|▲ Group photo session after hearing briefing about Goseong County at Goseong County city hall conference.
Diplomatic Corp's participation in the 2nd PLZ Goseong Famtour!
-The Seoul Diplomatic Corps once again shines the 2nd PLZ(Peace & Life Zone) Festival by attending in large numbers.
세계 유일 분단국가의 DMZ(비무장지대)에서 열리는 국제 뮤직페스티벌인「PLZ페스티벌」이 오는 7월 25일부터 12월 6일까지 강원도 평화지역 5개군(고성, 인제, 양구, 화천, 철원)에서 개최된다.
「PLZ페스티벌」은 DMZ(비무장지대)를 평화와 생태의 지대‘PLZ(Peace＆Life Zone)’로 새롭게 인식시키기 위한 문화 운동의 일환으로 2019년에 시작된(인제, 양구) 국제문화행사이다. DMZ 지역의 특화된 문화 콘텐츠를 재조명하고, 문화공연 취약지역에서의 문화향유 기회를 확대하는데 의의를 표명하는 장이어서 그 의미가 남다르다.
오프닝 공연은, 오는 7월 25일 토요일 18시, 우리나라 최북단에 위치하고 신라시대 지어진 고성군의‘금강산 건봉사’에서 막을 열었다.
「PLZ페스티벌」의 위촉곡으로 작곡가 김대성씨의‘평화의 기도’를 예술감독 임미정(피아노)의 연주로, 국제 하모니카 콩쿨들을 석권한 박종성의 하모니카 연주와 소프라노 오은경, 테너 김세일, 바이올린 김다미, 비올라 최은식, 첼로 김민지의 공연으로 축제의 문을 열었다.
올해 페스티벌은‘소리안의 소리여!’라는 대주제 아래 5개 군별로
▶고성(금강산 가는 길), ▶인제(꽃과 음악, 그리고 님의 침묵),
▶양구(디엠지에서 연주하는 시와 그림), ▶화천(디엠지에서 클래식을),
▶철원(그대를 위한 영원한 노래)라는 메시지를 가지고, 지역의 특색과 함께 페스티벌을 소개할 예정이다.
총 30여회의 음악회에서 김다미(바이올린), 박종성(하모니카), 제이피 조프리(반도네온) 뷔에르 앙상블, 박규희(기타), 아벨 콰르텟, 임주희(피아노), 탱고 오케스트라 띠에라, 노름마치, 이경선과 비루투오지, 강원팍스아라리, 이강호와 크누아 첼로 앙상블, 피아노 블러바드 등 정상급의 연주자들부터 발달장애 음악가들이 속한 드림위드 앙상블까지 다양하게 참여한다.
특히, 금년도 행사는 고성군 최북단 명파마을, 화천 문화예술회관, 양구 인문학박물관과 박수근미술관, 박수근광장, 인제군의 용대관광지 일원(가을꽃축제 연계) 및 철원 수도국지, 고석정 등 지역별 의미있는 명소에서 진행되며, 온라인 감상과 함께 생활 속 거리두기의 지침을 지키는 가운데 사전등록을 통해 무료로 관람할 수 있으며 행사일정 확인 및 사전등록은 PLZ페스티벌 홈페이지(www.plzfe.com)에서 할 수 있다.
PLZ festival initiated by Hansei Uni. prof. Im Mi-jeong who serves as Artistic Director of the Festival following last year's great success, contains its hope to go forward from pain's land DMZ to the peace's land.
The Seoul Diplomatic Corps. who comprised of a total of almost 50 Ambs. and senior diplomats, shared its PLZ's noble purpose which wants to connect peace, life and last but not least the future through music and arts by their one-day Goseong fam-trip, Gangwon Province on July 25th Saturday.
Diplomatic Corps. who joined this special trip, included Latvia Amb. Peteris Vaivars, Israel Amb. Chaim Choshen, Romania Amb. Mihai Ciompec & his Madame in addition to Bolivia Charge d'Affaires a.i. Luis Pablo & his spouse, Zambia Embassy deputy head mission Ms. Berina Kawandami as well as Honduras Amb's spouse Mme. Karen Sierra Garay etc., to name just important VIPs and guests among a total of 50 participants.
Following last year's PLZ festival's great success held in Yanggu County, Gangwon Province, this year's PLZ festival has been deserving great interests as an unusual & special attention and attempt in that a total of 30 music concerts & conferences will be held in 5 counties, Gangwon Province such as Cheorlwon, Yanggu, Inje, Chunchun and Hwacheon until the end of the year.
In conjuction with such attentions, Honorary Organizing Committee Mme. Irina Bokova of the 2nd PLZ Festival who served as former UNESCO Secretary General pointed out through her written congratulatory message: "The most important goal of PLZ festival is to carry out international culture campaign in regions where experienced wars and in regional societies where share PLZ's vision & missions".
Visiting Ambassadors & diplomats who joined this trip, moved from Seoul Grand Hyatt Hotel to Goseong, Gangwon Province through 2 28-seated limousine buses.
After the luncheon which were comprised of Gangwon Province's original Makguksu & several kinds of pancake, they visited first of all Goseong County as first leg of their visit to hear DMZ circumstances in its county after the detonating of the Gaesung Liason Office between the two Koreas by North Korea recently.
Goseong county showed its video for the visiting Ambs & diplomats during about 10 minutes which deals with Goseong's DMZ circumstances, its investment environment, county's origin etc. followed with some questions from participants.
Correspondent Maeng Ju-seok from UK Sky News threw a question whether Goseong County prepares any precautionary measures for the relaxation of tensions in the DMZ areas after the detonating of the Gaesung Liason Office between the two Koreas by North Korea recently.
Romania Amb. Mihai Ciompec threw a question about the location of Goseong and its origin whether Goseong is divided into two Goseongs, that is South Korea's Goseong & North Korea's Goseong like South Korea's Gangwon Province and North Korea's Gangwon Province.
Hwajinpo tour in the afternoon provided the visiting Diplomatic Corps with an opportunity to see the scenes of the Korean modern history in earnest through Korea's first President Rhee Seung-man's cottage & memorial hall. The memorial hall presents a biography of Rhee Syng-man including his accomplishments. A wide range of articles that belonged to the former President of the Republic of Korea are on display here.
Hwajinpo Lake situated adjacent to Hwapo-ri, Chodo-ri and Jukjeong-ri in Goseong-gun, Gangwon-do Province is the largest natural lake on the east coast with a circumference of 16km. Its name was given as beach roses (Rosa rugosa) bloom on the lakeside each year.
Thousands of migratory birds and the tundra swan flock to the vast field of reeds. It is surrounded by a dense pine forest that creates a striking sight, and this is why many famous people had their vacation homes nearby.
At its Hwajinpo Ecological Museum celebrating the One-Thousand-Year History of the Lake, visitors can learn about the formation process of Hwajinpo Lake, taxidermies and fossils of hundreds of species, and lifelike models in the three exhibition halls on each floor.
The highlight of the famtour for the visiting Diplomatic Corps. was the opening concert of the 2nd PLZ music festival which was held in Geombong temple in the evening.
Geonbongsa Temple, with nine branch temples, was one of the four main Buddhist temples along with Sinheungsa and Baekdamsa temples on Seoraksan Mountain. The tooth sarira of the Buddha brought over from the Tang Dynasty of China by National Preceptor Jajang and the Neungpagyo Bridge (Treasure No. 1336) in the shape of the rainbow boast over 1,000 years of history, according the chief priest.
Before its official concert, there was an official opening ceremony including speeches from Vice Governor Kim Sung-ho from Gangwon Province, County mayor Ham Myung-joon from Goseong County, Artistic Director Im Mi-jeong who organized PLZ festival from last year, and last but not least from H.E Peteris Vaivars, Latvia Amb. as the capacity of the Dean from visiting Ambs. & diplomats.
On behalf of Gangwon Province Choi Moon-soon who was not able to join because of his other engagement, Vice Governor Kim Sung-ho stressed that Gangwon Province wants to select new future even though Gangwon Province during last 7 decades was the land of war, division, anger, animosities, hostility etc.
Because anywhere in the world, such tragedy like Korean war 70 years ago must not happen no more here, music at PLZ music festival is a dedication & tribute of land, peace for the humankind and life, said Artistic Director Im Mi-jeong who initiated this festival from last year.
County mayor Ham Myung-joon from Goseong County hoped through his congratulatory greetings that 2nd PLZ festival would serve as a good opportunity to change the perception of the nation and international society, that is DMZ is a space where life and ecology are breatheing, not anymore that DMZ is being left as the most biggest pain of Korean history.
Co-sponsor Gangwon Cultural Foundation's president Gang Geum-shil who served as former Justice Minister, said as well that PLZ festival is toward the beautiful future of the human community with a spirit which wishes to change DMZ as the space of life and peace.
Last but not least, Latvia Amb. Peteris Vaivars said as the capacity of the dean from visiting Ambs. & senior diplomats: "As the Latvian Ambassador, I feel a deep sense of fellow-feeling with Korea whenever I encounter with a cultural movement like PLZ that attempts to heal the scars of war through music, art and culture." (See the speech of Latvia Amb. Peteris Vaivars at the end of this article!)
With the main concept, entitled as the Road to Geumgang Mountain, the opening concert enthralled guests with peace's prayer by Kim Dae-sung, Meditation De Thais by Jules Emile Frederic Massenet, Run Again by Harmonica Park Jong-sung, vocal music Je veux vivre from Opera Romeo et Juliette, Una furtiva lagrima from Opera L'elisir d'amore etc. and last but not least Robert Alexander Schumann's Piano Quartet in E flat major, Op. 47 performed by Piano Im Mi-jeong, Violin Kim Da-mi, Viola Choi Eun-shik and Cello Kim Min-jee.
Accidentally, the 2nd PLZ music festival started similarily with the timing of the 17th Pyengchang Daegallyung Music Festival where many oversea musicians were staged in the meanwhile during last 17 years. The 2nd PLZ music festival needs to benchmark the success story of the Pyengchang Daegallyung Music Festival so that PLZ festival can grow as a real international & global music festival, not as a mere regional music festival at the Gangwon Province, on the peninsula and last but not least needs to benchmark from oversea's famous summer music festivals such as Switzerland's Lucerne festival or Austria's Salzburg Festival etc. in terms of their success processes which have grown into an international summer festivals.
The following is a written welcoming speech from Mme. Irina Bokova, UNESCO Former Director General who serves as Honorary Organizing Committee chairwoman of the 2nd PLZ Festival. -ed.
As an Honorary Chair, I am happy to support the PLZ Festival that promotes peace, life, and hope, and aims at transforming “DMZ” to “PLZ” through art and culture.
I would like to first and foremost congratulate Gov. Choi Moon-Soon, the governor of Gangwon Province, Dr. Mijung Im, the artistic director of this festival, Ms. Kumsil Kang, special advisor and former Minister of Justice, and the mayors of Yanggu, lnje, Hwacheon, Cheorwon, and Goseong for this wonderful initiative.
2020 PLZ Festival is an extraordinary endeavor. It will host 30 different concerts and conferences at five border counties of Gangwon Province, with both in-person and online audiences. It will combine classical music and other genres of art which are in harmony with nature, becoming thus a sustainable art festival.
The most important objective of this festival is to conduct international cultural campaigns in regions that have experienced war as well as in communities that share the PLZ's vision and mission. It will also promote international interest in DMZ through participation of international organizations, ambassadors to Korea, and the Orchestre des Nations. The PLZ Festival will hold various domestic and international events to showcase the significance of DMZ Korea and will continue to promote the importance of the DMZ through music in Korea and abroad.
I am more than confident that the current global crises in politics, economy, culture, health, society, and environment can only be solved by our efforts to create peace and a sensitivity to life. The global community is in search for alternatives for a peaceful and sustainable path of development, for a new social contract that will include people and nature. What is needed today is again "the intellectual and moral solidarity of humanity" in order to bring peace, as written in the UNESCO Constitution, whose 75thanniversary we celebrate this year.
We are standing at a historic crossroad that requires us to look back, reflect on the past, and decide whether the DMZ will become a site of rampant development or a symbolic place of peace and life. The PLZ Festival will provide an important platform for that debate that will involve intellectuals, diplomats, and young people.
Last but not least, the PLZ Festival will host the International Conference for Ecozoic Culture for the Transition to Peace and Life, recognizing the unique natural environment of the DMZ, where there are hundreds of protected species and an extraordinary biodiversity. It will encourage the youth's participation, education, and involvement in the quest for harmony between nature and people.
I am particularly happy that the PLZ Festival is bringing the message of peace and life through music and art. Art represents life; it touches the past, the present, and the future; it heals and reconciles; it inspires and motivates; it educates and brings beauty to our life. Classical music, in particular, is an important medium that can remind people of the preciousness of peace and life and deliver the message "from DMZ to PLZ."
Through the PLZ Festival, the DMZ, once called the land of war wounds, is being reborn as a land of life and healing and an ecological treasure trove. As peace begins to take hold on the Korean Peninsula, the eyes of the world are trained on the DMZ. We have seen the first step toward peace and the image of the DMZ is changing. It is becoming a land of peace rather than a land of wounds, scars, and war.
This is what this festival, as a global cultural movement, is all about—dreaming and turning DMZ into Peace and Life Zone.
Irina Bokova, UNESCO Former Director General
The following is the speech by Arstic Director Im Mi-jeong at the opening ceremony of the 2nd PLZ Festival. -ed.
No need for words: Delivering the message through sound and the sound within.
The lands of Goseong, Inje, Yanggu, Hwacheon and Cheorwon in Gangwon Province have been around for a very long time. More than 70 years ago, ever since the war, this area had been called the DMZ border zone. In 2019, we started the Peace and Life Zone campaign in hopes of cleansing the area of the past and hoping for a better future, all done through festivals of music and conferences. The land that we all live on, the Korean Peninsula, has been around since the beginning of time and will remain in the future. We, on the other hand, are mortals who will inhabit this land for a brief moment in the 21st Century.
This area, well-preserved as it is bordered by the North-South DMZ, is a place of healing for all, rather than a dangerous border. Furthermore, the DMZ on the Korean Peninsula is a place that symbolizes peace for the global community, rising above the ashes of war. The PLZ Festival brings music into nature, to transform it into an area of life and peace. Imagine the fresh air, healthy trees and forests, and a place where music resonates. This image would have been a dream and unimaginable to a dying soldier 70 years ago during the intense and miserable war.
With the uncompromisable conviction that there must no longer be such a tragedy here or anywhere else in the world, music at the PLZ Festival is a tribute to peace and life for earth and mankind.
Everything came to a standstill across the globe during the first half of 2020, due to an unprecedented COVID19 virus. We had no choice but to stop the busy lives we were involved in. However, it gave us time to reflect on our spiritual home, our ways of life, the land and nature, our neighbors, humanism, and the environment, all that are deeply connected to our existence.
The 2020 PLZ Festival will showcase various music in and around the five border areas of Gangwondo province in a bid to raise awareness that if humanity is not careful, it could create a tragedy similar to the miserable deaths of more than 70 years ago, along with the purpose of showing the world the nobility hidden deep within humanity. Each county will present different themes and music, allowing it to be enjoyed by classical music enthusiasts and novices alike. What’s more, you will be accompanied by the birds and grass, the wind, stars and the moon in the sky.
We cordially invite you the land of peace and life, to come and enjoy the PLZ Festival with your loved ones, starting on a mid-summer’s night in July all the way to when the cold sets in December, 2020. Thank you.
The following is a congratulatory speech which was delivered by Latvia Amb. Peteris Vaivars on behalf of the Seoul Diplomatic Corps.-Ed.
Latvian Ambassador’s Speech on the occasion of the Goseong PLZ Festival on 25 July
Honorable Governor Choi Moon-soon from Gangwon Province,
County mayor Ham Myung-joon from Goseong County,
President Gang Geum-shil from Gangwon Cultural Foundation,
Art Director Yim Mi-jeong, Chairwoman of the 2nd PLZ Festival Organizing Committee,
Esteemed colleagues from the Diplomatic corps,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Annyeong Haseyo. Jeo neun ju han Latvia Daesa ibnida. (Hello, I am the Latvian Ambassador to Korea.)
First of all, thank you for inviting me here today to join the Goseong PLZ Festival, which is a celebration of successful transformation of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) into a “Peace & Life Zone”(PLZ) and by extension, ecological peace zone.
As the Latvian Ambassador, I feel a deep sense of fellow-feeling with Korea whenever I encounter with a cultural movement like PLZ that attempts to heal the scars of war through music, art and culture.
My country Latvia has a unique long experience in maintaining its identity through the song. For centuries, the Latvians have been occupied by the Germans, the Swedish, the Polish and the Russians and all that time singing was their expression of Latvian nationalism. Latvia's independence through this Singing Revolution was about democracy, historical redress, and national autonomy and it has made all Latvians know by heart the great power of songs.
Present day, every 5 years, Latvians are united in song and connected by dance on the occasion of the Latvian Song and Dance Festival. This has been recognized at the international level and in 2003 the Song and Dance Celebration was included in UNESCO's list of Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity for significantly contributing to the national consciousness, and to maintaining the idea of an independent Latvian nation during difficult periods of history.
I understand that the PLZ Festival incorporated music as one of the key elements with the same belief that music would function as a means of bringing peoples, communities closer together as well as its contemporary cultural and social role.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Arts and cultural programmes may not have the sole power to resolve conflict or prevent violence in and of themselves. However, their experience working in areas of conflict and fragility reveals significant evidence of the power of the arts and culture to increase the resilience of communities and provide a platform for dialogue at times of crisis. With such committed efforts made by the PLZ Festival to plant the seed of hope and peace in the DMZ, I believe that the PLZ Festival will become a notable example of using culture and music to address issues of conflicts in the world.
Last but not least, I’d like to thank all the staff of the PLZ Festival Secretariat for their hard work and commitment during the preparations of this Festival, particularly at this strange time of COVID 19. I wish you all stay safe and healthy.
Thank you, Kamsahamnida.