “My Ellenin;” Song Kyung-wha, who wrote “Tsetse Fly;” and Lee Bo-ram, who wrote “A Scenery with you.”

“We didn’t plan this but it proves that there are many talented female playwrights in Korea,” said Kim Gwang-bo.

Kim Su-hee, leader of the Miin theatre group and the first to accuse playwright and producer Lee Youn-taek of sexual misconduct, will be directing the play “You and the Piano.”

The four plays for the Flash On Creative Platform will run from March 15 to April 8. Tickets cost 30,000 won ($28). For more information, visit sjartgroups.or.kr/intro/theater.

BY YIM SEUNG-HYE [sharon@joongang.co.kr]
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