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Inaugural festival brings whole nation together

The 18th inaugural ceremony takes place with various performances on the front yard of the National Assembly on February 25, where tens of thousands of people flocked to welcome their new president (photo: Jeon Han).The inaugural ceremony takes place with various performances on the front yard of the National Assembly on February 25, where tens of thousands of people flocked to welcome their new president (photo: Jeon Han).

The presidential inaugural ceremony got fully underway on the front yard of the National Assembly on February 25. A total of 70,000 from all walks of life poured into the capital grounds to be part of the historical event.

Before the official inauguration under the banner “Opening a new era of hope,” a series of performances entertained those gathered to see the first female president of the Republic of Korea being sworn in.

Emceed by comedians from the popular TV comedy show Gag Concert, the festive event featured a chronicle of songs representing music from the 1950s to the present, which were performed by popular Korean entertainers.

The performances transcending age, social class, and region gave the feeling of a musical.

The event started off with samul nori (a genre of traditional percussion music) performed by Korea’s representative samul nori team led by Kim Deok-su.

The traditional performance was followed by performances by Korea’s famous trot singer Jang Yun-jeong, swing jazz band Mr. Brass, and a group of musical performers who sang songs from the 1950s and ‘60s, adorned in signature clothing of the time.

Korea’s acclaimed musical actor Nam Kyung-ju and singer Sonya further brightened up the mood with songs representing music from the 1970s and ‘80s.

The 1990s to 2000s songs included “I Know” by SeoTaeji and Boys, the then-heartthrobs among teen fans, and 2002 FIFA World Cup theme song “Oh, Pilseung Korea!” (which means “Go! Korea”) performed by trio idol group JYJ and a musical team of 120, sending the audience into an elated mood.

 The festival ends with a grand finale by K-pop sensation Psy who performed his songs “Champion” and “Gangnam Style” (photo: Jeon Han). The festival ends with a grand finale by K-pop sensation Psy who performed his songs “Champion” and “Gangnam Style” (photo: Jeon Han).

The excitement reached a fever pitch when global star Psy appeared as the last performer.

He performed his songs “Champion” and “Gangnam Style” with which he has shot to global fame.

“As a citizen of the proud nation of Korea, I wish the new era of hope with a new president will bring pleasant and miraculous things to all of you in the way that ’Gangnam Style’ did to me,” said Psy.

By Sohn Ji-ae
jiae5853@korea.kr

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