MUSCAT: The beauty of classical Western ballet and music are united with a traditional Korean romance in the Universal Ballet of Korea’s production of The Love of Chunhyang, which will be performed at the Royal Opera House Muscat (ROHM) on April 16 and 17.

The Love of Chunhyang is the story of the beautiful Chunhyang, the daughter of a Kisaeng (female entertainer), who is in love with Mongryong, the son of a local aristocrat. When Mongryong has to move to the capital with his family, the new governor tries to force Chunhyang to be his entertainer. Her love for Mongryong is too deep, so she refuses. She is tortured, imprisoned, and sentenced to death for disrespecting the governor, but Mongryong returns just in time to save her.

The ballet, which gives ballet lovers a chance to admire Korean culture, was originally created in 2007, based on a libretto by Bo Hi Pak, and adapted in 2009. The choreography is by Brian Yoo, based on a production by Jung-hye Bae. The music is by Pyotr Tchaikovsky, arranged for the Universal Ballet by Fumiyo Motoyama.

The role of Chunhyang will be danced by Hyemin Hwang on April 16 and Misun Kang on 17. Mongryong is danced by Jaeyong Ohm (16) and Dongtak Lee (17), while Governor Pyun is danced by Jiadi Dong (16) and Taeseok Kim (17).

Umberto Fanni, ROHM’s acting director general and artistic director said, “This is a stunning production that brings the best elements of ballet, such as the romantic pas de deux, ballet solos, and corps de ballet dances to a rich Far Eastern culture. We are thrilled to have the Universal Ballet of Korea return to our stage, following their triumphant debut here in 2011.”

The Universal Ballet of Korea was founded in 1984. The company is based in Seoul, South Korea. The dancers and staff hail from over a dozen countries in Europe, North America and Asia.

The Love of Chunhyang will be performed for two nights on April 16 and 17 at 7.30pm.

SOURCE: Muscat Daily