170626-[Immediate Release] Korea GAYOJE presented by the Korean Cultural Center New York in association with SummerStage - Final.docx

Korean Cultural Center New York presents
Korea GAYOJE: Year of the OX / SsingSsing / Coreyah in association with SummerStage

Performances blending traditional Korean sounds with glam rock, contemporary world music, and a hip hop headliner come to Central Park

Date: Monday, June 26, 2017
Time: 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm (Doors open at 5 pm / Show begins 6 pm)

New York, NY - For the first time, one of New York’s most celebrated and dynamic outdoor festivals, City Parks Foundation’s SummerStage takes on a Korean twist as the Korean Cultural Center New York and SummerStage proudly presents Korea GAYOJE ( ga-yoh-jeh , meaning ‘music festival’), blending traditional Korean sounds with glam rock, contemporary world music, and hip hop on Monday, June 26th, from 5 to 10 pm (doors at 5 pm, show at 6 pm) at Central Park’s Rumsey Playfield .

Korean artists take center stage for a summer evening at this iconic New York event, with the lineup featuring three diverse groups of artists who exemplify the focus of SummerStage: music, diversity, and community. Open to the public and free for all, the evening’s program features the “mesmerizing and wonderful” folkloric world music of Coreyah , the magnetic glam rock of SsingSsing , and the defining lyrical flow of Year of the OX .

“It’s very exciting to be able to present this lineup of some of Korea’s most exciting artists at SummerStage, one of New York’s most important performing arts festivals and also one of the most culturally diverse,” says Hyo Han, Performing Arts Director at the KCCNY. “The Korean Cultural Center New York’s mission is to share Korean culture in the most dynamic of ways, and Coreyah, SsingSsing, and Year of the Ox present just how eclectic and bold Korean music is, showcasing the lively range of sounds by these impressive artists.”

The evening will begin with Coreyah , a band that seamlessly fuses Korean traditional folkloric sounds and vocal techniques with global music influences from Balkan gypsy music to South American and African influences. Coreyah has gained international repute for being one of the most creative teams to successfully combine such diverse world music sounds. The show continues with the extravagant glam rock of SsingSsing , selected as “One of top discoveries from globalFEST 2017” by NPR for their “very glam, very rock and roll” performance and called “an irreverent but intriguing hybrid” by the New York Times . The final and headline set of the GAYOJE evening is Year of the OX , a Korean-American rap duo hailing from the East Coast. Their music that incorporates elements of hardcore mixed with their undeniably smooth lyrical flow has garnered them a growing following among both underground and mainstream listeners. Year of the OX will be joined by DJ Zo, who has imprinted himself as "a true scratch artist," and has toured with Solange Knowles, Anderson .Paak, Awkwafina, Keith Ape, Dumbfounded, and Jay Park.

City Parks Foundation’s SummerStage is New York City’s largest free outdoor performing arts festival, bringing more than 100 performances to Central Park and 15 neighborhood parks across the five boroughs. With performances ranging from indie, Afrobeat, rocksteady and soul to contemporary dance, comedy, and R&B, SummerStage reflects the diversity of cultures that coexist across the boroughs.

With this first Korea-focused program, audience of all ages and backgrounds will have a chance to hear and experience the exhilarating sounds of Korean artists.

Korea GAYOJE is presented by SummerStage and the Korean Cultural Center New York, and is supported by SORI, the Korea Arts Management Service, and Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism as part of the Traveling Korean Arts project as well as the Korean Culture Day 2017

Year of The OX (click for more)

The Year of the Ox is a rap duo with Korean roots. Comprised of two hip hop performers from Virginia, “Lyricks” and “JL,” they embody the traits of the Ox, according to the Zodiac. These include strength, familial loyalty and a strong adherence to traditions. These fundamentals all come through in their sound, which incorporates elements of hardcore mixed with a smooth lyrical flow. They pride themselves on their well thought out verses, which often encapsulate messages of empowerment for the “everyman,” shedding light on the struggles of the average person.

Their EP VOX has done remarkably well online, earning them a loyal and growing following in the underground rap world. In 2016 they released the track “Seven Rings,” which has chalked up millions of views on YouTube. They bring passion to their live shows, proudly representing the values of the hardworking rapper.

DJ Zo (click for more)

Originally from Washington DC, DJ Zo’s style shows influence from his hometown club circuit and the electronic and beat scenes of Los Angeles, his adopted city.

He has toured with Solange Knowles, Anderson .Paak, Awkwafina, and opened for Justin Timberlake, Method Man, Common, DJ Premier, and more. His scratches have been used for features from UNIQLO, the Art Institute, KENZO, Freddie Gibbs, Nipsey Hussle, and others. Not a stranger internationally, he has toured Asia several times because of his work with Keith Ape, Dumbfoundead and K-Pop artist Jay Park.

You can find him in Los Angeles at his residencies: Thursdays at Soho House West Hollywood, Fridays at Soho House Malibu, Saturdays at The LINE Hotel, and Sundays back at Soho House Malibu. Zo is the co-founder of Knockstudy, a nonprofit organization that uses DJing and MC skills to empower innercity youth.

SsingSsing (click for more)

What do you get when you mix authentic, traditional Korean vocals with rock band flare, then add in some extravagant visuals and a transfixing stage presence? You get SsingSsing, Korea’s top rock/folk fusion act. Formed when six musicians from diverse genres aligned creative forces, this eccentric band welds two totally disparate elements: rock band bravado and deep-rooted Korean folk. SsingSsing skillfully blends these styles and presents them in a contemporary and accessible context with components of ballads, pop, and spiritual rituals. Featuring Hee-moon Lee (lead vocal), Young-gyu Jang (Music Director/bass guitar), Da-hye Choo (vocal), Seung-tae Shin (vocal), Chul-hee Lee (drum), Tae-won Lee (electric guitar/keyboard), SsingSsing creates a distinctive musical atmosphere as they incorporate Korean traditional composition, such as GyeonggiSori (folk songs from central province around Seoul), SeodoSori (folk songs from northwestern provinces in North Korea), and Seoul Gut (shamanistic ritual from Seoul) in their highly nuanced and entertaining work. Called “an irreverent but intriguing hybrid” by The New York Times , and “One of top discoveries from globalFEST 2017” by NPR , this brazenly fun and enlightening band is not to be missed.

Coreyah (click for more)

There are few band across the world that so expertly meld classic, traditional instruments and vocalization with entirely modern ones as Coreyah. Indeed, their new breed of music breaks the barrier between the traditional and the contemporary. Rooted in Korean folklore, Coreyah strives to create “living Korean music” by assimilating various world music heritages, such as Anglo-American rock, Balkan gypsy, and a variety of musical genres from South America and Africa. The band is chocked full of gifted musicians, consisting of Dong-Kun Kim (daegeum, sogeum, tungso), Boyoung Ham (vocals), Halee Jeong (geomungo, yanggeum), Cho-Rong Kim (janggu, jing, kkwaenggwari), Sangheum Park (guitar) and Kyungyi (percussion). Since their 2010 debut, Coreyah has been expanding its musical domain by actively blurring the distinction between old and new. In 2011, they won the grand prize at a new Korean music competition called “Cheonchamanbyeol (all kinds of music) Concert” hosted by BukchonChangwoo Theater, and were selected for “Tune Up,” an esteemed granting program. The following year, Coreyah proved that traditional Korean music could attract just as much attention as flashy rock, when they reached the top 16 on KBS (Korean Broadcasting System)’s “Top Band II,” a band survival show. They then went on a four European country-tour, and in 2013, Coreyah received the highest mark at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. They continue to delight audiences at home and abroad.

Artist bios are from http://www.cityparksfoundation.org/event/korea-gayoje ______________________________________________________________________________

For press inquiries, contact Mickey Hyun

mickeyhyun@koreanculture.org or pr@koreanculture.org , 212-759-9550 (ext. 212)
For performance inquiries, please contact Hyo Han
hhan@koreanculture.org , 212-759- 9550 (ext. 210)

Miro Yoon