Sanskriti Saxena, New Delhi
The Korean Cultural Centre of India held its 10th anniversary celebration in New Delhi in the form of a Korean culture festival called Rang De Korea on 15th & 16th October, 2022. It was marked as one of the first offline events held after the long pandemic.
The entry to the event was free and it featured Korea’s representative performance contents such as Samulnori and Taekwondo, events like Korean Weddings of two couples and promotional booths of representative Korean brands such as LG, Samsung, Hyundai, Kia, KTO India, Lotte India, Orion India, Innisfree and Sazaxa.
Korea’s boyband called Kingdom performed and was one of the key features of the event on the second day – 16th October, 2022. They performed in traditional Hanbok and Western wear. It was very fascinating to watch their contrasting performances. The group consists of Dann, Arthur, Mujin, Louis, Ivan, Hwon and Jahan. They won the heart of audience by additionally interacting with the fans at the end.
The visual treat by rookie girl group, bugAboo, was also exciting and made the audience feel lost in their music. Their group consists of Choyeon, Eunchae, Yoona, Rainie, Cyan and Zin. They performed on their 2nd single album, ‘POP’ and added a dance of their b-side track, ‘Easy Move’. They also covered NCT 127’s ‘Cherry Bomb’.
The addition of K-Tigers bought a tremendous impact on the spread of global martial arts through skillfully choreographed performances and demonstrations. They increased the enthusiasm of the audience with their performances on songs by BTS, which are globally popular. Their acts also incited interest of fans in the martial arts.
The Hanbok Fashion Show directed by Samuel Chung, Vice President of the Korean Culture Promotion Association, was an informative experience of knowing varied designs of Hanbok dresses on different classes of people, mainly of the Joseon era, and on different occasions like weddings.
The performance of Korean Fusion Music band, iD, showed distinct music elements by combining and producing great music pieces. It mainly combined the traditional Korean music with the rhythm and modes of Western music which made the audience sway on their beats.
Following are some experiences shared by participants and fans who were present there:
Anushree Taparia (Samulnori Performer) – “We have been practicing Samulnori and Pungmulnori for many weeks to prepare ourselves for Rang De Korea event. It was heartening to see the audience’s reactions and praises. It was a unique experience to be a part of the event as a participant to represent the Korean cultural music by an Indian team to the Indian audiences. Apart from that, I really enjoyed my time at the fest. I was not much into K-pop, but thoroughly enjoyed watching bugAboo and Kingdom live. The K-Tigers made me a fan through their mesmerizing Taekwondo demonstration.”
CS Amratha & Kong Hyun-bin (Korean Wedding Couple) – “Our experience in the Rang de fest traditional Korean wedding (Paebaek ceremony) was quite fascinating as we couldn’t have one in Korea due to COVID 19. Even though it was a small, we missed the fun of having families and friends around us to cheer us up. We had an amazing crowd to do so now. We got a gist of how it is, especially me as we have only seen these ceremonies in Korean historical dramas.”
Anisha Sharma (Fan) – “I went with my friends who are K-pop and K-drama enthusiasts. That day was ecstatic for me. First, the performers in the flash-mob were full of energy and I danced and sang my heart out with them. Korean stalls were very unique and interesting. There were tattoo, photo-booth and Korean food stalls. My favourite one was the Hanbok rental stall where I wore the beautiful Korean traditional dress. I screamed my lungs out throughout various performances of Taekwondo, Fashion Show and K-pop groups. I was literally jumping in excitement! Really, the K-idols were very sweet and their stage presence was enthralling. I could feel their energy! The Hanbok show was magical for me. I couldn’t take my eyes off the dresses and the models. Overall, the Rang De Korea festival was very captivating and I am really thankful to KCCI for giving us a chance to experience all this.”
Vivek Pandey (Attendee) – “Attending the Rang de Korea event is marked as the best day of my life till date. I went there with my friends and to see them enjoy every activity with me. We saw the flash-mob, and with the same energy, grooved through the day. There I met fellow talented K-pop fans, and almost every person I interacted with had a unique spark in them. What I’ll remember the most is to see myself in HANBOK! That dress just took me to Korea for a moment. And on top of that, he Ramp experience…the models presenting the traditional attire of Korea was marvelous, beautiful and an overwhelming experience for me. The performances of K-Tigers, bugAboo and Kingdom are stuck in my head forever now.”
Rang De Korea event was a very diverse combination of different parts of Korean culture, giving the fans a memorable experience of Korean culture from India. It also showcased the strengthening bond of both countries. The participation of the attendees in Hanbok Wear, Calligraphy, Korean Naming, Taekwondo and many more activities, gave them a surreal view of Korean culture.