Monday, 27 September 2004

Our Great and Respected Leader: Part 3

…continued from Part 2
I was taken to the theatre three or four times during my visits to Pyongyang. The productions I saw were not only all much the same, but had been performed unchanged for decades, and are no doubt still being performed, with occasional changes of cast. They were described as revolutionary operas, and certainly had some rattling good tunes, with titles like Infinite Is the Raftsman’s Honour and Let Us Send More Rice to the People’s Revolutionary Army.
These operas were by no means monotonous, with some very lively ensemble work…

The Sea of Blood

…alternating with quieter interludes when the entire cast stands about immobile as if stricken with a palsy…

A True Daughter of the Party
(Note some interesting touches: the gentleman second from the left is NOT standing to attention, and the lady with the Sonja Henie hat has not quite succeeded in getting her feet into the first ballet position.)
continued in Part 4

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