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Introducing Korea by ‘Arirang’… Hyunwoo Moon, Arirang Clown Representative2017-02-23Hit:878

Launching the Lunar New Year’s Day events in several places in New York


“We will play until the day ‘Arirang’ of our nation resonates around the world.”

Saying by Mr. Moon (photo 30), who is visiting New York.


Arirang Clown, a private cultural diplomatic delegation, has been visiting New York and Philadelphia since the 29th of last month and will be there until the 4th of the coming month.


Arirang Clown was founded by an ordinary, young man right after he graduated from university in his eagerness to save a spirit of Arirang. In a telephone interview shortly after the performance of the Arirang Choir at the ‘Democracy Prep School’ in Manhattan Harlem, Mr. Moon said, “We will hold a Korean traditional knotting performance on the 2nd and 3rd of coming month at Harlem Democracy Prep, which we will visit again in four years. He also said, “I hope students get a feeling for and understanding of Korea through the Korean Classical music (Gukak) performances on Gayageum and Haegum (Korean harps), and through Korean dance.”


Arirang Clown was founded when Mr. Moon, as a representative, visited Ho Chi Minh National University Department of Korean Language and Culture in Vietnam in 2012, the 20th anniversary forming diplomatic relations between Korea and Vietnam. Mr. Moon said, “At the time, I came up with the idea of protecting our folk song ‘Arirang’ because of China’s Northeast Asia Project.  Since Arirang was listed as a UNESCO Cultural Heritage so I started with one idea to protect Arirang.” He also said, “At first, I meant to inform the world about Arirang. Now, Arirang School, which teaches traditional Korean music, has been extended to inform others about Korea.” The purpose of adding Korean Classical music (Gukak) in the performances by Arirang Clown is to increase self-sufficiency based on the situation that more than 900 people major in Korean classical music (Gukak) in Korea every year, but there are not many stages for them.


Before the establishment of the Clown, Mr. Moon, who has traveled all over the world including such countries as Brazil and Jordan, met overseas Koreans and felt the importance of promoting Korean culture abroad. He said, “I am surprised that many Koreans want to introduce others to Korean culture.” All of the 25 Clown members who attended the New York visit came at their own expense. In addition, among the members of the Clown, people who were working came on their vacation and the students took part during their vacations as well. Mr. Moon, who is a full-time scholarship student at KAIST Social Enterprise MBA, said, “In fact, it is more and more difficult to run our organization without losing money, but we seem to have been able to run for five years with passion and value.” He also emphasized, “I have never known anything better than living like this, but now I know the real meaning of the phrase: ‘if you give up something, then you will get something more in return.’”

Immediately after the visit in last month, the Clown went on stage at the Bronx Charter School for Better Learning for the Lunar New Year’s Day events and performed Korean Classical music (Gukak). On the first day, the Clown also hosted Arirang Talk Show and a Korean culture show with 50 students of other ethnicities at the University of Drexel in Philadelphia.

Contact : Lee, Sohyun ( sohyun.c.lee@kaist.ac.kr )