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Pansori Storytelling

WHAT IS PANSORI?

The meaning and history behind 'Pansori' and how storytelling started in Korea

THE MEANING OF PANSORI

‘’Pansori’’ is a traditional performing art performed by a singer and a drummer. The singer does not simply sing a song, but, rather, delivers a story with narratives and gestures with live drum accompaniment. ‘’Pansori’’ is comprised of ‘’pan’’ and ‘’sori’’. ‘’Pan’’ meant “a place where people gather, and ‘’sori’’ meant, generally, “songs” in old times. Therefore, ‘’pansori’’ can be said to be songs are sung in gatherings. In that sense, Pansori is a form of musical storytelling. It is rich in music and contains sung passages or narration.

THE HISTORY OF PANSORI

Pansori originated from muga, shamanistic songs, and pannorum, non-ritualistic public entertainment. Pansori originated in the 17th century and a more mature form emerged in the 18th century; the 19th century is considered the golden age of Pansori. There were 12 stories, unfortunately only five stories (Chunhyang-ga, Simcheong-ga, Heungbo-ga, Sugung-ga, and Jeokbyeok-ga) have survived.

PANSORI STORYTELLING CONCERT

Pansori being a musical way of storytelling, audiences enjoy the narrator’s songs, dance and gestures. What makes Pansori storytelling distinctive is that the story comes ‘alive’ through the narrator’s voice. It is a dynamic interaction between the singer/narrator and the listener. The singer/ narrator uses voice and movement to tell the story. The listeners create mental images of the story’s events. They smile or frown, the singer/narrator responds, and the story evolves. The singer/narrator and listeners bring their own experiences and prior knowledge to the story and each takes away a unique interpretation of a story.

Hence, we can say that Pansori is the core of traditional Korean music that has now been transmit- ted into the popular Korean Culture (K-Pop). With the K-Wave arising and as a storyteller, Seung Ah combines Pansori with western storytelling techniques that brings out a new style of her own that captivates her audiences.

Arirang Storytelling Concert Troupe

MEET SEUNG AH'S TEAM

KIM HYUN SEOB

MUSIC DIRECTOR/PIANIST

CHO HAN MIN

DRUMMER

SEO EUI CHUL

PANSORI