Interview with Chunghan Kim, Director and Choreographer of ‘Lotus, A Flower Comes Out Once More’

[Interview : Junghan Kim, Director/ Choreographer]

I met Chunghan Kim, the director and Choreographer
of <Lotus, A Flower Comes Out Once More>
2017 Jeongdong Theater Tradition Series.

Q. Please talk about the title and the concept of <Lotus,>.

The title <Lotus> came from the name of the protagonist, ‘Seo-ryeon’.
(‘Ryeon’ literally means ‘Lotus’ in Korean language.)

The story borrow its motif from ‘the tale of Mrs Domi’ of the period of three stages in Korea
and ‘Igongbonpuri’ , a shamanic tale from Jeju Island.

The main characters are the King and his man, general ‘Dodam’ and dancer ‘Seo-ryeon’.

‘Seo-ryeon’ is a important character of the story as she receive the loves from the King and Dodam at the same time.

Dodam and Seo-ryeon confirmed their love and it is reason why relationship of the king and Dodam has problem.

The tension from the triangle love is the main concept of this performance.

Q. What is the symbol of the subtitle,
‘A flower Comes Out Once More’?

The king is a character who let Seo-ryeon in for pain and difficulties using his power.

However, she protects her self from the power.

I would like to deliver two messages through this story.

First, the King who uses his power in incorrect way is very similar with our social situation.

There are many people who got hurt from it.

Therefore I wish the people get more hope and comport from the reincarnation of Seo-ryeon.

Second, I would like to talk about ‘Love’ and the beauty of Seo-ryeon
through the character of a woman who keep the beauty her self against the power of the king.

​Q. What is the meaning of ‘Love’
that you want to describe in this performance?

I think ‘Love’ does not consist of only one emotion.

‘Love’ contains Sorrow, Missing, Frustration and sometimes pain.

Therefore, Love contains various kinds of story in there.

The complex of every emotion is ‘Love’.

I would like to present various kinds of ‘Love’ through the love of Seo-ryeon.

​Q. I can feel your love toward ‘Seo-ryeon’ from your talking.

What Do you think the attraction of ‘Seo-ryeon’ is?

As I mentioned before, Seo-ryeon is a character who is the best dancer in the court
so she have lots of artistic value such as singing, dancing and playing instruments.

In this performance, I expect that the audience could fee the best beauty of the Korean traditional dance.

Q. How do you like your position,
the director and the choreographer at the same time?

It has been more than 10 year that I work as a director.
Normally, directors of drama theater take part as the director of dance drama
but I think there is a gap of a veiw between the theater director and the choreographer.

As the main element of description in <Lotus,> is ‘Korean traditional Dance’,
I did my best to raise the completion presenting the scene directed by a choreographer.

Through this performance, I would like to present my own directing style.

Q. What do you think  what your style is? 

Every work that I have directed contains ‘Love story’.

Mainly I present the love like triangle love to put the conflict.

Also, the directing style of ending scene, I keep it my self.

Q. What is the popularity of the tradition from the style of Chunghan Kim?

I think the communication is the most important thing to have popularity.

We don’t need to make the performance difficult to understand.

There are many performance of dance which is difficult to understand, but it is reason why the dance drama could not be popular
because the audience could not communicate with the performance.

Therefore I make the drama which can be felt the sympathy easily putting the ‘love’ which always can be shared with all.

Q. As this performance is one of the Jeongdong theater Tradition Sereis,
You also take care about the foreign audiences.

It is of course to have the foreign audiences in mind for the Jeongdong Theater work.

Especially in order to make the foriegners fee comportable,
I tried to transform the tradition in the range of not giving the damage to the original one.
In the part of the music, I also make the tempo fast which was originally slow beat.

If you come to Korean and see this performance <Lotus,>,
you can enjoy and feel the beauty of the Korean traditional culture.

The stage set which has background of the palace and the traditional costumes will show you the pick of the colorful Korean tradition
and through the Korean traditional music and court dance, you can feel the essence of the Korean traditional culture.

Q.How was the collaboration with the staffs
in charge of music, stage and costume?

In this work, most of staffs are my colleagues who have worked with me for many times.
Therefore, we have trust to each others so there was any difficulties.

Q. What is your best scene is <Lotus,>?

The last scene. When you see the scene where seo-ryeon revived, you can feel your heart bleeding

As the scene is the most important part of the performance, we set to the rehearsal at the first time as well as have rehearsal many time. Therefore I love this last scene.

Q. What do you think the viewing point ?

I produced this performance laying emphasis on the tradition. 

Through this chance, I wish that many audiences could know about the Korean traditional music instruments more
and could feel the beauty of the traditional costume.

I tried to complete it through exhaustive research

therefore, it contains every Korean tradition in the valance of the tradition studies and the creation.

I hope that it can be a enough study on the Korean traditional culture
when you not just follow the story but also observe the costumes, instruments and stage set.

Interviewer _ Seokryu Chang (Chief of Marketing Dept.)
Arrangement_Jeongdong Press Minji Kim

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