PAMS Choice, the PAMS official showcase, introduces outstanding works of performing art by Korean artists, highlighting contemporary trends and celebrating artistic virtuosity. Selected annually in an open competition by a review panel that includes international experts, PAMS Choice finalists win the chance to be featured for the duration of PAMS and promoted at various international performing arts events. They also receive wide-ranging support to take their productions to international stages, including the ARKO-PAMS Grant, provided in partnership with ARKO to cover international airfare as well as cargo transport costs; subtitle translation support from the Literature Translation Institute of Korea; and training and consulting in strategy development for foreign market entry. From 2005 to 2015, a total of 163 works earned the PAMS Choice designation, receiving strategic support for advancement overseas and going on to great success in Asia, Oceania, the Americas and Europe.

2016 PAMS Choice

  • MARO
    (Korea Performing
    Arts Development Corp.)
    Twilight Zone
    Digital Technology embodied within Korean indigenous séance art, Kut !,
    The neo-shamanic performance

    The development of digital technology has contributed to the phenomenal enhancement of human abilities, but at the same time, it has led to increased exposure to deep digression and loneliness. Regarding the Korean seance arts, or Kut, which has eased peoples' pains for 5,000 years, the piece creates a humanistic, spiritual, and oriental digital performance through the fusion of Kut and digital technology. Six Kut performers interact with a master shaman to blend into the real and virtual worlds of Miyeoji-Baengdi, the boundary between the mortal realm and the underworld. Combining energy, mythical imaginations, and interactive projection mapping, the piece takes us to a new world where the spiritual artistry of Kut leaps into the digital-Technology, healing our sorrows and boosting the joy of our souls.

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  • Mokwha Repertory Company
    Romeo and Juliet
    Falling in love is a sin.

    Korean words and Korean movement, new methods of interpretation, Korean version of Romeo and Juliet. On their wedding night, playing hide and seek under a big blanket, a bustling banquet makes a racket with dishes and bowls, a small drum and lantern dance, full of Korean transitional 'mise-en-scé,ne uses five-color fabrics and props that cover the stage. Like the plaintive humming of a funeral ceremony, exuding music with traditional rhythms and tempos to revitalize the Korean identity. This produciton offers plenty of things to see, and demonstrates the aesthetic of traditional Korean theater.

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  • Theatre Momggol
    Bad Impulse
    Ceaseless Impulse and Desire,
    Derived from Strong Physical Movement

    Physical theater with dynamic movement, expressive of the human to revolt against society. Trembling bodies, boiling desire, a large pendulum, and a ladder intensify each scene's dramatic tension. The play presents a confrontation between two movements: one is ladder that keeps its center of gravity to stabilize itself, and the other is a human trying to maintain balance without trembling. Awakening the senses of the audience through music and movement, it converts the inner emotions of everyday life into dramatic extremes.

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  • The NEQ
    Passing Of Illusion
    Contemporary music with a Korean touch

    The group's second album, Passing of Illusion, was released in October 2015, and contains nine tracks that incorporate modern interpretations of traditional sounds such as "Moolae-Taryung," "Heung-Taryung," and "Dal-Taryung," as well as original compositions based on poems by KIM So-wol and works of Sijo (traditional three-verse poem) by Lee Jik. The album got The NEQ nominated for Best Crossover Performance and Best Crossover Album in the 13th Korean Music Awards. The band won the prize for Best Crossover Album , inspiringcritics to claim, "The NEQ's music has reached new levels of creativity by combining jazz with traditional music'.

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    Live in Saeng
    The mythological saenghwang is reborn into modern sound

    Live in Saeng begins with the awakening of a maiden in the heavens. The saenghwang, an instrument that links the past and present, is reborn through a motif of traditional Korean music that's given modern sensibility by blending it with a diverse range of instruments, resulting in a unique performance with a mythological backdrop. Live in Saeng reinterprets pieces that KIM Hyo-young has performed in the National Gugak Center's Friday Gonggam Concert series, focusing mainly on Kim's compositions and improvisations as well as pieces from PARK Gyeong-hun. The performance has received favorable reviews from Korean Cultural Centres in Shanghai, Paris, and Spain, and will be the opening performance for a Korean music festival in Germany this upcoming September. The piece will also be featured at the Hongcheon Marisori Festival in August, and at the Jeonju International Sori Festival and the Bukchon Nak-Rak concert in October.

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  • People on Stage
    Imaginative expression! Here comes a special performance

    The theme is based on Korea's traditional five colors, with a street dance for each of the five unique colors of beauty. The piece incorporates dynamic movements, music, and video technology.
    It gives the sense of the modern sense and exhibits harmony between the traditional and the modern in a new light.

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  • Kyung So Park
    The Most Beautiful Connection
    A beautiful experience that connects the performer with sounds, surrounding spaces,
    and the audience.

    The Most Beautiful Connection is a performance of gayageum (traditional Korean zither) music led by Park Kyung-so. The performers concentrate on the exchange of energy between themselves, their performance, the space, air, and light that surrounds them, the audience, and silence, attempting to connect all these elements through music. They offer the audience a multi-dimensional experience rather than a simple concert.

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  • Bereishit Dance Company
    A new combination of sports and dance

    Aggression, a primordial instinct, stays inside us and continuously needs an exit. Sports have been developed to release our violent urges. This piece embodies the symbolic meaning of sports by utilizing harmonious images of rhythm, movements and space.

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  • Sungsoo Ahn Pick-up Group
    Dance and music from the West and the East, the immixture of the two from heterogeneous origins!

    The exquisite beauty of traditional Korean dance comes from the charming curves and the movements of the inner breath. The fascination of Western dance is its extroverted, straightforward, and expressive features. These characteristics are well illustrated also in music. In traditional Korean music, the beat resonates fully with a rhythmic note. The beat in Western music is more short-lived, clearer, and melodic. Interpreting traditional Korean music using the analytical method of Western music, the choreographer carefully assembles movements that represent traditional Korean dance. Immixture, composed of six scenes, creates "visually perceptible music" by placing delicate and continuous traditional dance movements with distinctively different rhythms and dynamics. Performed as a work in progress at SIDance 2014, Immixture underwent continuous polishing and refining, and the final version successfully premiered at Theatre National de Chaillot in Paris in June 2016.

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  • Ambiguous Dance Company
    Body Concert
    Feel the energy and passion of Ambiguous Dancer Company's quintessential contemporary dance show

    How much can be relayed to the audience with only the body? We attempt to communicate with the audience through our "ambiguous dance." If we are successful, the performance will be in a state of flux. Body Concert aims to thrill.
    Body Concert was created in 2010. In the process of creation, Artistic Director Bo Ram Kim focused on defining the essence of Ambiguous Dance Company's own movements. Body Concert premiered at the Critics' Choice Awards in 2010 and won Best Performance Award at the Seoul Performing Arts Festival in the same year. Ambiguous Dance Company has gone on to receive attention in the contemporary dance scene in Seoul. Body Concert was also performed at the 2012 International Modern Dance Festival and the 2015 ASAC Body Language Festival.

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  • Yangson Project
    Factory girl
    A sharp drama woven from the actors' bodies on an empty stage

    Factory Girl is based on a short story written by YU Jin-oh. The original text was published serially in a daily newspaper, the Chosun Ilbo, over 16 times in 1931. Four actors dramatize the text as characters and narrators and form an ensemble with dancing movements and sound over representational acting. They also focus on Ok-soon's moments of struggle and inner conflict in her irrational working environment.

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  • ArtStage SAN
    Dallae Story
    Dallae's Story, far louder than words can speak-a fantasy drama that young Dallae dreams up in the midst of the fire of war

    Dallae's Story is a non-verbal performance written and directed by JO Hyun-san. It depicts the disaster of war, the importance of family, daily life, and peace through an innocent young child's eyes, in a fantasy-like fairy tale that people across generations and borders can enjoy.
    It is a work that exemplifies the effective utilization of diverse mediums, including puppets, objects, theatrical movements, traditional Korean dance and music, shadow theatre, projection, and more. Above all, it invites the viewer to experience a new theatrical world through the delicate movements of the marionette, more delicate than a real human.

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  • Lee Hee-moon Company
    Order-made Repertory 'TAM'
    A place of new music and play that could exist neither in tradition nor contemporaneity

    Order-made Repertory Tam (貪) is the third project of LEE Hee-moon Company, which has gained attention for its rule breaking, idiosyncrasies, and reinterpretation of tradition, blending contemporary sensibilities with traditional Korean sounds. Tam (貪) in Korean means "to covet," and represents the company's exploration of genre integration, namely of traditional Korean sounds and western clubbing culture. Blurring the borders between traditional sounds and techno music, theater and club, and audience member and clubgoer, their attempt proposes a place of music and play that could exist neither in tradition nor contemporaneity by juxtaposing traditional elements and modern qualities.

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  • Jeeae Lim
    New Monster
    Watching New Monster is like unwrapping a present and not wanting to rip the paper

    New Monster surveys the world by placing figures from Korean mythology, namely, a man, a fairy and a monster, into a modern landscape. The performance attempts to turn the characters into three dancers with their own points of view, in order to examine how the body is re-contextualized by the roles and meanings given it by society, and how their bodies are rendered in the borders between collectivity and individuality, tradition and modernity, human being and animal, and man and woman. New Monster spans the spectrum from a contemporary aesthetic to myth-inspired theatricality, with its overarching poetry only becoming apparent at the end.

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  • Jeon Misook Dance Company
    Is bowing merely a gesture of welcome or is there a deeper meaning behind it?

    Is bowing merely a gesture of welcome or is there a deeper meaning behind it? Bow centers on a widespread gesture in Eastern culture, an act full of beauty that shows politeness and respect. Bowing is also a reflection of hierarchy, as its angle depends on one's social position. In a performance of deconstruction, the dancers repeat the ritual ad nauseam, turning it into an onerous burden and thus questioning its raison d'être-an outrageous thing to do in East Asia.

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  • Creative VaQi
    Before After
    How do you feel about another's tragedy? Is it your pain? Or is it just the pain of someone else?

    Before After is divided into sections based on time. It shows the changes that occur before and after a devastating event.
    A time before and after is created after a tragic, irreversible event. What experiences do we go through that make us realize that an event has affected “our” lives? The play Before After begins by answering this question.
    The play uses a pivotal event in oursociety that intersects with before and after events that occur in different people’s lives. Moments in time are expressed using the theater’s emergency exit instructions, rap, a girl-group dance sequence, news broadcast, and real-time video. What happens as a point in “my” time on stage suddenly meets“your” space.

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  • Pansori Project ZA
    Excuse me
    A short pansori production based on the tales closest to our daily lives

    Excuse Me is based on writer KIM Ae-ran's short story "No Knocking in This House" and has been adapted into a traditional Korean solo pansori performance.
    Excuse Me tells the story of five women who come together in a boarding house after living their separate lives and gives a glimpse into the life of the modern-day person. These women live in an L-shaped boarding house and make efforts not to cross one other's' paths. The newest addition, Seung-ha, becomes suspicious of the women living next door, whom she has never met, after a series of minor and major incidents. However, it becomes apparent that, without even realizing it, she is living the same life as her neighbors. One day her shoes get stolen, so she secretly looks into the room next door...

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  • CHOI EunJin
    [Theory of Useful Dance]
    A Persistent Research on the Artist's Body

    Can a silent, stationary dance reach social praxis? By focusing on the possibilities of a flustered body facing such a question, Theory of Useful Dance (Yuyongmuyonglon) seeks clues to the sustenance of artistic activity. Eunjin Choi captures and accumulates the moments in which the body, unable to be accepted by the conventional pragmatism, slips away from a clear and practical purpose. During the 45-minute performance, the audience witness the process in which the body gives rise to the ironical dance from friction and conflict. Selected and sponsored by YAC of LIG Cultural Foundation in 2014, the premiere received a positive response.

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