Isang Yun in North and South Korea

Mediator between two countries

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Isang Yun

Program notes

"A composer cannot view the world in which he lives with indifference. Human suffering, oppression, injustice … all that comes to me in my thoughts. Where there is pain, where there is injustice, I want to have my say through my music." (Isang Yun, 1983)

This documentary, filmed in North and South Korea, explores whether music can overcome the boundaries of a divided country. There is one figure of the two Koreas, whose outstanding biography in itself forms a bridge between both worlds: the Korean composer Isang Yun, one of the very few people acknowledged on both sides.

The film traces the course of a life that has been interpreted in different ways, examining the worlds of North and South Korean music and in this way taking the viewer on an exciting journey through two political systems that Isang Yun spent his life trying to reconcile.

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