Throughout the entire month of July, actors and musical performers have gathered from all over California to reenact Shakespeare’s famous play, The Tempest. Unlike any other Shakespearean play, this performance is not set in England but has included many scenes that take place in Korea and other countries in East Asia.
From lanterns and the Chinese New Year dragon to a team of Korean traditional performers, the play displays numerous Asian cultures. The Korean traditional performers, who play a key role, add beauty and suspense to the show through a Korean fan dance as well as thunderous drum performances. Along with the traditional performances, famous Korean songs such as “Arirang” are sung by the actors.
During the grand opening on July 15, the play and its actors were met with a standing ovation and a roaring applause. Many of the audience members had never been exposed to Korean culture prior to the event and were completely awestruck by its beauty.
James Kim shared his experience as an audience member: “I was completely immersed into the play the entire time! I fell in love with the amazing actors who acted out The Tempest and the performers who came onstage with bright, colorful Korean clothing. I would definitely recommend this to all my acquaintances.”
Tiffany Yoon, a performer, exclaimed, “Before every show all the actors and performers stand in a circle holding hand cheering each other on and wishing each other good luck. While looking around the circle I realized the talented individuals that I would have never met if I didn’t participate in the show. The twelve hour practices and tiring rehearsal were all worth it because we ended up as one big family!”
The Tempest was shown every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday throughout July at the Garden Grove Amphitheater.