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Slovak-Korean cultural night

14 November 2014

Monday 3rd November we went to the “Slovak-Korean cultural night”, organised by the Korean embassy, in the Bratislava’s main opera. This event was there in order for the two countries to present each other their cultures and traditions as well as to improve the strong bond between the two countries.

In this event, each country performed their traditional dances and played their traditional instruments.         

The event started with the opening ceremony held by Mr. Park Sang-Hoon, the ambassador of Korean Republic in Slovakia, to introduce the audience what they were going to see. After that, the Slovak dancers inaugurated the evening with four traditional dances.

In our opinion the main difference between the countries’ dances were the tempos of the music and as a consequence of the dances. Slovak traditional dances have a fast and constant pace, and can be considered as active music genre. On the other hand Korean dances were slow and calm, with free movements.

Slovak traditional instruments were mostly small and easily manageable, with a softer and sweeter sound while Korea’s instruments were quite large and required the players to sit down. Korea’s instruments had more of a metallic and heavy sound, appropriate for slow and movement-focusing dance. Also what we noticed by looking at the cultures of the two countries is that they both use a special kind of equipment in their performances. Slovakia’s traditional dances included flowers and small tree branches while Korea’s traditional ballets required ancient-looking fans and colourful masks.

To stay in the clothing topic, we also noticed how the two countries wore totally different style of dresses. Slovakia used brown pants with braces, shirts, hats for boys and long red skirts, head bandanas and long earrings for the girls. Korean girls and boys were both wearing hanbok as their traditional clothing which represented their country’s culture.

What we really found impressing about the countries’ cultures is that even though there are these differences between them, they have looked only at the things they had in common to appreciate the other country’s cultural dances. These shared traditions include the performance on the stage.

The moving in Korean dance using traditional fans was similar to the one of Slovak dance using tree-branches.

That night we spectated great performances from both sides and really appreciated the actor’s efforts in propagating their own country’s cultural performances. We thought that Korea and Slovakia are somehow related and this is why the bond between them is firm and strong. Such events show friendship and good cooperation.