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Basic Compositions

 


Traditional Korean music is comprised of the Chong-ak and Minsogak genres.

As the music was enjoyed by the intelligentsia, Chong-ak roughly corresponds to classical music in the West, whereas Minsogak, as the music of the common people, corresponds to Western folk music and popular music.

As a general rule, the Chong-ak style of music has a spiritual, contemplative quality, while Minsogak openly celebrates emotions in a lively fashion. The latter thus leads the listener toward an ecstatic state of mind. In Western terms, the former is close to Classicism while the latter resembles Romanticism. The representative compositions of Chong-ak include Sujech'eon, Yongsan hoesang and kagok, while those of Minsogak include sanjo, Samul Nori and p'ansori.

 

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