The Kingston Korean Festival returns for a second year following the success of the previous Autumn Full Moon Festival held in Kingston. This year, the Kingston Korean Festival will run two main programmes to celebrate Korean culture and engage with the British people in many ways.
One of the programmes will be the Exhibition ‘Dol’ which will showcase a Korean baby’s first birthday celebration. The exhibition will be running at the Kingston Museum from the 31st of August to the 3rd of October! At the exhibition, there will be a set of beautiful Korean traditional dress (hanbok) designated to one-year old boys and girls along with a table for the ‘Doljabee’ ceremony. The ‘Doljabee’ ceremony is the main celebration for ‘Dol’ whereby the one-year old baby selects an item from the table. Each item on the table symbolises different talents and skills. The item which is picked by the baby is said to determine the baby’s future.
Alongside the Exhibition, there will be Community Fest included in the Kingston Korean Festival programme! The Community Fest will be hosted on the Saturday the 16th of September at the Kingston Ancient Marketplace. The Community Fest will hold a number of activities, ranging from performances from numerous acts e.g. the Gilnori parade, where a number of participants will be parading around in masks along to music to open the festival. There will also be a range of K-Pop vocal and dance performances at the community stage! On the other hand, there will be hapkido demonstrations along with traditional music performances such as the gayageum ensemble and samulnori bridge!
If you’re interested in food, there will also be a cooking demonstration by Chef Sharky Yoon (the managing director of Mr. Kimchi and a Korean food developer in the UK), where he will be demonstrating to the audience how to make kimchi!
Other than performances and demonstrations, there will be various participation activities such as the folk game ‘jaegi-chagi’. The ‘jaegi-chagi’ is a traditional Korean game which is predominately played outdoors. The ‘jaegi’ which is similar to a shuttlecock, made out of paper is kicked between the players in the air, with the aim to keep it off the ground. Along with the ‘jaegi-chagi’ there will craft stalls where you will have the chance to make your very own paper flowers and lanterns.
One of the most unique activities available to participate in, is the Artrash activity. Seyoung Jang (the creator of Artrash, and a Korean artist) will be collaborating with the Environmental department of Kingston to encourage people to bring in pieces of rubbish which they may have collected throughout the day, to create art. Children who bring in their rubbish will be given a token which can be exchanged for face painting or one of the educational programmes held on the day.
There will also be some traditional activities which will allow participation, ranging from trying on hanboks, to the one-year old baby’s Doljabee ceremony. At the Community Fest, there will be a special Doljabee ceremony held specifically for one-year old babies to see what future is said to be held for them based on what they’ve selected from the table. For the hanboks, children from 9 to 15 will have the opportunity to dress themselves up in traditional Korean dress.
For more information regarding the upcoming Kingston Korean Festival, feel free to check out the programme brochure below:
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The Korean British Cultural Exchange is a newly-founded non-profit organisation set up to organise cultural and educational activities to promote Korean culture in the UK. The aim is to help better understand each other and build a better community together through artistic collaboration and creativity.