iL-Bak-i-iL (1night,2 days): Hahoe Mask Dance Drama

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Before leaving the village, we had the chance to watch the Hahoe Mask Dance Drama which is one of Korea's most traditional folk plays. It was believed that one should watch this drama at least once in his lifetime or he won't go to heaven (sigh* glad I was able to see it!lol)

The villagers before performed this drama to please their local goddess and exorcise evil spirits. It was also their way of praying for abundant harvest, peace and prosperity.

The characters in the drama also represent social classes which were satirized to relieve the social tension among the families in the village.

The young lady dancing on the shoulder represents the local goddess. She was asking the people to make offerings for their blessings and wealth.

They were the male and female Juji (lion) dancing and playfully fighting.

And they were the ones giving some groove to the drama,lol. They provide the sound effect kumbaga!lol with traditional Korean instruments.

The big brown bull which forgot its manners!lol tama bang magweewee?!lol It was fun, though.. not the bull but the reaction of the audience:)

A butcher killed the bull and took out its heart and cut out its testicles. He then asked the spectators to buy them... anyone? errrrr... no thanks!:)

I love this character! Her "grandmother dance" was so funny!lol (What's a grandmother dance anyway? Actually, i just made it up. I guess it's the way I've seen a grandmother dances!lol) Anyway, she portrays a granny who became a widow three days after her wedding at the age of 14! And that's a hand loom with her. This act showed the conflict among social classes and the pain of life for common people.

And she was the treasurer i guess?lol

The man was a wandering monk who got attracted to a young lady. He caught her peeing and even smelled her pee when she was gone... seriously!lol This act criticized the corruption in religion of their time.

These three represented the scholar, the fool and the busybody.

This was the most interesting part: seeing the "Man in the WOODEN Mask"! lol There was only one woman in the cast. Most parts were portrayed by men.

The thing that I noticed the most though was the enthusiasm of the crowd. There were many foreigners, yes. But I noticed there were more Koreans in the audience. It was just amazing to see the Korean people's appreciation of what they call their own. I know I wouldn't be THAT enthusiastic while watching "balagtasan" or hearing a "kundiman". (see the attitude? i hope my country doesn't make me an exile!lol) But I know it's still something that we Filipinos should work on.


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