Bangladesh and Korea have enjoyed friendly relations for four decades now, and in recent years, the relations have expanded beyond diplomatic tables and into the cultural arena. As part of celebrating 40 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries, the Korean Embassy in Dhaka has been organising a series of cultural events under the title “Charm of Korea”, the fourth installment of which -- titled “Dream of Music”, was held on May 6 at the Bashundhara Convention Centre-2 in the city.
Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali attended the concert as chief guest, along with Dr. Gowher Rizvi, advisor to the Prime Minister as Special Guest. Among others, lawmakers, high-ranking government officials and members of the diplomatic corps were in attendance at the event.
Lee Yun-young, the Korean Ambassador to Bangladesh welcomed all at the event, saying he is convinced that through the success of these musical events, the two countries could come closer by the power of culture, further boosting bilateral friendship. Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, Dr. Gowher Rizvi and Bangladesh's goodwill ambassador to Korea, actress Nusrat Imrose Tisha and Cotton Group chairman Shaheen Mahmood also spoke at the event.
The musical performances set off with a jazz performance by Korean jazz quartet Prelude, that first performed a number titled “Fly Away”, in a somewhat Asian-flavoured tune in a jazzy arrangement, followed by a more marching-band style composition titled “12th Street Rag”. The audience seemed to greatly enjoy both the performances.
Two opera performances followed. Mezzo-Soprano vocalist Elizabeth Park, attired in a beautiful red dress, walked from among the audience, carrying flowers that she handed to members of the audience while singing a composition by Georges Bizet. She was followed by a tenor vocalist Sungwon Jin, performing a composition by Italian virtuoso Guiseppe Verdi. Park performed another solo (with pianist Bohyun Lim) titled “Where low cloud passing”, while Jin performed “Wishing to return to my hometown”. The two artistes then sang a duet, followed by two more jazz numbers by Prelude, “Pop Up” and “Milyang Arirang”, followed by the vocalists joining them for a medley of three songs and a film song “Nella Fantasia” from Korean film “The Mission”.
The same event was held again on May 8 at the Kurmitola Golf Club, with expatriates welfare minister Khandker Mosharraf Hossain and cultural minister Asaduzzaman Noor in attendance.