The History of Korean Western Theatre

Jaha Koo / CAMPO

M The Historyof Korean Western Theatre Jaha Koo CAMPO Leontien Allemeersch 25
  • Sat 22.01 – 20:30 – CAMPO victoria

Celebrating the cen­tena­ry of Korean the­a­tre in 2008, the South Korean the­a­tre maker / com­po­ser Jaha Koo rea­li­zed that the­re is actu­al­ly no spa­ce for Korean the­a­tre tra­di­ti­on: what is regar­ded as Korean the­a­tre is lar­ge­ly deter­mi­ned by the Western canon. But why are the South Koreans so proud of this Western inter­pre­ta­ti­on? And why does eve­ry­o­ne keep refer­ring to Shakespeare? It rai­ses ques­ti­ons about tra­di­ti­on, self-cen­sor­ship and authenticity.

In this final pie­ce of his Hamartia tri­lo­gy, Jaha Koo reso­lu­te­ly focu­ses on the futu­re. Meticulously, he expo­ses the tra­gic impact of the past on our lives, unvei­ling the small cracks in modern Confucianism — an ide­o­lo­gy that con­ti­nues to defi­ne the moral sys­tem, way of life and soci­al rela­ti­ons bet­ween gene­ra­ti­ons in South Korea. With a new gene­ra­ti­on of South Koreans in mind, he attempts to break with a tra­di­ti­on full of self-cen­sor­ship and kee­ping up appe­a­ran­ces. Because only when based on an authen­tic ver­si­on of his­to­ry, he can pass on a futu­re to the next generation.

Like the per­for­man­ces Lolling & Rolling and Cuckoo, which res­pec­ti­ve­ly focu­sed on South Korea’s past and pre­sent, The History of Korean Western Theatre is an intel­li­gent docu­men­ta­ry the­a­tre per­for­man­ce in which Jaha Koo inter­wea­ves per­so­nal sto­ries with his­to­ri­cal, poli­ti­cal and soci­o­lo­gi­cal facts. Often the­mes that con­tain a clash of Eastern and Western cul­tu­re: from cut­ting string of ton­gue to make it in the West, to the hea­vy per­so­nal toll of Western inter­fe­ren­ce on a macroeco­no­mic level.

Duration: 60 minu­tes / Korean spo­ken with Dutch and English surtitles