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World Music Festival to unite cultures

Nineteen bands comprising world-renowned musicians from 12 countries will gather to perform at the One World Music Festival at Seolbong Park in Icheon, Gyeonggi Province.

The festival is Asia's biggest international music event bringing together world-class musicians from Brazil, Cuba and Senegal to Norway.

Under the theme of ``Sharing & Caring with Music,'' the event is presented by the Arts Council Korea and funded by the Prime Minister's Lottery Commission.

The festival is designed to encourage cultural exchange between countries through various kinds of music and at the same time bring the underprivileged into music.

The event will offer a rare opportunity for Koreans to enjoy various multi-cultural genres.

Top-notch artists such as Ivan Lins and Jorge Aragao from Brazil, Los Van Van and Vocal Sampling from Cuba, Ismael Lo from Senegal, and the group Los Andes, comprised of four Ecuadorians and one Korean, will join the festival.

Ivan Lins is a world-renowned performer and songwriter of Brazilian popular music and jazz for over 30 years.

Jorge Aragao is a master of samba, who contributes to the popularity of samba.

Los Van Van is a Cuban band led by bassist Juan Formell, and is considered to be one of Cuba's major timba acts, while Juan Formell has arguably become the most important figure in contemporary Cuban music.

Ismael Lo is a Senegalian versatile singer and artist along with Youssou N'dour. Besides his singing abilities, he also plays the guitar and the harmonica. In the 1970s, Lo studied at the School of Art in Dakar, later joining the popular group Super Diamono but leaving them in 1984 to start a solo career.

For the three-day festival, Asian musicians such as Viet Duo from Vietnam which plays Vietnamese traditional instrument Dan Bau and Dan Tranh and Yangon Quartet from Myanmar who plays its traditional instruments _ Saung (harp), Pattala (xylophone), Saing Waing (drums) and Palwe (wind-blowing instrument), will perform their traditional folk music.

Also, Korean artists such as Kim Soo-chul, Yoon Sang and Jung Min-a will grace the stage.

In the festival, Yoon will give a comeback performance after a four-year hiatus in studying music synthesis at Berklee College of Music in the United States.

``I began to indulge in the world music such as South American music in the mid-1990s. I am very excited to perform with world top-notch musicians like Ivan Lins together on stage,'' Yoon said in the press conference last week.

As the festival's title suggests, all proceeds from the ticket sales will be used to help the underprivileged.

Tickets cost from 5,000 won for children and 10,000 won for adults for the one-day participation, to 15,000 won to 30,000 won for all three days.

Source: By By Chung Ah-young, The Korea Times

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