Tomorrow night, the Royal Asiatic Society of Koreais hosting a "Badaksori" performance.
This is Pansori.
Badaksori a group of artists who are producing Changjak Pansori. Pansori is the traditional Korean singing/speaking storytelling performance art; Changjak Pansori are new compositions of Pansori (the Pansori version of modern classical music) - since Pansori became a Korean cultural property in the '60s, it got sort of standardized, with a recognized canon of Pansori songs. But that's not how Pansori originally worked: it used to be a free-flowing storytelling form that the singer could adapt to the audience's responses.
Badaksori are trying to present THAT version of pansori: the one that still has life and spontaneity. They make social commentary and such, and compose pansori about modern events that are still happening in Korea; songs are also a lot shorter than the old, classical ones, which have been called "Korean Opera"... in part because they're really, really long, and maybe also because they're primarily enjoyed by old people.
Anyway, if you want to attend this performance, it's in the Resident's lounge, on the second floor of the Somerset Palace hotel, near the north end of Insadong, at 7:30pm on Tuesday Feb. 8th.
More info at the Royal Asiatic Society website (www.raskb.com/)
If you're a long-termer in Korea, and if you have a long-standing interest in the culture, etc., the Royal Asiatic Society is a good group to get connected with. Some of Korea's longest-term scholars, residents, embassy workers, and business owners are frequent attendees, and after each event, there's a little beer time when people sit, chat, and network. They have regular lectures, as well as tours around the country, some of which are family friendly.
For most lectures, admission is 5000 won for non-members, and free if you sign up and pay the annual membership fee. Tours are also cheaper if you pay the membership fee.
Second... and I figure into this one...
Matt, from Popular Gusts, Mike Hurt, from Metropolitician, Ben Wagner, who's working on the HIV testing challenge in Korea's courts, and I, will be speaking about media scapegoating, foreign crime, and building the English teaching community, and you're invited to come.
The full text of the invitation poster (and the image above) are at Popular Gusts.