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Bicentenary of Chile Celebrated in Seoul
Embassy of Chile Hosts Massive Cultural Event
On Sept., 2010, within the framework of the commemoration of the Bicentenary of Chile and with the sponsorship of the Seoul Global Center, it was celebrated successfully a cultural ceremony at the Yongsan Culture and Arts Theatre.

The massive event, supported by the Embassy of Chile in Korea, was attended by over 400 people, and consisted of an art exhibit, wine tasting and a concert including classical, Chilean folk and fusion music.

Among the participants of this event were the Chilean painters Regina Vergara and Raul Pizarro, the virtuoso Ukrainian violinist Marko Komonko -a Prize winner at several International Competitions and member of the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra- and the renowned Korean pianist Jong Hwa Park, also an international competitions prize winner and a professor at Seoul National University.

Prior to the concert, painters Regina Vergara and Raul Pizarro hosted a ‘Forum with the Artists’. This provided an opportunity for members from the audience to gain further insights onto the art works displayed.

Closing the concert, the audience enjoyed to Latin American Ensemble “Chi’ko”, a group formed by musicians from Chile and Korea aiming to promote Latin American music in Korea. This event will be hosted by famous commentator for KBS Radio and TV, Chang Il-Bum.

Cueca Chilena

Although Chileans have danced Cueca for decades, it was not until 1979 that it was declared the national dance. The dance has its roots on the Zamacueca, a dance that arose during the Vice Kingdom of Peru as a variation of Spanish Fandango mixed in with criollos and African influences. From Peru, it made its way to Chile where it acquired an identity of its own.

The Chilean Cueca differs from other countries in its structure .It is composed of exactly 48 measures and its lyrics are rigorously measured. It consists of 3 paragraphs, the first 2 containing 4 verses and third one called remate, due to its short length (2 rhyming verses). Each verse on the first paragraph contains 8 syllables while each verse on the second paragraph contains alternating verses of 7 and 5 syllables respectively.

The Cueca is a parody of the courtship of a chicken and rooster. The dancers wave handkerchiefs above their heads during the dance thus symbolizing the feathers of a bird or the rooster’s comb. The dance starts with a promenade where the man invites the woman to join him by offering his arm. During the dance the male dancer will court the female dancer around the dance floor without ever coming into contact. .

Marko Komonko, Violinist

Born in a family of prominent musicians, is one of the most promising young violinists in Ukraine with extremely agile technique and strong personality. He started his career when he was seven with Donezk Philharmonic Orchestra, and since then, his exciting performance drew much attention from audiences throughout the world

After studing with his father, Mr. Komonko went further with his studies with Prof. S.B.Bezrodnaya, Prof. Z.I.Mahtina and Prof. M.S Glezarova at the Central School of Music and Moscow Conservatory from 1984 to 1994. He got a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance from the Royal College of Music under the guidance of Felix Andrievsky, and since 1999, he moved to Munich to study with Olga Voitova. In year 2000 Mark Komonko was awarded a name of "Honored Artist" of Ukraine for his attribute to the music society. In 2005 he finished his study in Köln Hochschule with the highest mark, where he studied with Prof. Tretiakof

He has been invited to play regularly as a soloist with numerous orchestras in Ukraine including National Kiev Philharmonic Orchestra, Kiev Symphony Orchestra, L’viv Philharmonic Orchestra, and others. Apart from his appearances in Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Moldavia and

Russia, he has also been presented in Western Europe, (Germany, Swiss, Greece, Holland, England, Spain), South America, Korea and Japan giving solo recitals and concerts with orchestras

Mr. Komonko is a recipient of several awards, some of them including: Third Prize at the Yong Tchaikowsky International Competition., First Prize of the Musikfurderpreises, Gasteig in Muenchen, two prizes at the London Oratory International Competitiom and Second Prize at the Köln International Competition.

Since 2005, Mr. Komonko is holds the position of Associate Principal Violinist with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra.

Jong Hwa Park, Pianist

Born in Korea, started playing the piano when he was four years old. The piano would lead him into a life of journeys. His musical education as a youth was formed by such institution as the Preparatory School of the Tokyo Music College in Japan, the Sun-Hwa Music School in Korea, and the Preparatory School of the New England Conservatory in the United States.

His professional education followed at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston where he earned Bachelor’s and Master’s program with full scholarship. After the studies in Boston, he was invited to take part in the prestigious “Il Fondazione per Il Pianoforte” in Como, Italy where he could interact with eminent figures in music world as Karl Ulrich Schnabel, Dmitri Bashkirov, Fou Ts’ong, Leon Fleisher, Alicia de Larocha, and Martha Argerich. He also studied at the “Escuela Superior de Reina Sofia” in Madrid and “Hochschule für Musik un Theater”. His teachers were Russell Sherman, Dmitri Bashkirov, Joaquin Soriano, and Elisso Wirssaladze.

Mr. Park is a prize winner at the Busoni International Competition in Bolzano, the Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition in Brussels (Including Critic’s award by Pieter Andriessen), and

special prize winner of the Rubinstein International in Tel Aviv, and Santader International Piano Competition in Spain. He is also winner of national competitions throughout Korea, Japan and the USA

He has performed in famous halls such as the Koncertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Herculas saal in Munich, the Auditorio National in Madrid, and the Palais des beaux arts in Belgium. Collaborations with orchestras include the Boston Symphony, the New Hampshire Symphony, and The KBS Orchestra in Korea, Flemish National Orchestra, and Northern Holland Symphony. He holds a professorship at Seoul National University since 2007.

Latin American Ensemble CHI’KO

Since its first appearance at the 2009 Latin American Festival organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Korea (MOFAT), the Latin American Music Ensemble CHI’KO has been received to great acclaim by audiences in Seoul, Busan, Chongju and Jeju. CHI’KO has performed at several official events sponsored by the MOFAT and Embassy of Chile in Korea,including a performance at the Chong Hua De before president of Korea, Lee Myeong-Bak, and former president of Chile, Michelle Bachelet.

Formerly known as “All Ways Surprising”, the Latin American Ensemble CHI’KO is formed by musical actress Yeon Kyeong Lee (Seoul Metropolitan Musical Theater), pianist Kyungmin Kim (Kookmin University), guitarist Woong Kang (JFK Jazz Ensemble), Jin Bae Choi (EMI Artist) and by percussionist Raul Vergara (Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra).

CHI’KO aims to serve as a cultural bridge between the nations of Chile and Korea by integrating traditional and popular Latin American songs with jazz-like harmonies and appealing Latin rhythms.

The Embassy of Chile in Seoul






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