North and South Korean musicians unite in China for rare joint performance

It comes just days after South Korea said North Korea fired two suspected short-range missiles

Claire Lomas@claire_lomas
Monday 13 May 2019 15:17
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North and South Korean musicians unite in rare joint performance

In a rare joint performance, a North Korean singer and a South Korean violinist joined together on stage for the first time, amid heightened tensions between the two countries.

Violinist Won Hyung Joon, donning a white shirt, and soprano Kim Song Mi, sporting a sparkling red dress, performed Antonin Dvorak's "Songs My Mother Taught Me" together with a Chinese orchestra at the Shanghai Oriental Art Centre.

For both Won and Kim, it was their first concert with a musician from the other side of the Korean border, the world's most heavily fortified.

It’s extremely rare for musicians from both Koreas to perform together. Contact between the two sides is so restricted that North and South Koreans can’t exchange phone calls, letter or emails without special government approval.

"My heart is too full for words," Kim said.

"Because the South and North Korean sides performed together in China while holding each other's hands. At least at this moment, I feel the unification has come."

It comes just days after South Korea said North Korea fired two suspected short-range missiles, the second such weapons test by Pyongyang in less than a week.

Additional reporting from Associated Press.

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