From November 19 to 20, 2022, the World Arirang Fair was held at the Mokseokwon Museum in the Hahoe Village in Andong, Gyeongsangbuk-do Frovince. Hosted by the Seoul Arirang Preservation Society and sponsored by the Korea Tourism Organization, it was a small but proper international festival attended by 60 people from 21 different countries of the world.
After the Itaewon incident in Seoul, it is not easy for the young people of the world to gather in a short period of time. Members were recruited until the day of departure. The target audience is CIK members.
On November 19, people gathered at the Jamsil Sports Complex Station Exit 1.
The World Arirang Fair includes ‘Mask Dance Drama,’ ‘Hahoe Village and Traditional Market,’ ‘Hanbok Experience,’ ‘Traditional Wedding,’ ‘Moon boat,’ ‘Campfire,’ and ‘Ganggangsullae group dance.’
The weather was clear and warm. Young people from all over the world wore Treditional Korean dresses, ‘Hanbok,’ and enjoyed the festival together in Korea. Originally, it was planned to experience a traditional wedding, but it became a real wedding because there was a couple to actually who got married. When the bride and groom entered, everyone stood in two lines and raised their hands high to create an arch-shaped tunnel of happiness.
Following the welcoming speech of Chairman Yoo Myung-ok, the ceremony started with Taepyeongmu Traditional Korean dance of Peace and Prosperity by Park Young-soon. Korda’s Intangible Cultural Asset No. 29 Seodosori Human Cultural Property Professor Kim Kyung-bae of Chung-Ang University, showed an exciting Korean folk song, Then there was Arirang medley by Yu Myung-ok and Kim Bok-hee, Foreigners' talent show, teacher Kim Young-so's Pansori, Professor Kim Deok's saxophone performance, Campfire, and more. Everyone danced happily to the exciting music of the song medley. It was very moving to see young people from different countries dancing together.
Not only the tourists on site, but also the people who were at the restaurant, the staff who were cooking, and the passing buses stopped and happy of saw the wonderful sight. It was also a moment to prove that the most Korean thing is the most wonderful thing. The festival was a great success in clear and warm weather, and it was a happy memory to everyone.
The Seoul Arirang Preservation Association appointed ten people as Arirang public relations ambassadors, and on the spot selected five persons and gave them ‘Best Traditional Costumes Prizes.’ The happy young people, the hosting staff, and the performers were all good civilian diplomats.
For those who are happy with unfamiliar experiences in a foreign country, Arirang was the site of the tourism industry, great diplomacy, and healing experience.
While the young people were riding the Moonboat, Koreans held an academic conference entitled “Proposal for the World Dissemination of UNESCO Registered Arirang” by zoom at the Mokseokwon Museum. Professor Kim Kyung-bae led the keynote speech by Chairman Yoo Myung-ok of Seoul Arirang, followed by a panel by Chairman Lee Hong-cheol of the Future Strategy Special Committee of the National Assembly Constitutional Association of Korea.
In the proposal for the global distribution of Arirang, the chairman of the Seoul Arirang Preservation Association introduced an anecdote about the efforts made at the National Assembly to pass the bill to designate Arirang as Korean Intangible Cultural Property, and first made Arirang a national brand,
Second, Seoul Arirang, the center of all Arirang songs, was designated as a preserved cultural heritage of Seoul, and a legal basis for protecting and fostering high value-added intangible cultural heritage with a sense of ownership was requested.
The third one was Arirang's nature-friendly cultural marketing, and it was proposed to make the historical and artistic aspects of K-culture into MICE contents that are accessible to the public, and to include Arirang in the spirit of Hongik (spreading of Benevolence) in the festival and make it a good memory.
Then, thanks to the changed enforcement ordinance of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the future of Arirang will be bright, and he quoted Kim Gu's words, 'Do not become a country that imitates others, but become the source and goal of a new culture,' and French economist Jacques Attali’s words, ‘Seoul of Korea will become the capital of the Asian Allied Powers in 2050,’ and American Goldman Sachs’s word ‘In 2050, Korea will become the world’s second-largest national income.’ In the end of the speech, he concluded with a blessing for a healthy and happy cultural Republic of Korea.
In parting with the enthusiastic foreign young people who welcomed him with applause, he said, 'Next year, come married, come with your children, 10 years later, become a diplomat or consul, and another 10 years later, become an ambassador to Korea.' A beautiful festival ended. They are already good ambassadors for Arirang, and this festival was the start of a very exemplary global cultural marketing.