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>Korean Literature Essay Contest 2009

2 Aug


Korea Literature Translation Institute (LTI Korea) and Korean Cultural Centre announce the first ‘Korean Literature Essay Contest 2009’ in the UK.
This contest is to introduce Korean literature to overseas readers and we look forward to all participants building a broader view of Korea literature through this programme.
The subject text of 2009 is ‘There a Petal Silently Falls'(Columbia University Press 2008) by Ch’oe Yun (저기 소리 없이 한 점 꽃잎이 지고).
The competition is open to entrants from across the UK and a panel of judges will select the best essay with the top three being awarded prizes. The first prize winner from each country will be entered for the Grand Prize, with the three nominations for the Grand Prize being invited to an awards ceremony in Seoul in December 2009.

– How to Enter
* Complete and submit the entry from available on the KCC website ( to receive your free copy of the subject text.
* The context is open to the public of all nationalities, but the essays must be in English.
* The essays must be the sole work of the contributors and not previously published in any form.

– Contest Schedule
* Summer 2009: Copies of the book distributed to all applicants.
* 31st October 2009, 5pm: Deadline for entries submitted to:
* 6th November 2009: Winners will be announced on the KCC website.
(Participants will be provided with the subject books once their applications have been received.)
– Format
* The essay must not exceed 2,000 words or less and typed.
* The submission must be completed with essays and application forms.
– Selection Process
* The award winners will be notified by 6th November 2009 and they will be invited to an award ceremony at the KCC (London) in November 2009.
– Awards
* First Place(1 person): Samsung Laptop
* Second Place (2 people): Samsung Mobile Phone
* Third Place (2 people): Samsung Digital Camera
* Judging Panel’s choice (2 people): Samsung MP3 Player

>Crossfields: Young Korean Artists in London

25 Jul


Date: 30th July – 12th September 2009
Venue: Korean Cultural Centre, Grand Buildings, 1-3 Strand, London WC2N 5BW
The Korean Cultural Centre UK launches the forthcoming exhibition ‘Crossfields’, an exhibition of 23 artists based in London. The exhibition will take place between 30 July and 12 September 2009.

Crossfields brings together a broad range of artists from across the art and design fields: each having studied in Korea before coming to Europe to continue their work. This multidisciplinary exhibition, with a collaboration of various aesthetic genres celebrates the crossing and blending of boundaries in the same way that the Korean Cultural Centre has worked to fuse Korea’s relationship with the British people.

Crossfields has been designed as a celebration of the vibrant talent that young Korean artist’s are now bringing to London’s art scene. Having come to the UK as mature students in the final stages of preparedness, the training they have received in London along with the artistic grounding that they received in Korea has served them well for this exhibition. To mark the symbolic union of so many disciplines under one exhibition, three of the artists were specifically commissioned to focus upon the interior and exterior of the Korean Cultural Centre UK as the centre piece of their work; they have risen to the challenge and produced some very interesting results. These thought-provoking pieces encourage the audience to question what is around them; to never accept anything at first glance. Nominated by their respective institutions, the Korean Cultural Centre UK looks forward to giving a platform to these artists to launch the next stage of their careers.

Crossfields also features ‘an exhibition within an exhibition’ showing the highly innovative work of eight professional fashion designers.
The fashion designers chose some very specific outlines from Korean history: each choosing a very different theme. CHOI Eudon was inspired by the Korean Giseng, the traditional professional entertainers of noble/professional men; HEO Hwan’s ‘Women who dived into the water’ explores female sacrifice in Korean history; PARK Hwan Sung is inspired by the memory of an animated television hero from his youth; CHOI Jinwoo works with the fabrics/off cuts traditionally used as table cloths or to store goods; LEE Hyun Shick was inspired by the humiliating costumes and punishments traditionally inflicted on children who wet the bed; KO Kate Yun Ju reinterprets the restrictive fashion rules of Korea and blends them with a traditional palette of colours; LEE Chung Chung’s is inspired by traditional suits of armour and KIM Jae Hwan was inspired by the fashion of 1970’s London with the traditional hats of the Joseon Dynasty.

The show also invited many participants to contribute: Illustrator Gwen LEE makes caricature of artists’ faces whilst photographers and graphic designers will also be presenting their work. The invited fashion designers worked with metaphysical subjects from Korean history and used this to inspire their collections which feature abstract patterns, shapes and silhouettes. The show is curated by Stephanie Seungmin Kim and offers the audience the opportunity to see the best the current Korean art scene in London has to offer.

Exhibiting Artists:
BAAK Je, CHOI Anna, HONG Jung-Ouk, HUR Shan, KANG Eemyun, KIM Dong Yoon, KIM Gemini, KU Hyeyoung, KWON Soon-Hak, PARK Changhwan, RYU Dai-Hyun, SHIN Gunwoo, SHIN Kiwoun, SHIN Any Hye-jung, YOON Jungu

Participating Designers:
CHOI Eudon, CHOI Jinwoo, KO Kate Yun Ju, LEE Chung Chung, KIM Jae Hwan, PARK Hwan Sung, HEO Hwan, LEE Hyun Shick,

PARK Kwan-joo (Architecture major), LEE Gwen (Illustrator), LEE Junho (Fashion Photography)

Mini Fashion Show
Thursday 30 July 7pm
The Show will feature the work of the eight Korean Fashion Designers: each having produced a new collection inspired by Korean History for the Crossfields Exhibition.

Theatrical Performance by Participating Artist Ku Hye-young
Thursday 30 July 7.30pm

Artists Forum is scheduled for September

>Pianist ‘Meehyun AHN’ Concert

7 Jul


Date: 12 July 2009 (7.30pm)
Venue: Wigmore Hall
Tickets: £18, £16, £12, £10
Telephone: 020 7935 2141
Meehyun Ahn has described as one of the leading pianists of her generation “with skilled and artistic excellence” who has been influenced by the traditional Russian school of pianism. Her solid and confident technique, honed in Russia, has been further polished by the Italian school of pianism following her studies at the renowned Imola International Piano Academy in Italy. She has performed widely in Europe, the USA and in Korea as solist, recitalist and chamber musician.

Preludes Op.32 No.12
Op.32 No.5
Op.32 No.10
Moment Musicaux Op.16 Nos.1,3,4,5,6

Sonata No.3

Prelude Op.23 No.4
Elegie Op.3 No.1 (E-flat minor)
Etude Op.39 No.1
Op.33 No.4(7). (E-flat major)

Tchaikovsky/ Pletnev
The Nutcracker

>A celebration of Korea’s finest cuisine at the KCC

5 Jul

Date: Friday 10th July; the first being held from 17:00-18:00 and the second from 19:00 – 20:00

Venue: Korean Cultural Centre, Grand Buildings, 1-3 Strand, London WC2N 5BW
Admission: Free (Booking Necessary)

As a part of this summer’s food celebrations at the KCC we are pleased to announce the forthcoming workshop revealing some of the key skills behind Korean cooking. The event will be led by popular, Korean television Chef, Un Sook Yoon.

The workshop will be split into two sessions and held in the Hall of The Korean Cultural Centre on Friday 10th July; the first being held from 17:00-18:00 and the second from 19:00 – 20:00.

Both sessions will feature:
1) A Master Class with Chef Un Sook Yoon on how to cook the legendary and most popular Korean dish, Bul-Goggi (Sweetly marinated BBQ Beef).
2) An Introduction to Kim-chi and how it can best compliment a meal.
3) Q + A session with Chef Un Sook Yoon

The master class will also be followed by a tasting session, with dishes including:
Royal Chap Chae: A noodle dish featuring Asia’s popular Glass Noodle. The noodles, sliced vegetables and beef are gently stir fried in sesame oil and served with a sweetened soy sauce. This now staple of the Korean diet was first created in the 17th century for the 15th King of the Joseon Dynasty, Gwanghaegun.

Jeon: In Korean, Jeon refers to a style of savoury pancake; Jeon as with western pancakes can include a range of ingredients according to one’s taste. Pajeon, a green onion with seafood pancake will be served along with a vegetarian alternative.
Deokbokki: Is a heated Korean rice cake and served in a hot spicy sauce, for the food tasting the dish Royal Deokbokki will be served where the spices are replaced with a sweet soy sauce.

For more information about the Introduction to Korean Cooking Workshop and to reserve your place, please contact: or phone 020 7004 2600.

>Nanta (Reviewd by Michael Leonard)

29 Jun


How often do you read a review of a show and are sceptical about it? Could it really be that good?
The only way to judge is to see it and decide for oneself. Having heard about it in Seoul over the last few years I was intrigued and was determined not to miss the opportunity. So I duly went to the ROSE THEATRE in Kingston on the 16th of June.
The storyline and instructions to the audience, in Korean and English, were projected onto a screen on the stage. Immediately the laughter began and continued right to the end of the show. The story unfolds as three unprepared cooks are informed that they have to prepare a wedding meal by six o’clock. To make matters worse the manager’s nephew is foisted on them with the instruction to teach him to cook. Thus, the mayhem starts and continues throughout the show. All the props used are kitchen utensils and equipment-very sharp knives, pots, pans, brooms etc. The accompanying rhythms add to the atmosphere. A simple concept wonderfully developed into a stage show. The skill of these athletic performers-as four cooks and the manager-is something to see. There is drumming, singing, juggling, magic, mime, martial art moves, the handling of very sharp knives and not to mention continuous humour-all this at breathtaking pace.
Normally a few well chosen words adequately describe a production but on this occasion this will not suffice.
NANTA cookin’ is vibrant, artistic, energetic, pulsating, entertaining, exciting, unforgettable, very funny and downright sensational. NANTA in Korean means “to strike relentlessly” and is an extremely apt title for the show. What memories will I take away?
The nonstop laughter of the audience, the clever use of kitchen utensils (albeit not in the usual way) and the most entertaining and dynamic performance I’ve seen for many a year.

>Byung-Yun Yu and Mami Shikimori at St. John’s Smith Square

27 Jun


My last visit to ST. JOHN’S was many years ago.
I was looking forward to it as the Thames Philharmonic-conducted by BYUNG-YUN YU and soloist MAMI SHIKIMORI-were performing.
It was also my first opportunity to listen to the orchestra.
Let me introduce the resident conductor of nine years-BYUNG-YUN YU.
He was born in South Korea and studied violin, piano, composition and conducting there.
In 1985 he was awarded a gold medal in the Korean National Conducting Competition.
In 1992 he came to England, and furthered his studies in violin and conducting, graduating from the London College of Music and Kingston University.
Among his mentors is Sir Colin Davis.
Previous conducting engagements have included the London College of Music Chamber Orchestra and even as far afield with the Karnata Symphony Orchestra in India.
Prior to the commencement of this concert at ST. JOHN’S I was able to meet BYUNG-YUN YU.
His persona gave me the impression that he is lively, agreeable and down to earth.
His performance was full of enthusiasm and energy and he seemed to be completely absorbed by the music he was conducting.
He certainly looked as if he was having fun and enjoying himself.
I mentioned this to one of the orchestra members and she wholeheartedly agreed with me that he was the spark that ignited their performances and developed their skills.
MAMI SHIKIMORI is delightful and was able to spare a few moments of her time after the concert.
She really is a talented and skilful pianist who gave an engaging performance of the Beethovan Piano Concerto No. 5 in E Flat Major, Op.73-The Emperor.
She was born in Japan and received her early piano tuition there.
In 1993 she won a scholarship to the Purcell School of Music in London.
Her studies continued at the Royal College of Music where she graduated after gaining the highest distinction of all the students graduating in 1995.
MAMI has also received numerous awards.
This was followed by being awarded a full scholarship to attend the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California.
She continues to perform in Japan and England.
Her previous performances have been in New York (Carnegie Hall) and in Italy.
I enjoyed the concert.
The orchestra, conductor (BYUNG-YUN YU) and solo artist (MAMI SHIKIMORI) need more exposure at progressively suitable venues when more performing experience can be gained.

>Contemporary Dance Performance to celebrate "The Polish Connection" (Choreography: Yong Min Cho)

19 Jun


Date: 20th/21st June & 27/28th June, 12pm
Venue: Dulwich Picture Gallery, Gallery Road, London SE21 7AD
T: 020 8693 5254
F: 020 8299 8700
Dulwich Picture Gallery will host four performances of a contemporary dance performance overtwo weekends in celebration of its new exhibition, The Polish Connection. The dance performanceis going to be developed in relation to Malinowski’s installation. Working from the 18th centuryportraits of King Stanislaw the vectors of the Polish King’s gaze are manifested as the black lines ofMalinowski’s wall drawing. These lines then will be translated into dancers’ movements. Rolf Gehlhaar’s music based on the sound of English and Polish words is going to provide therhythmic structure for the choreography. The dancers’ movements are going to be closely relatedto the specificity of the unusual spaces of the glass “cloister” and the Gallery’s gardens. Thechoreography, taking the four dancers through the inside and the outside spaces, is going to pointtowards a dreamlike travelling in time.The performance is free of charge.
Choreography: Yong Min Cho
Music: Rolf Gehlhaar
Dancers: Carlotta Bruni/ Georgiana Cavendish/ Yong Min Cho/ Karolina Kraczkowska
Costumes: Jung Yeon Chae/ Yong Min Cho