[Osen = Reporter Park Jin Young]
So beautiful, and such a sorrowful Hedwig. It’s time to fall in love again with Yoo Yeon Seok.
Yoo Yeon Seok is currently hitting the stage, playing the role of Hedwig in the musical ‘Hedwig’. ‘Hedwig’ is a musical that tells the story of a transgender from East Germany who wanted to get over her painful scars from the past and to live a new life through music. It made its debut in Korea in 2005. Since then until now the steady seller musical has been performed over 2000 times and has attracted about 480,000 audiences.
Many stars such as Jo Seung Woo, Oh Man Seok, Jo Jung Suk, Yoon Do Hyun, Kim Da Hyun, Choi Jae Woong, Kim Jae Wook, Kim Dong Wan, Byun Yo Han and more have came up on the stage as Hedwig and made the crowd go wild. Cruising onto its 13th year this year, it has lined up Oh Man Seok, Yoo Yeon Seok, Michael Lee, Jung Moon Sung, and Jo Hyung Kyun to climb on the stage and alternatively play the role of Hedwig.
Among those names, the most eye-catching one is Yoo Yeon Seok. Debuted in musical scene through ‘The Passer Through Walls’ (Le Passe Muraille) in 2015, Yoo Yeon Seok has chosen to do ‘Hedwig’ despite receiving a lot of love-calls from movies and dramas after the success of SBS’s ‘Romantic Doctor Teacher Kim’. Yoo Yeon Seok’s crave to act on the ordinary stage is so big, that he even expressed his wishes to do musicals directly to his company when he was starring in the ‘The Passer Through Walls’ musical.
Nevertheless, Yoo Yeon Seok’s choice to do ‘Hedwig’ is something unexpected. Both the musical and the character must be quite burdensome towards him as so many veteran actors have gone through it over the past 13 years. While being the most anticipated one in the casting, it is also an undeniable fact that Yoo Yeon Seok received the biggest worries too. However, from his first performance onward Yoo Yeon Seok has swept away all of those worries with his stage presence and made the crowd go wild.
Yoo Yeon Seok, who had showed off his stunning beauty on his Hedwig’s profile photo before the show started, received overwhelming attention on appearing on stage. We know that he was Yoo Yeon Seok but his own perfect figure as Hedwig made us doubt our own eyes. His stage filled presence and excellent singing skills are the basics, then he superbly portrayed the pain and sadness that Hedwig has through his deeply felt emotional acting.
Hedwig’s soul was fully woven into every line of his words and every lyric of the songs he sang. Therefore we couldn’t take our eyes off him even for a moment. When delivering the vast amount of lines and songs, he brought in the fun by bursting out with explosions of ad-libs that belong only to Yoo Yeon Seok. He also made reference to the lines and situations from ‘Romantic Doctor Teacher Kim’ and ‘Reply 1994’ that he himself starred in, and when the audiences shouted unexpectedly, he reacted wittily with sticky swear words.
We can exactly feel how much effort and practice Yoo Yeon Seok has made all of this time. The Angry Inch band and Yitzhak are there but it’s the main actor’s capability that is extremely important in pulling off Hedwig’s performance, and Yoo Yeon Seok is nothing short of that. He came up on the stage only as Hedwig, not as Yoo Yeon Seok, not as Kang Dong Joo nor as Chilbong. On top of the eye and ear candies being presented, we were being deeply moved and had hearty laughs and because of these, there was absolutely no reservation nor regret that it went over 130 minutes.
The musical Hedwig will be performed until to Nov 5th, 2017 at Hongik University Daehakro Art Center Grande Theater
(To read the translated comments on this review article, click here)
[T/N: The translation might contain errors since there are parts that I got confused with. So do help and tell if there are mistakes that you can see ^^]