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Gunsan City invites Airmen to Summer Classic Concert

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt. Trisha Eldredge
  • 8th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Gunsan City invited Kunsan AB personnel to enjoy a night at the Summer Classic Concert here Aug. 18, providing free tickets to active duty Airmen and their spouses.

The Gunsan City Cultural Center once again hosted the monthly event, to which approximately 1,000 people attended, including 50 Wolf Pack Airmen.

The performance highlighted violinists Kim Gwang-Gun and Song Jae-Gwang, led by conductor Jung Nak-Bok. Jung graduated from Seoul National University and has conducted the orchestra since 2009.

1st Lt. Casey Butikofer, Airfield Operations Flight director of operations, attended the orchestra performance for the second time since being stationed in Korea.

"All of the performers were excellent," Butikofer said. "I found the Gunsan City Orchestra to be very entertaining."

The performance opened with "Symphonic Poem Finlandia, Op. 26" by J. Sibelius, a song that praises the beauty of Finland and sought to inspire patriotism during Russian oppression.

"I have been to a few symphony performances here and in the States and the professionalism and talent of the Gunsan City Orchestra really impress me," said Capt. Aileen Bailey, 8th Logistics Readiness Squadron Materiel Management flight commander. "They performed the first song beautifully."

The opening piece was followed by "Concerto for 2 Violins in D Minor BWV 1043," by Johan Sebastian Bach and highlighted two violins playing together.

Following the intermission, the orchestra performed "El Sombrero de Tres Picos, Ballet in two parts," by Manuel de Falla. The ballet is based on a novel by Spanish writer, Pedro Antonio de Alarcon, about a mayor who becomes infatuated with a miller's wife and tries to seduce her. The first part features the "Afternoon" and the "Fandango (Dance of the Miller's Wife)." The second part features "Seguidillas (Neighbor's Dance)," Farruca (Miller's Dance)," "Corregidor's Dance" and the "Final Dance."

Senior Airman Derrick Schwieters, 8th Fighter Wing chaplain assistant, enjoyed the performace as well.

"I thought it was a very beautiful performance," Schwieters said. "The performance was more entertaining than I expected. It was my first orchestra that I've been to, and I would love to attend more in the future."

The Gunsan City Orchestra is just one of the many ways to increase Korean cultural awareness and be an ambassador to Kunsan's Republic of Korea neighbors. Butikofer also thought the orchestra was a good chance to get out and enjoy local entertainment.

"One gentleman insisted I take his seat for a better view," said Butikofer. "When I tried to politely refuse, he would not take no for an answer."

"This is a great opportunity to enjoy good live music and build public relations with the Gunsan community and Koreans in general," he added.

For more information on future events, members are encouraged to contact the Kunsan AB community relations office at 782-5194.