“Gangnam Style” by Psy has played an important role in making an incredible history of K-Pop. Gangnam Style is absolutely amazing. The record has ranked second place in Billboard’s Hot 100, first place in UK Official Charts, and first place in Itunes Charts. This is the first time that a Korean singer has entered these three charts. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Gangnam Style also holds a Guinness World Record for the most “Like” clicks on YouTube. The Glove and Mail, a Canadian press, highly praised Psy as a national hero.
Why is “Gangnam Style” so popular? Forbes analyzed this question from four different perspectives. First, Psy is a genuine star. Second, the dances are easy to do badly, but need a little skill to do well, like "Macarena”. Third, the song has intergenerational appeal. Finally, the fact that Gangnam Style is almost completely in Korean makes it open to various interpretations and misinterpretations. Also, according to a survey, “crowdsourcing” (making the crowds participate in the process of production) and permission for making the video parodies helped “Gangnam Style” become popular.
Psy is a graduate of Berklee College of Music and lived in Boston for 4 years. Psy described himself as an “ordinary father of two daughters” and a “fat man”. Psy wrote the lyrics by himself. Most of his songs are funny, just like “Gangnam Style”. Let us expect another hilarious song from him soon!
On August 26th, 2012, Ensemble DITTO visited Daegu’s Gye-Myung Art Center to perform its sixth annual recital. Named “The White Night”, the recital marked the finale of the ensemble’s 2012 DITTO Festival. The ensemble decided to showcase various pieces of Russian composers. Playing an eclectic selection of music, the ensemble entertained hundreds of audiences of all ages.
Founded in 2007 by violist Richard YongJae O’Neill, Ensemble DITTO quickly rose to fame among Korea’s classical fans. The ensemble has its base in New York City, where group members attend rehearsals most of the time. This year, the ensemble features four young, rising stars – violist O’Neill, violinist Stefan Pi Jackiw, cellist Michael Nicholas, and pianist Ji-Yong. At the recital in Daegu, the ensemble was joined by four guest musicians –remarkably talented student musician, Han Kim (clarinetist), oboist Kyung-Ham, violinist Daniel Chong, and bassist Da Xun Zhang. The ensemble and their guests showcased four pieces of Russian chamber music: Stravinsky’s Suite from L’Histoire Du Soldat, Prokofiev’s Quintet in g minor, op.39, Tchaikovsky’s String Quartet No.1 in D Major, op.11, and Shostakovich’s Piano Quintet in g minor, op.57. The ensemble’s 100-minute show was greeted with a resounding applause from the audience, who begged for an encore. In addition to the four main pieces, Ensemble DITTO also played Shostakovich’s Jazz Suite Waltz No. 2.
Not surprisingly, Ensemble DITTO appeals to a wide audience including those less familiar with classical music. Ensemble members confessed concern that their rising popularity among this wider audience might emphasize commercial appeal more than their actual performance. They stressed that no matter how much popularity and mainstream coverage the ensemble accrues, their foremost interest is to perform a genuine piece of classical music with integrity. Now that their recitals are over for this year, Ensemble DITTO aims to orchestrate their seventh recital for next year. All members anticipate the delivery of another successful showcase.