When the curtain rises, young talented Korean American performers sing, dance, and act, presenting their interpretation of Korean Culture. Right at the moment you start to think of the show as a culturally themed musical, a group of drummers enter the stage with Korean drums, with B-boys dancing to the beat and fan-dancers blooming flowers with their fans. As the curtain falls, you are left with a deeper message uncovered through the juxtaposition of Korean culture and history.
Korean Culture Night is the largest Korean American student-run production that has strived to bring diversity to UCLA campus for the past 24 years. Integrating drama, modern dancing, Poongmul (traditional Korean drumming), B-boy break dancing, and traditional fan dancing, performers bring various historic and cultural theme on stage.
For the past 24 years, different cultural themes and moments of Korean history, such as the Korean War or the struggle of 1st generation Korean American immigrants, were put on stages with more than 1,800 audiences coming to see each performance.
This year, KCN is to explore the definition of being Korean through the struggles of ‘Comfort Women,’ which is a euphemism that refers to women and girls who were forced into sexual slavery by the Imperial Japanese Army before and during WWII. Through this proudly yet carefully constructed musical, student performers are expected to shed light on the horrific narrations of the few women who survived and endured such brutalities.
Korean Culture Night 2016: When You Kill A Butterfly will be held in Royce Hall on Thursday April 7th. Visit https://spark.ucla.edu/project/1573 for more information about the show.
By Heewon Kim