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Amazon bestselling novel & BTS pick 'Almond' turned into play Updated: 2021-05-21 15:18:34 KST

It's Friday, and for those of you who are looking forward to some culture experience over the weekend, we turn to our regular 'Life With Culture' segment, with our culture correspondent Kim Bo-kyoung, who'se here in the studio with us.
Bo-kyoung welcome, what have you brought us today?

Hi, Mok-yeon, since BTS released their second English language song "Butter" earlier today, I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at a play based on Son Won-pyeong's novel "Almond" which BTS were seen reading during the reality show "In the SOOP - BTS". Acclaimed worldwide and translated into around 15 languages, the novel has also been made into a play, which is on at the Aram Nuri Arts Center in Goyang city. Let's take a look.

Acclaimed by readers worldwide, the book "Almond" has been turned into a play, sharing its coming-of-age story with the audience.
The book "Almond" was released in 2017 after winning the Changbi Publishers' Literary Award a year before.
After that, Son Won-pyeong's novel was named as Amazon's Best Book of May 2020, and was also awarded the prestigious 2020 Japanese Booksellers' Awards in the category of translated fiction novel.
The story's protagonist Yoon-jae was born with a small amygdala the part of the brain that looks like an almond.
This makes him emotionless, and the story shows his efforts to understand other people, especially through his friend Gon-ee.

"Yoon-jae is an emotionless boy. He does not feel what other people easily feel - happiness, sadness and fear. I tried to deliver his emotionless mind. Yet he is always eager to know what others feel and tries to understand, so I focused to show such moves."

"Gon-ee knows how to feel, yet ironically he is quite similar to Yoon-jae in that he does not know how to express his feelings leading him to keep making wrong choices.

While the book focuses on Yoon-jae, the play uses other characters to deliver some of Yoon-jae's lines. It also puts the spotlight on the relationship between Yoon-jae and Gon-ee, showing how they each supplement what the other one lacks.

"One of Yoon-jae's lines says the reason why we have not become monsters is because either we were holding others' hands or others were holding our hands. I hope the play can soothe people's minds during these tiring days."

The play is on until May 30th.

It'll must be very interesting to see how the novel has been adapted into a play.
Now Bo-kyoung, are there any other performances that our viewers might be interested in?

Of course, the annual Korea Opera Festival which was downsized last year showcasing only three pieces due to COVID-19, has scaled back and this year will present six works focused mainly on women's lives.
Shows include one of the world's most-loved operas, Puccini's "Tosca", set in Rome at the time of Napoleon’s invasion of Italy, and the tragic story "Anna Bolena".
The festival runs until June 6th at Seoul Arts Center.
Musical lovers will be excited to hear that "Dracula" a musical based on the famous novel kicked off just yesterday.
There had previously been worries that cases of COVID-19 among the cast would have led to the musical's another postponement.
The intertwined love story of Dracula unfolds against the backdrop of a Gothic castle and is performed by well-known musical actors Kim Jun-su and Shin Sung-rok.
Today, Korean movie maniacs overseas might want to take a look at the 19th edition of the Florence Korea Film Fest, which showcases over a hundred Korean films.
This year the festival focuses on the late director Kim Ki-Duk and actress Moon So-ri.
It also features the screening of the first film by Oscar winner Bong Joon-ho "Barking Dogs Never Bite", and an exclusive interview made for the festival.

Thank you Bo-kyoung for all that information. I will see you next week.

Thank you.
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