묵 Silence, Sound, Meditation & Korean Omijacha

Today I stretched lunch a little and took the tube down to Oxford Circus to sample ‘A Day at the Temple’. 묵 Silence, a traditional Korean dance performance performed at the beautiful Asia House,  the stunning 1770s Grade II* listed building on New Cavendish Street.

I really did take a step back from city working life and escaped into a peaceful and gentle zone. The first performance was performed by Yong Min Cho and Jaehyun An, both Korean contemporary traditional and talented choreographers and dancers. Jaehyun played the Korean drum which was then followed by a  beautiful solo dance perfomance, where she was dressed in a flowing long sleeved white robe with a red sash and a white hood, she held two wooden sticks under her sleeves to elongate her arms when performing Seungmu. The dance is traditionally performed by Buddhist monks to show a “sense of Freedom”. One of Korea’s most famous dances. It was slow and very tranquil.
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The group were then led into two grand rooms where both performers presented two further traditional acts.

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I wish I could have taken pictures inside, the exquisite Georgian style rooms had ornate painted ceilings, marble fireplaces and incredibly handsome tall windows. It truly was an amazing place to watch something so magical.
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To end the Korean experience I sampled the delicious Omijacha or Omija hwachae the traditional pink coloured “5 flavour tea”, sticky, sweet, sour, bitter and spicy. It was garnished with delicate flower shaped pieces of pair, a refreshing drink for summer. We also got to try out some freshly made tofu bites made on the day and prepared by Korean food artist Hyungsoo Yim.

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This was my first experience into Korean food and performance and it truly was wonderful.

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