FULL Korean Choral Symphony (Han Ah-reum) Seoul 2023 Choi Jeong-won, Songmi Yang, Hyojong Kim, Kim Dong-seop
Information on the Performance
- Work Title: Korean Choral Symphony
- Composer: Han Ah-reum
- Venue & Opera Company: National Arts CCenter, Seoul, South Korea
- Recorded: March 21, 2023
- Type: Concert Live
- Singers: Choi Jeong-won, Songmi Yang, Hyojong Kim, Kim Dong-seop
- Conductor: Yoon Eui-joong
- Orchestra: Gwacheon City Symphony Orchestra
- Chorus: Gwangmyeong City Choir, Dongducheon City Choir
- Stage Director:
- Costume Designer:
Information about the Recording
- Published by: TomatoClassic
- Date Published: 2023
- Format: Streaming
- Quality Video: 4 Audio:4
- Subtitles: nosubs
- Video Recording from: YouTube     FULL VIDEO
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON THIS PERFORMANCE
Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the founding of the National Choir
Korean Choral Symphony
It is a symphony in which Korean history, poetry, music, and sayings are melted into the lyrics of the chorus.
In general, ‘choral symphony’ refers to Beethoven’s 9th symphony. Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, composed in 1824, does not originally have a subtitle, but it is called a ‘choral symphony’ because it includes solo voices and choruses such as the famous ‘Ode to Joy’. On the other hand, the ‘Korean Choral Symphony’ depicts the theme ‘Korea’ that runs through the whole as only ‘chorus’. Among the lyrics, poet Yoon Dong-ju’s ‘Foreword’ also appears.
According to Han Ah-reum, a former composer of the National Choir, “This song was created to spread our musical and cultural capabilities as a global language called classical music.” He said, “Each movement has its own characteristics, and we tried to achieve a degree of perfection that allows individual movements to be played separately.” He said, “I put my heart into it so that it can be played steadily around the world in the future.” The subtitles of movements 1 to 4 are ‘Korean History’, ‘Korean Poetry’, ‘Arirang Suite’ and ‘Korean Dream’, respectively.
The theme motif that encompasses the whole is ‘Arirang’. Arirang appears as a whole melody or a part of it appears in various variations. It appears as a familiar melody that anyone can sing along to, while adding variations to the rhythm and key here and there adds freshness and variety.
Composer Han Ah-reum graduated from Hanyang University Graduate School of Composition and PhD at West Virginia University of Music in the United States. Previously, she participated in works such as ‘Arirang Fantasia’ by the National Choir and ‘The Four Seasons of Korea – Korean Gagok of Memories’, an orchestral arrangement of Korean songs, and presented several classical works that incorporated Korean elements. One composer said, “It is a difficult but fun task to express Korean things in classical music, an international language.”
While it is possible to express the beauty of Korea directly using traditional musical instruments and within the framework of tonal music, one composer said, “I have been thinking about ways to spread our music more widely in line with the emotions of people around the world.” The choir also mentioned the meaning of this performance. “We will remember our ancestors who sacrificed themselves to protect our country in a turbulent era, and deliver a message of hope to create a new Republic of Korea with national spirit and pride.”
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