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K-pop concert hall to open today

2011/06/21 | 875 views | Permalink | Source

The Olympic Hall in Olympic Park in Seoul will reopen as a K-pop concert hall today after a one-year renovation project.
/ Courtesy of Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism

By Chung Ah-young

The Olympic Hall in Olympic Park in Seoul will reopen as a K-pop concert hall today after a one-year renovation project. The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, and the Korea Sports Promotion Foundation said the concert hall will be a cultural complex that offers not only musical facilities but also content from the past, present and future of K-pop at one place.

Located in Bangi-dong, Songpa-gu, Seoul, the concert hall will be equipped with state-of-the-art facilities including main and secondary halls, and K-pop "hallyu" (Korean wave) and K-pop music history exhibition rooms along with a music academy for singing and music lectures.

The two-story main hall has 2,452 seats for major shows and the small hall has 240 seats for underground and indie bands' performances.

The Olympic Hall had hosted numerous concerts and performances in the past because of the lack of the concert venues particularly for the K-pop musicians. However, as it was originally designed as an indoor tennis court in the first place, it had a lot of flaws as a concert hall.

For that reason, the main hall has been renovated to extend the stages in order to improve the view for the audience, and the width of the audience seats has been enlarged and revamped with comfortable fabric. Particularly, through the remodeling project, the quality of the acoustics is expected to be improved with efficient control of echo.

The small hall is intended to nurture young and aspiring musicians from diverse genres such as jazz, folk, rock and hip hop by giving them more opportunities to perform there. Both the main and small halls will be equipped with the photo zones for the hallyu stars.
The exhibition rooms will display the history of Korean modern music from the 1920s to the 2000s through 10 graphic panels and relics that represent the times. Also, the hallyu theme will be featured through high-tech gadgets such as iPads, MP3 players and kiosks to help visitors gain access to K-pop music.

To celebrate the grand opening, various artists from young idol stars to veteran trot singers will perform together. In the first part of the event, veteran singers such as Nam Jin, Patty Kim, Tae Jin-a, Hyun Chul, Song Dae-gwan and Hyun Mi will take to the stage, while Super Junior, K.R.Y, 2PM, 2NE1, 4minute, After School, Kim Gun-mo and Baek Ji-young will grace the stage in the second part. Culture, Sports and Tourism Minister Choung Byoung-gug will take part in the event.

After the opening ceremony, various festivals and special shows will continue through the end of the year. At the main hall, from the end of June to September, R-16 Korea 2011 B-Boy World Championships, "C'est Si Bon friends" concert, and K-pop music festival will be held. Also, Nam Jin, Jung Yup, YB, Air Supply and Kim Bum-soo-I will hold concerts.

At the small hall, underground bands and musicians such as the Han Sang-won Band, Kim Jong-jin and Uhm In-ho will take to the stage from the end of June to early July. Also, from July to December, an open audition program "Hello Rookie" to select promising, new indie musicians will be held every second Friday.

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