For me, shows like this are what the Festival’s all about. Arirang Party gives us a privileged glimpse at a different country’s culture, music and dance – and at the same time provides uplifting and colourful entertainment.
Performed by a mixed troupe of dancers, martial artists and percussionists (the show features Choi So-Ri, apparently a drummer of international reknown), Arirang Party is the kind of show that has you smiling broadly from start to finish. Whether it is the sublime grace and beauty of the fan dancers, the impressive high-kicking feats of the balloon-busting martial artist or the amazing percussion skills of So-Ri and his cohorts, this is wonderful stuff throughout.
And, as with previous world music type shows such as this, the performers’ sense of enjoyment and pride is as pervasive as the sights and sounds on stage. It seems a shame then that shows like these play to small audiences in modest venues, whilst so-called superstar comedians play to thousands every night in the grandest halls Edinburgh has to offer.
You can forget your sell-out shows – give me an Arirang Party every time.