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Yoo Joon-sang returns to musical stage

2007/01/08 | 398 views | Permalink | Source

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Versatile actor Yoo Joon-sang returns to the stage with the homegrown musical "Claw of Angel" which will be presented from Jan. 23 until March 4 at Towol Theater in the Seoul Arts Center.

Yoo, active both on TV and film screen, plays a double-faced 'Ee-du' who struggles to hide his brutal, evil instincts in a world that forces every human being to be nice and good-mannered.

Yoo's comeback follows in the footsteps of several Korean celebrities leaving the screen for creative musical productions.

Already an iconic star, Cho Seung-woo returns to the small stage in Daehangno with the Korean version of the Broadway musical "Rent" this month while TV comedian Jung Jun-ha recently made his stage debut with the musical "Full Monty".

"I feel so happy about returning to stage after a long break", said Yoo who left the stage four years ago after finishing the musical "The Play". Yoo received the Best Actor trophy from the Korea Musical Award for his performance in the previous musical. Yoo's new musical "Claw of Angel" took its motivation from a mythical story of angels believed to have suffered a great deal of pain by pulling out their toenails not to become the devil. Already described in the title, the musical shows this ambivalence of human nature and the suffering human beings.

"The musical reveals that every human being has brutal instincts inside and it is the emotion of jealousy that stimulates this (hidden) instinct", said Cho Gwang-hwa, producer and writer of the musical at a news conference last week.

Cho is a long-time friend of Yoo who used to work with the former theatrical actor and did their first drama 13 years ago.

Now an experienced actor, Yoo said he was able to fully embrace the character in the musical.

"I cried a lot while playing the musical as I reached the age that could (fully) understand (the life of) the 43-year-old character", said the 38-year-old actor.

The story begins with Ee-du, a violent gangster who accidentally kills his innocent, good spirited twin brother Il-du in the southern port city of Yeosu some 20 years ago. Since the moment of the fratricide, Ee-du steals the life of his good brother and hides his overflowing and impulsive desires.

He struggles with his demonic nature while pretending to be a kind-hearted person by suppressing his basic instincts and by devotedly raising Tae-poong (meaning Typhoon in English), the son of Il-du, as a way to seek redemption for what he did to his own brother.

But Ee-du discovers his evil character after meeting Hee-jin and finding out that his younger brother, in fact his nephew, is also in love with her.

Some say that the musical resembles the Broadway musical "Jekyll and Hyde", with its story about a double-faced person suffering from balancing two opposite characters: good and evil.

The producer of the musical says it might have similar theme but it has a whole different style and color.

"I didn't know about 'Jekyll and Hyde' when I began writing this musical piece. The structure can be similar to the (Broadway) musical, but the way it is expressed is quite different", said producer Cho.

Tickets are 35,000 won to 60,000 won ($38 to $62).

For more information, call (02) 764-8760 or visit Open the link

By Cho Chung-un

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