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Play Targets N. Korean Human Rights

Posted October. 04, 2006 07:08,   


“‘As ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’ changed Americans’ perceptions on slavery, we hope that tomorrow’s performance of ‘Yoduk Story’ will serve to remind the Americans of the importance of human rights violations in North Korea.”

The musical ‘Yoduk Story,’ which relates the tale of the North Korean political prison camp, will be performed for three days from October 4 (local time) at the Music Center at Strathmore located in Maryland, near Washington.

The U.S. Congress and administration recently called for the South Korean government to openly address the North Korean human rights issue.

On the occasion various communities devoted to the Korea in Washington are taking an active interest in the event.

U.S. Special Envoy for North Korean Human Rights Jay Lefkowitz and 20 key members of the State Department will attend the performance, while Victor Cha of the White House and several personnel related to the Korean issue in the State Department will also attend the event. Human rights groups in Washington and Korean newspapers admonished through their columns to “purchase tickets for Yoduk Story and express our anger and commitment towards the North Korean human rights issue.”

The reservation rate for the 1,900 seats of the center has been noted to be over 60 percent as of October 2.

Formerly from North Korea, director Jung Sung-san also invited president George W. Bush and the First Lady, but the White House announced several days ago that they were indisposed due to scheduling difficulties.

The upcoming performance had been delayed and its location changed twice due to financial difficulties.

To cut costs the forty actors and thirty staff members slept at a Korean church and only recently moved to a nearby hotel.

Jung stated in a press conference last week, “I wanted to announce the truth about North Korean human rights in Washington, the center of global politics and diplomacy,” and added “the South Korean government turned its back, but many people in Korea helped us, and politicians in Washington, Korean-Americans, and NGOs gave us support and encouragement.”

Yoduk Story performed 99 times since its debut in March, and audiences numbered more than 100,000, Jung said.

It is the 100th performance in the United States. Following this round, two more performances are scheduled in a church in New York from October 11, and six performances are lined up in Los Angeles from October 19 to 22.