Alliance Francaise Presents This Year’s Les Rendez-Vous de Busan

From the end of April to the end of June, Alliance Francaise of Busan will grace the city with this year’s crop of French entertainment, Les Rendez-Vous de Busan 2015.

The Goeun Photography Museum in Haeundae which so often hosts AF events is now showcasing the work of Korean photographer Gap Chul Lee, a Jinju native who is Goeun’s artist of the year.  This exhibit presents the two contradictory sides of Busan: the modern hustle-bustle on one hand, and the nostalgia for a calmer past on the other.  The show will run until May 27.

Also running till the same date is the exhibit of the photography of young French artist Julien Spiewak, who mixes taxidermized animals and parts of human bodies with various art objects in richly decorated interiors to juggle notions of presence and absence.  See here for more.

As for musical theater, Serge Barbuscia’s company will perform The Visionary Victor Hugo at Dongnae and Yeongdo Cultural Centers on the 9th and 11th of May respectively.  This event will combine music, dance and singing based on Hugo’s addresses to the French National Assembly.

Those who prefer their entertainment more abstract will want to see the Belgian company Chaliwate perform its mime drama Ilo, based on a man going to water a thirsty plant in the desert as a metaphor of the human condition.  See the same links above for its Dongnae and Yeongdo performances, and here for its Eulsuk-do Cultural Center ones.

Also in the category of abstract theater is the Dos-a-deux company’s Godot-inspired 2eme Acte, which combines dance and acrobatics with poetry.  See the Dongnae and Eulsuk-do links above for more information.

More drama in the same venues will be presented by the Interface theatrical company from francophone Switzerland.  Its performance of Teruel combines video and dance with stage acting and poetry inspired by Pierre Imhasly’s novel Rhone Saga.  Interface is famous for its intensity, aesthetics and multidisciplinarity, according to AF.  Again, check out the Dongnae and Eulsuk-do links above.

Equally off the wall is the Yann Lheureux Company’s Flag, which uses hip-hop, BMX and displacement to make the audience question its identity.  Unlike the other events, this one will take place on Haeundae beach June 13 and 14 at 8 pm.  See here for details.

Capping off all this abstruse post-modernism is a good old-fashioned Shakespeare play, The Taming of the Shrew, put on by the Franco-Italian troupe Les tetes de bois with the French title La Megere Apprivoisee.  Embellished by colorful costumes and sumptuous scenery, there will even be a noisy musician to accompany the dialog.  This will be at the Busan Cultural Center at 7:30 pm on Friday, May 1.

You don’t need to understand French to be mesmerized by one of these performances, although it helps.  AF Busan adds a totally different dimension to a city where nearly all foreign entertainment is in English.  Come one, come all!



Hal Swindall
Hal Swindall
A California native, Hal Swindall received his PhD in comparative literature from UC Riverside and has wandered East Asia as a vagabond prof ever since. He teaches English conversation, writing and presentation skills at Woosong University in Daejeon.

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